Organizations around the world are struggling with one key hiring metric: talent retention. According to research by Kronos and Future Workplace, 87% of HR leaders readily agree that employee retention is a primary concern. The situation in India is no different. According to KPMG 2017-18 Indian Annual Compensation Trends Survey, average annual voluntary attrition across various industries in India is 13.4%.
For businesses today, finding and retaining the best employees is critical for growth. This is especially true if the people jumping ship are highly talented, with much time and money already invested in nurturing them. Not only do high performers cost more to replace, but studies also show that new employees might take up to two years to reach the same level of productivity as the existing staff. Apart from training and hiring costs, high turnover also negatively impacts business morale, reputation, customer relationships, and other hard to measure intangibles.
So how can companies prevent this massive waste of talent? Here are three ways for organizations to retain their best employees:
1. Give employees the visibility they want: It is vital for managers to keep their finger on the pulse of their organizations. Providing continuous feedback, both positive and negative, is crucial to ensuring that employees feel productive, invested and appreciated. Feedback surveys also create an environment where people are comfortable with offering ideas and receiving criticism. Providing monthly feedback based on a real-time, transparent scorecard-based mechanism, enables real-time improvements and motivates employees to self-govern their performance.
2. Strengthen company culture: There is no single formula to build an enticing and engaging company culture. HR leaders should consider providing flexible work schedules and remote access to employees. This perk demonstrates that the organization values work-life balance, and also helps save commuting time and fuel wastage. Companies can also offer a range of perks that help employees meet their career goals. For instance SAP Labs India focuses on building a strong culture of entrepreneurship. Through its SAP Startup Studio, it helps curate growth-stage startups that solve complex business challenges. Such perks not only gives employees the tools necessary to drive innovation but also helps engage employees and transform organizational culture.
3. Provide growth opportunities: When employees stagnate at work, they become less engaged and tend to look for better growth opportunities outside the organization. How can businesses prevent this? Providing employees with a clear path for advancement and opportunities to learn a new job skill are essential to maintaining high levels of motivation. Understating employee career ambitions and setting annual goals also helps align tasks with employee goals and push them to achieve better results. To keep high potential employees engaged, provide meaningful learning abilities through career development programs that provide an opportunity to network with other leaders and program alumni.
It’s no surprise that employee retention levels directly correlate with employee satisfaction and engagement levels. Organizations must therefore set the right tone through a great onboarding experience and give employees the opportunity to use their unique strengths every day to drive superior retention. In addition to leveraging formal recognition opportunities, team leaders must look for ways to acknowledge employees informally and build a personal rapport with them. Creating a work environment where employees are encouraged and supported for their best work, in turn, creates loyal teams that contribute to the organization’s long term success.