Today’s labor market might be tighter than in recent years, but employee loyalty is still an issue. And turnover can be expensive. The Work Institute estimates that employers spend an average of $8,500 to replace an hourly staff member. Recruiting, training and paying overtime to others who fill in all add up.
Are you doing all you can to keep your employees loyal?
Shawn Boyer, c.e.o. of Snagajob.com, advises watching for the following signs that you are not doing so:
Attitude changes. Most workers aren’t very good at putting on an act. If they’re thinking of leaving a position, they mentally start to disengage even before they’re actively looking for another job. Workers who used to go the extra mile become more of an average employee—or get through the shift doing the bare minimum required. Suddenly, they’re 5 to 10 minutes late for their shift and taking a longer lunch.
Avoidance: Workers who are thinking of leaving often decide to lie low. For fear of admitting that they’d prefer another job, they avoid taking breaks with co-workers, and a “chatty Cathy” is suddenly mum.
Something just doesn’t feel right: And sometimes, it’s a combination of clues that indicate a worker is disgruntled. You may notice a trend of complaining more, both to colleagues and to management. And maybe some recent absences seem suspicious: In the back of your mind, you’re wondering, “Is he really sick?”
Boyer advises proactively creating a working environment that reduces your hourly turnover rate. Some of the practices he suggests:
Offering competitive pay and benefits. In a Snagajob.com survey of hourly workers who indicated they were likely to change jobs, 72 percent said they would forego job satisfaction in favor of better pay. And 49 percent also said they would bank better benefits above job satisfaction. Companies that wish to retain their hourly workers must be aware of local offerings from similar employers and be prudent about increasing their compensation and benefits so that a better offer cannot be found just down the road.
Rewarding your staff. Even if you can’t provide a staff a raise right now, you may be able to offer other incentives. Consider an extra paid vacation day, gift certificates, company discounts, etc. And verbal or written praise should not be overlooked. Sincere, positive feedback makes employees feel good—and needed.
Taking care of your company culture. Paychecks motivate people, but they aren’t everything. In a snagajob.com survey of hourly workers aged 18-29, nearly one-third said the best thing about their job is their coworkers. Given that, you should take the time to understand the traits and personalities of employees who thrive in your environment to make sure any new hires fit in well. And consider team interviews, so applicants and current employees have a chance to meet before a hire is made.