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Is your clock ticking?




What will the year 2020 be remembered for? Forcing everyone into lockdown or the subsequent fall out and the effect that it had on people?


There’s no denying that this was a difficult time for both employers and employees and it gave both the opportunity to work in different ways. Opportunity opened up for more employees to work in an agile manner, more often than not working from home until it was safe to venture out. It also enabled employers to embrace new ways of working and managing employee’s welfare.


However this period of reflection, for many, evoked greater change. Since the pandemic, the drive for employee retention has increased with the impact of ‘The Great Resignation’ hitting employers hard. Since lockdown was lifted, many employees have struggled with the shift back to less flexible ways of working. With employees starting to question;

 

Is this the right role for me?


Is this how I want to work?

                                                   

Employee retention is becoming a more pressing issue for the following three reasons:


  • Productivity - The need to keep valuable and knowledgeable employees. When employees are happy with their jobs, companies are rewarded with higher commitment, skill, and morale

  • The cost and uncertainty of recruitment – Recruitment is not always straightforward and can take time, money and resources

  • To safeguard morale of employees - High retention boosts camaraderie. It's good for employee morale and improves productivity


Over the past six months, there has been a sudden surge in companies asking Ena HR to advise and help them on how they can retain valuable employees. My advice to companies is, understand why your employees are leaving.


As a business it is really important that you consider why people are leaving your company. Many employers and employees see the exit interview as a tick box exercise but it is so much more than that. It allows businesses to really comprehend what’s working well, what needs to change and where things can be improved.


I always find it interesting that when someone leaves a company, the first question asked is “will you get more money?” Exit interviews usually prove that this is not the case. Increasingly I am finding employees leave for one (or a combination of) four main reasons:


·       Toxic environments leading to boredom and frustration

·       Work-life balance

·       Lack of opportunities or prospects - When people don't feel valued at work or recognised for what they do, they become demotivated and disengaged

·       Poor management (people don’t leave their jobs, they leave a bad boss) - When talented employees are micromanaged, they often do one thing; quit.


So, what is the answer? Unfortunately there is no straight forward answer but my advice is to:


Start by understanding what is really going on in your business

You may think that everything is ok…..but how are employees really feeling? Have you completed an employee engagement survey to understand the wellbeing of your employees and how they view the company? This can provide insightful information that can evoke positive change. It also lets the employees know that you care about them, that they are empowered to have a voice and that they are listened to.


Think holistically about your business and what you can offer

With most companies still being in recovery from the pandemic, many are unable to compete with bigger companies by increasing salaries and annual bonuses.  So, where are the quick and easy wins that you can offer employees so that they feel valued? Do you say thank you to your employees? Could you give them an extra days leave for their birthday? Have you offered your employee free courses/online training sessions? Little thoughtful things go a long way to boosting morale.


Think about the benefits package you offer

Post pandemic there has been a rise in employees reaching out for help and support from their employers. Do you have access to an employee assistance programme (EPA) that can support you employees? Do you offer flexible working to employees? Do you offer development opportunities? This could involve personal development as well as promotion opportunities.


Drive and cultivate the culture of your company

Foster a positive and friendly working environment. If you have a happy workforce that feels valued and respected, they are more likely to stay. They will also pass their happiness onto customers and co-workers. Those who experience a positive culture will thrive, become more confident and productive.  

Creating a supportive working environment will allow employees to feel psychologically safe. This will allow employees to be more open and more inclined to share when they are unhappy with something, or if they are thinking of leaving and the reasons behind this. Having a supportive environment will allow you to address issues before they become bigger and result in resignations.


Consider your leadership style

How you lead is essential to keeping employees on board and happy. Think about how you lead….are you happy with your employees having autonomy or do you like to micromanage? Does letting go of a task or delegating make you feel out of control? Can you let go and trust your employees to take a task on and complete it? Do you give your employees meaningful work that allows them their own creative expression and growth opportunity? Do you ask your employees for feedback on you?


It's ok to find leading a business difficult, especially when it comes to managing people. If you feel like this, let Ena HR help you. We can offer advice, training and materials that can help you to retain your employees. If you need any support, please contact us at:



Tel: 07779 788 957

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