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The Importance of Retaining Employees

These days, there seem to be countless workers available to fill an open position in a company. Layoffs and downsizing have left a large number of people in this country unemployed. This glut of workers may make employee retention seem unimportant as there are so many candidates vying for open positions. But today's smart, savvy, lean organizations recognize the importance of retaining good employees. These organizations know they depend on the performance, specific knowledge and quality of their current employee base and they work hard to keep them on board.
The reality is, even in today's economic climate, employee turnover is expensive. When an employee leaves your organization you have to spend a lot of time and money to find a suitable replacement. These costs include the time spent screening candidates, verifying credentials, checking backgrounds and references, interviewing, hiring, and then training the new employee. When you complete all of these tasks all you are is back to where you started out - you're not ahead of the game. And of course there are also the hard costs of productivity loss. Experts estimate that replacement costs are about 2 •½ times the salary of the individual, and may even include lost customers, lost business and decreased employee morale.
So, how do you retain good employees? Three great ways include getting to know them, offering great compensation and benefits (even if that means utilizing employee benefit administration services) and allowing for some flexibility in the workplace.
One important element in retaining employees is to get to know them by meeting with them on occasion. During those meetings, make sure they feel recognized, heard and respected. Praise them for their accomplishments. Ask them what kinds of things they'd like to be doing. Take some time to find out who they are and learn about their talents and abilities.
Another important element in retaining your workforce is, of course, offer competitive compensation. A recent Society for Human Resource Management survey revealed that 53 percent of respondents were leaving their job to find better compensation and benefits. If you're a small company and think you can't afford to offer benefits, think again. You can access extremely affordable rates by working with a company that offers employee benefit administration services. In essence, you outsource your health care benefits which gets you access to fantastic group rates.
A third way to retain your good employees is to encourage your employees to balance their work and personal lives. That could mean being flexible on what time employees start and end their days and may even include changing up your main business hours. Happy employees are the ones who feel they are free to attend their own personal events as well as their kid's events without repercussions at work.
Making employee retention a high priority is critical to staying lean in today's constantly changing economic environment. Do everything you can to keep your good employees including getting to know them, offering them great compensation and health benefits and allowing them some flexibility at work.
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