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The Great Resignation: How to Be an Employer of Choice

  • Publish Date: Posted 5 months ago

Turnover isn’t fun for any business.

It’s synonymous with additional costs, project delays, missed deadlines, dwindling innovation, and low company morale.

When employees leave, company success is throttled. While turnover has been a sore spot for organizations, it has been amplified in the age of The Great Resignation.

Now, more than ever, employers are dealing with a mass exodus of employees heightened by a new era of work and scrutiny of the workplace post the pandemic. In fact, a record 4.4 million employees quit their jobs in September. 

As such, businesses today report talent retention as a top concern. Employers are simultaneously competing with a record low employment rate, making matters worse.

Here’s how to be an effective employer of choice during The Great Resignation.

While we can blame market conditions for galvanizing the current mass exodus of employees, organizations need to understand that the Great Resignation was a ticking time bomb waiting to happen.

For years, some employers have ignored the growing need from employees for fulfilling work. Industry data has indicated the trends for years, but the global pandemic and The Great Resignation has finally pushed demand for a new era of work. Retention is now at the forefront of business objectives to maintain business continuity.

Moving forward, employers who seek continued success must prioritize introspection, which means getting down to the nitty-gritty of root causes of turnover within their organization. 

Begin this journey by using data to determine work experience pain points. Place priority on exploring metrics around compensation, time to promotion, size of pay increases, tenure, performance, training opportunities and more. Observing these aspects will give employers an inside look into areas of improvement among employees. They can also take a deeper look into data by segmenting information by location, function, job title and other demographics to observe where work experiences differ. 

A proper analysis of the current work environment inside your organization will only highlight the area of weakness that needs tending. It will also help you identify roles and employees with the highest probability of resigning and those who can use intervention.

When it comes to employee experience, prioritizing insight about the current state of your organization is the first step to becoming an employer of choice.

Once you’ve identified the root issues behind turnover within your organization, it’s time to create a plan.

Your plan should be a long-term, comprehensive strategy. It’s important to note that retention should always be a goal for an organization, not a short-term priority. Thinking only for the interim sake will only temporarily resolve issues. Being an employer of choice requires never-ending commitment.

Nonetheless, developing your strategy should start with the data and insight you’ve collected. If you don’t have the data at your disposal, now is the time to build an infrastructure for it. 

After collecting your information, creating programs in response to root issues driving turnover is next. No one blanket program can solve all your problems at once; you’ll have to create and tailor programs for each one. 

For instance, if lack of promotion is a huge concern within your company, you might want to create a strategy to develop a career track for each department or role within your business. If diversity and inclusion are an area of weakness, you might prioritize developing external partnerships or bias training to encourage a more diverse candidate pool. Moreover, if competitive pay is not where it should be, you might want to leverage a staffing partner for industry expertise on salary market insight.

When your strategy is in place and approved by the proper stakeholders, it’s time to execute. And that means following through on your plans. 

To ensure proper execution of your plan, consider creating committees to handle specific programs and establishing a frequency of meetings among partners to provide status updates, insights and recommendations. Implementing touchpoints like this will only ensure that your execution is on track. But, execution will only go so far without employee feedback.

During this entire process, it’s paramount that you listen to your workforce to get a pulse of the employee sentiment. Companies with high retention value and act on employee feedback.

To involve your employees, send out surveys to understand their desires, likes, feelings and dislikes. You can also set up panels, invite them to engage in constructive dialogue or solicit candid feedback via HR interviews.

The Takeaway

All in all, turnover will always be inevitable for any organization. Employees will come and go. 

While a business can’t control who decides to leave, employers have the power to give it their best shot in providing a work environment where an employee can be proud, satisfied and encouraged.

Identifying your root issues, executing a plan and valuing employee input will only refine your employee experience and put you one step closer to becoming a true employer of choice.