17 Actionable Employee Retention Strategies You Can Use in 2021

Leslie Tedgui – 18 November 2021 – Reading Time : 11 minutes

France is the second nation in the world that is highly impacted by brain drain. As such, the country has a negative balance of approximately 130,000. Meanwhile, Germany has a positive balance of 374,000. This, as a result, creates inconsistency in the France labor market. As the rate of unemployment struggles to go down, employers are finding it challenging to hire the best talent and ensure employee retention. But what if an outdated management approach explained this talent drain? A track to strictly follow.

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The Talent Drain Increases in France

As aforementioned, France is the second nation in the world to experience extreme brain drain. As such, it records a negative balance of 130,000. Notably, the talent drain affects mainly the young graduates.

Apparently, the number of young professionals moving to other countries has multiplied significantly over the last ten years. Therefore, the subject of talent drain is increasingly worrying French organizations.

But what influences young gifted professionals to seek greener pastures in other countries? For starters, there is the issue of compensation, the desire to gain international experience in the context of globalization, and few opportunities in France, to name just a few. These, among many other factors, are the cause of the talent drain in the country.

But the most common factor seems to be an unconducive working environment and conditions. This basically means a lack of confidence in the managers, stormy interpersonal relationships, scorned personal/work-life balance, and nearly zero responsibilities and autonomy. This has also forced some of the best talents to shift to freelancing. In fact, 1 out of 5 French people would prefer to pursue entrepreneurship and forgo the salaried workforce for good.

How to Improve Employee Retention to Fight Against Talent Drain ?

High-Quality Life At Work

 In today’s world, psychological health in organizations is a severe issue for developing talent and better talent management. Approximately 86% – 92% of medium-scale employees are unanimous on the matter. Plus, the human resource departments would be 66% to agree on the importance of improving internal relations.

So, how can you improve the quality of life at work? The key secret is to enhance internal communication and strengthen team cohesion. To be able to achieve this, companies can leverage team-building sessions, after-work sessions and seminars.

Constant collaborative meetings and collaborative tools take a crucial role in talent retention. As a matter of fact, these human resource management solutions increase collaboration, promote mutual assistance, in-person and remotely.

 

Attractive Remuneration to Attract Top Talent

 For many years, salary has remained a crucial criterion for talent acquisition and retention. This is why it is imperative to revalue salaries, especially the salary at the beginning of an individual’s career.

It would help if you never viewed it as an expense but instead as an investment. A decent salary considerably reduces turnover, saves money on recruiting and onboarding and saves in the long term. The same is also true for increases over time, ensuring that you pay your workers to match the company’s investment and match your employees’ talent.

 

Valuation of High Potential Employees

 To attract and retain high potential talent, it is crucial to invest in the proper recruitment process – career perspective, caring recruiter, effective talent management strategy, attractive employer brand, and developed organizational culture… internal talents should be taken into account.

As a manager and leader, your task is to identify your employees’ most potent abilities and add value to them. If you compromise your employees’ ability, you place the odds on your side to scare them away. So, you should give them suitable missions, those that correspond to their knowledge and skills.

Therefore, this means making your employees responsible and trusting them by allowing their total autonomy. Moreover, the valuation and soft skills and hard skills involve gratitude. Take as much time as needed to thank and congratulate your employees for their work after completing an assignment.

 

Professional Talent Development

 Forty-two percent of millennials claim that they are willing to leave a company if they do not learn as fast as they hope. To reduce the talent drain, the implementation of a vocational experiential learning strategy is therefore imperative. Thanks to the digital transformation, professional development is leaning towards a culture of digital learning on demand.

Distinctively? Face-to-face training is losing ground to other learning methods such as corporate university and blended learning or fully digitalized systems such as mobile learning. To promote internal skills development and become more competitive, you should adopt these innovative training types.

 

Streamline Onboarding and Orientation

 According to a study conducted by The Human Capital Institute, experience-centric onboarding – an innovative onboarding procedure that arouses human connection and engagement – improves talent retention by 82 percent and increases productivity by 70 percent. However, according to Gallup, only 12 percent of workers agree that their companies did a decent job onboarding.

Typically, the problem lies in viewing onboarding as a one-time thing, while in a true sense, it should be a continuous process that spans up to 12 months and engages all employees. The benefit of onboarding programs is that they create connections to the organization by promoting connections with the individuals in it – notably, the new talent’s manager. When the manager assumes an active role in onboarding, workers are highly likely to call the process a significant success.

 

Always Gather Feedback with Pulse Surveys

 There is more to employee engagement than just doing their work and getting a salary. Organizations must measure how connected colleagues are to the company and if they are invested in its success.

Annual engagement surveys offer incredible insights into issues affecting the company in general, and unveil what is affecting your retention rates. But due to their broad frequency and reach, these surveys lack efficient levers human resources could leverage to incentivize professionals to stay.

On the contrary, pulse surveys with several questions are crucial in collecting data on a focused theme and are especially instrumental in business environments that are changing rapidly. Employees also want to provide their feed at least once every year, and you should let them as this will make them more engaged.

 

Do Not Overwhelm and Overwork Your Employees

If a person told you working in firm X would reduce your life expectancy by even 0.5%, you would probably accept a role in another company. Researchers from Stanford and Harvard discovered that long hours lessen a person’s life by 20 percent.

With the high demand for high-potential professionals and a renewed cultural focus on wellness and health, few professionals are willing to persevere in such conditions. Morneau Shepell, in their recent survey, reported that 34% of employees and 40% of managers experience extreme levels of stress.

Overworking your employees is a short-term strategy but has some far-reaching consequences. Moreover, this approach is not an ideal management strategy. Many researches have shown that productivity reduces for every extra hour, after a certain point.

In addition, employees who are often overworked and stressed become ill and make costly mistakes. The environment is simply untenable. You may benefit from short-term wins in terms of completed tasks. But with time, it declines the organization morale and feeds into an organization’s hiring and retention costs as burnt-out workers leave and share their experience with other professionals.

Happy worker in 2021

Introduce Mentorship Programs

Pairing new talents with mentors is an excellent strategy to add to your onboarding process, particularly in a remote work setting. Mentors may welcome new joiners in the organization and offer sound advice. New talents learn the ropes from experienced employees, and on the other hand, they provide a fresh viewpoint for their seniors.

Note, however, mentorship opportunities should also be extended to older employees – and your general team’s work satisfaction and employee retention – can immensely benefit from this employee retention program.

 

Encourage Employee Creativity

Even though many organizations argue, they value creativity, but they do not put any effort into supporting this notion. Google, for instance, Has a 20 percent program, in which their staff is given a chance to work on side tasks that interest them.

Michael Poh, a Hongkiat blogger, advises the following steps to promote creativity in the office:

 

Give Rewards

• If you welcome suggestions, kindly take them seriously. Identify and provide incentives to your employees.

 

Provide An Outlet

• Some employees do not like the attention or to be named because of their ideas. Leaders must create opportunities for both private and public feedback or contributions.

 

Create Innovation Teams

• These are people who are tasked to come up with ideas on a given topic.

 

Have Fun

• Ensure a positive working environment where spontaneity and creativity happen.

 

Encourage Respect in the Office

Now, more than before, people are looking for respect at their workplace. No one wants to feel unimportant or devalued within a company, leading to a lack of respect. The following are the top five things that professionals look for in the workplace :

• Compensation
• Respect
• Stability
• Work-life balance
• Health benefits

Respect is among the top three things people look for.

You can ensure the culture of respect by implementing various innovative employee retention strategies recommended in this guide, including encouraging creativity, recognition, feedback, collaboration, and so forth. Moreover, it is vital to empower your team with the resources and materials they want and show thoughtfulness and kindness in the process.

For instance, you can say “thank you” to staff that submit their assignments, greet them with joy as they come to the office, and rather than interrogating them about their job, ask if they need any help instead.

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Earn The Trust Of Your Staff

Employees work much better when they trust their managers and those who assign them responsibilities. They are likely to accomplish their goals when they believe in the person instructing them to do the tasks.

Forty-six percent of workers say that lack of transparent communication is forcing them to look for employment elsewhere. Seventy-nine percent of high potential employees have confidence and trust in their managers. If you have not started executing an employee engagement program, there is an excellent chance that they do not trust you as much as you think.

As you are striving to develop most trust with your employees, it will be necessary to:

• Develop and nurture personal connections.
• Motivate your team members.
• Enhance honesty and transparency.
• Avoid favoritism.
• Give credit and shoulder blame.
• Display competence in your work.

As a manager and leader, make it your mission to know all your employees more. Initiate open-minded conversations and make them feel free and welcomed.

 

Create Flexible Working Arrangements

In some industries, some employees are expected to be at work 24 hours a day. And such expectation pushes away many people who would have otherwise come with incredible skills to the company.

At certain times, the need to be present can result in a drain of talent and resources too, when those working at home are equally productive. Remote working has its benefits, such as the challenging issue of going to the office – commuting. Research has found that 23 percent of employees have resigned at work because of a bad commute.

What you can do about that: managers and leaders must embrace flexible hours and remote working. But this may not be the case in some professions where some staff is needed to be present at all times, such as customer service. Meanwhile, if your team works on deliverables, allow them to choose where they work best.

One financial services firm allows the employee to arrive late, leave early and work remotely as much as they like with no questions, as long as they complete their tasks. If this is not possible, you may want to consider conditional flexibility.

For example, the ability to work remotely two days a week with the option of changing the days every week. Plus allowing flexible hours, allow your employees to create a workable schedule that is reasonable to them.

What is Better? A person who does a 9 to 5 job or one that works in the evening or weekends but can leave work at 3:30 so they can pick their children up from school before working remotely for the rest of the night. Allow your team members some leeway, and they will give you loyalty.

Moreover, this employer branding strategy will improve your hiring efforts because flexible work arrangements enable you to access a qualified candidate.

 

Communicate Transparently

Many organizations know the importance of continuous communication via newsletters, messages from the management, and town hall meetings. Professionals who understand and subscribe to the firm’s goals are highly efficient in their roles at work.

While it may be true that you have good intentions, how successful are you becoming? Again, research studies are resourceful – asking employees about their perception of the firm’s strategy and comparing results to reality will discover weaknesses in communication. Positive customer retention stats also show that workers are working towards a common goal.

While some organizations fall on honesty, if managers and leaders hold a town hall and discuss how successful the business is, then a few weeks announce layoffs, this will break trust. This is just an example but ensure messaging fits actions.

 

Plan for Upskilling. It has Become a Meme

“What if we train our employees and they leave later? What if we refuse to train them, and they stay?”

These are two aspects that upskilling programs focus on: equip the organization with the necessary skills to accomplish business objectives and engage employees in their work to ensure talent retention. Undeniably, firms that leverage employee professional development witness 53 percent lower attrition than those that do not, as reported by the latest Talent Trends survey by LinkedIn.

When businesses fail to grow their employees, offering disc tests, and retraining your current staff can be an affordable way to meet business requirements. Moreover, upskilling has become a crucial ingredient in attracting and retaining diverse talent. You also want to map upskilling to career mobility within the company. This can eliminate a significant obstacle to investment- the fear that employees will leave the company once trained.

 

Give Your Workforce The Tools They Require to Succeed

If you are setting goals for your employees, you must give them the information, resources, and tools they require to succeed. More often than not, employees are left with their devices without any guidance or direction. So, it would help if you communicate with your employees regularly, asking them particularly about the tasks they are working on, and that you are available to help them accomplish their projects.

 

Provide Sufficient Rest Time for Your Staff

In France, long working hours are a badge of honor, and hardworking individuals are celebrated and glorified. However, people are not machines, and if strained hard and long, they will succumb to fatigue, illness, and costly mistakes. If your goal is employee retention in HRM, it is crucial to provide sufficient resting periods for your staff. This will reduce sick days and stress. Moreover, it is also an issue of regulatory compliance.

 

Effective Change Management

Other than the disruption caused by the Covid-19, every company has to deal with the good, the bad, and change. Employees are looking for leadership for guidance during these challenging times. If your business is experiencing a massive shift, keeping your employees as informed as possible may help reduce anxiety and control the rumor mill. When making significant announcements, do a meeting, group call, or individually and allow people to ask questions.

 

From Manager to Leader

As we have seen earlier, poor management can have far-reaching effects, primarily on loyalty. It is essential to have a manager and leader within the team to promote talent retention instead of flight of talent,

Who is a manager and leader, you may ask? An individual who can manage a team while guiding and inspiring every stakeholder by their impeccable qualities. The manager maintains an excellent relational dynamic within the group, promoting performance and wellbeing. Thanks to their proactive approach, the manager and leader can manage unforeseen circumstances creatively and manage crises with a masterful hand. Lastly, federating talents is their primary skill, and thus goal.

Therefore, a leading talent manager is distinguished by a very developed sense of listening, communication, initiative, and organization. But not everyone is a manager and leader! To do this, the company must put in place a managerial corporate training plan. The experiential training allows acquiring technical knowledge.

But this is not enough! Coaching and disc vs mbti tests are also necessary to develop the skills (leadership) of managers in addition to their know-how. These support sessions thus teach the student to manage their emotions in public, to trust and to trust each other, and to communicate in a non-violent way… Get in touch with one of the MoovOne coaches today to support your managers as well as to help you attract and retain the best talent!

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Leslie Tedgui
CMO
SUCCESS STORY EXECUTIVE COACHING
Saint-Gobain develops its teams’ leadership with MoovOne
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