It's no secret that employees want a good salary and a solid benefits package whenever they can get them. But thanks to the Great Resignation, providing dependable income and quality perks won't cut it anymore.
On the contrary, most serious employers are already offering some version of compensation that can at least compete within their industry. But, with the pandemic pushing so many employees to self-reflect about their employment and fight back against the one-sided nature of work relationships, it's important for employers to go even further.
With that in mind, here are some retention strategies that you should consider as you try to both hire and retain your staff in the months ahead.
1. Turn Employees Into Owners
It's easy for compensation to feel like little more than a corporation throwing money at employees. This is especially true with so much of the process automated.
Direct deposit makes payday a less-than-splashy event. Third-party benefit software providers make it easy to manage things like healthcare plans and 401(k). But, once again, this takes away a lot of the pizzazz that used to make these particularly effective at cultivating employee loyalty and thanking employees for their hard work.
One way to turn disconnected employees into invested ones is by offering a perk that makes them owners. Employee stock programs have a long track record of success in the U.S. In recent years, they are a key form of compensation for many tech companies, but cap table management provider Astrella suggests that employee stock programs should extend beyond Silicon Valley.
Businesses often fear the long-term aspects of setting up a program like this as well as the lack of a direct return on investment. Various studies have shown that by designing and introducing the right plan and with continued employee education, these plans can increase retention, attract top candidates, and increase company results.
If properly implemented, an employee stock program doesn't just offer a nice perk for your employees. It also invites them in as owners who are invested in the success of your company.
2. Fight for Your Employees
Offering an employee stock program is a great way to invite your team in on your company's success. It should also be the first of many initiatives that show that you're willing to fight for your employees' welfare.
There are many other ways that you should continue to demonstrate that you're on your employees' side. This is important because it helps tear down the barriers that naturally form between employee and employer. Rather than coming across as the heartless boss that is trying to get every ounce of worth out of your workers, create retention strategies that focus on one simple mantra: fighting for your employees.
A good example of this is communication. Silence is a happiness killer in the workplace. Try to be transparent and thoughtful about your communication with your staffers.
Another area to consider is work-life balance. According to The Happiness Index, finding flexibility and balance in life can help reduce health problems and ameliorate burnout issues. It can also increase engagement and mindfulness from your staff.
Whether it's through encouraging work-life balance, healthy communication, or anything else, make sure that you're strategically planning in ways to show your employees that you're as invested in them as you want them to be in you.
3. Help Employees Develop
Another clear area of concern for many modern employees is the need to continually be evolving. As tech, in particular, drives rapid business change, employees and employers alike must be ready to adapt at a moment's notice.
For employees, the risk of falling behind can be a deciding factor in how successful their career is. For example, The Balance Careers reports that the median tenure of an employee under the age of 34 is 2.8 years. This paltry number means if an employee falls behind in their field, even by a few months, it can make it difficult for them to land their next job.
One way that companies can alleviate this concern (and ironically cultivate retention) is by actively helping their employees maintain their edge. Investing in your employee's professional development is a key element in earning their trust and loyalty.
This can come in multiple forms. Continuing education allows employees to develop themselves in the classroom. The recruitment masters at Monster also highlight how many reputable companies have quality training and development programs on site. Companies like PayChex, AT&T, Marriott International, and Amazon have all set up opportunities for their employees to better their professional skillset while they're employed under their roofs.
There are many elements that go into retaining an employee. This starts with good compensation and solid benefits -- but it has to go further, at this point. Companies have to show their workers that they are willing to go above and beyond.
They can do this in multiple ways, such as inviting them in as owners and investing in their future. The important thing is that management understands the shift in power that has taken place in the last year. It's no longer possible to go bargain hunting for quality talent. If a company wants the best employees, it has to show them that investing in long-term success is a two-way street.