Blog: Employee Retention – Is it time to re-evaluate your strategy?

Employee Retention – Is it time to re-evaluate your strategy?

We all know the devastating effects of employee turnover, especially those of us in the small business community. So, knowing that recruiting and retaining quality employees is near the top of everyone's to-do list, what kind of retention strategy should you implement? It doesn't have to be complex, but it should be a front burner issue for every business.

There are great benefits in retaining a happy and productive workforce. Employees want to know that they are being treated fairly, paid well, appreciated, and have at least a decent benefit package. So, where to begin? How about re-evaluating these 3 critical categories:

New Hire Orientation/Onboarding

When you hear the term employee orientation, what comes to mind? A review of the company benefit plan, safety orientation, and tour of the work environment. Well, it should involve a whole lot more. Let's first consider a big picture approach called 'Onboarding'. This is not a single event but an entire process that could take weeks to complete. Onboarding will cover ways to acclimate your new hire to the workplace, and ensure that they become productive and satisfied members of your staff. One way to do this is by implementing a Mentor Program. The true function of a mentor within mentorship programs is to act as an additional source of support during an employee's early period with the company. The idea is to supplement the other elements of onboarding, helping fill in the gaps that even the best programs contain. The key to an effective mentorship program is to choose mentors who are temperamentally suited to the task. They don't necessarily need to be your most senior managers. They should, however, be naturally empathetic and enjoy the role of helping, listening and sharing information with others.

Corporate Culture/Work Environment

It is very important that the leaders of every business pay attention to the work environment being created by employees, especially those in a management role. People never like to work somewhere with a negative vibe or where they feel underappreciated.

As much as possible, try to develop a positive work environment where employees can work together, be valued and appreciated, and be able to maintain a work/life balance. Here are some of the typical factors that affect the work environment: compensation, communication, training and development, recognition and rewards, work/life balance, and the ability to have a creative work environment.

Employee Communication

Open and proper communication between staff and management is essential for a thriving workplace. How good of a communicator are you? Are you available to your staff? Do you understand how to best share both good and not-so-good news?

What type of communication should be considered? Email, bulletin board, telephone, in-person, text, internal social media boards etc.

Are you considering all types of employee feedback? Delivering bad news, and good news; communicating to enhance the integrity of the work environment, but also being concerned about the individual employee. Also, don't forget about the dreaded company grapevine. How are you counteracting the negative effects of gossip in the workplace.

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