3 Tips to Improve Employee Retention

Posted by Kayla Lopez

Employers are finding it more difficult to retain the current talent that they have. Today's labor market is extremely competitive, and recruiting new employees can be a laborious task. Have you considered policy and culture changes that help to retain the current employees you have? Sounds simple, right? Not necessarily. The tips below are some of the leading practices from employers who have proven to have strong retention rates.

Now that you have hired your amazing new talent, here are some surefire ways to keep them!


Hire to Fit Your Culture

A group of people sit together in front of computers

It's important to remember that just because someone may fit the skills needed to perform a job, it does not always mean that they are a good fit for your culture. In today's job market one of the top reasons for leaving a company is the culture fit. Every company is different and every company has different core values. While we all appreciate the work ethic and a go-getter mentality, there is more to a culture fit than just that.

There are a ton of outlets out there that can help with culture identification and employee personality assessments. Before diving into that, take a look at your company's current core values. Do they make sense? Are they true? Are they outdated or in need of some polishing? If so, don't be afraid to bring this up to your team and your leadership.


We live in a fast paced, ever-changing environment. Odds are, it wouldn't hurt to take a look at your core values and make sure that they speak to your company’s current employer brand (one of our recruitment trends to watch in 2019). Before you go putting in a budget request for one of those fancy personality test platforms, look at creating a simple survey (SurveyMonkey and Google Forms are examples of free platforms) to get a feel for your company climate.

For example, let’s say you have a role in a department that requires someone to work independent of a team. You can ask questions relevant to this. Also, make sure that the person that you are considering hiring possesses personality traits that fit the role and blend well with those currently on that team. Situational questions can be great personality indicators. Scenario-based questions like, "What would you do if ….." A good culture fit on both sides is key to a great future with for both sides.


Clear Career Pathing

Pole with signs pointing to different cities

How many times have you seen on an application that the candidate's reason for leaving their previous employer was lack of opportunity for advancement? We don't like to feel as though we are restrained or being held captive. Well, that's how an employee may feel if they don't think they can grow within your organization.

Having a clear career path gives an employee something to look forward to and strive for. Although this may be easier said than done with some corporations, sit down and make a 3 or 4 column list. Put entry level positions on the left and leadership roles on the right. Draw lines to each coordinating position and department. This will help you have a visual understanding of what a career map could look like.

Identify some of the qualities and skills that the leadership has. Include those qualities in your career mapping. Engage your internal engine. There is no better way to find out what your leadership wants or what your employees are looking for than simply asking.

Send out a short, anonymous survey to your leadership team. Ask them what makes them successful, why they are a leader and to define what leadership means to them. Reach out to entry level employees and ask the same questions. You may be surprised at the responses you get. All of the information that you get back will be extremely important in creating a successful career mapping program geared toward retention.


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Don't Punish Your Net Promoters

Card with the word "yeah" on top of confetti

When trying to create a great team and an open culture, sometimes we lose sight of those who are already there doing well. As a leader or a manager, you tend to focus on how to improve those around you who may be having challenges. While it's important to focus on the growth and development of those who may need an extra hand, you can't lose sight of the ones who are doing well.

Your net promoters are the core of your organization and can be leveraged in many ways. Don't forget to show appreciation to those who are doing well at their job aside from a simple recognition monthly, quarterly or annually. Bringing these key drivers into innovation and strategy conversation, as well as your training, can have a tremendous and positive impact on retention.

Who better for your team to learn from than those who are doing well at their job and enjoy what they do. It is extremely powerful for a model employee to share what works for them. Think about it, they are the one in the trenches day to day. Although a manager may be able to provide valuable insight, your net promoter has experience in the day to day nuances.

This is a great way to show the employee that you appreciate them and their knowledge, as well as trust their opinion. Your company’s net promoters are your greatest asset, and showing them that you care and value them as a leader can help you retain them. You will find that more often than not top performers in a company will leave the organization because there is a lack of growth, or at least they feel as though there is a lack of growth opportunity. Bringing those employees into larger conversations that can help shape the operations and driving force of your organization paints a much different picture. Show your employees that they are a large part of the future state of the company.  


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Topics: employee retention, recruiting strategy, talent recruiting tips

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