Employee Retention. What are you doing as an employer?

Staff retention seems to be a tricky aspect of work to perfect, especially with the generation post the Baby Boomers. While employers would like to save costs everywhere possible, they seem to battle to save costs due to turnover:

1. Costly candidate search to replace lost employee.

2. Costs of training new employee due to lost knowledge.

3. Loss of productivity associated with the time between the loss of an employee and hiring a replacement.

4. Loss of productivity associated with the time it takes for the replacement to learn and master the job, etc.

It is almost expected to receive pension fund, provident fund, and medical aid as a salary package. And even when these ‘perks’ could guarantee retention back in the day, today, as much as those perks are appreciated they do not guarantee employee loyalty.

Studies indicate that money is not the best method of motivation. The argument is that money tends to make employees hostile towards each other, and therefore result in competitive behaviour. Other examples also indicating that money is not the best method of motivation are gathered by studying individuals who have an opportunity to jump ship for a better salary, but don’t. In such a case it becomes clear that something other than money is motivating to such individuals. But what is it? Is it Person- Organisation-fit (P-O fit)? Is it because the company is constantly creating opportunities for its employees to advance themselves? Is it the opportunity to showcase their skills and talent? What is it?

Well, it is pretty clear that what worked before does not necessarily work now, and therefore organisations need to change their ways to adapt to current situations. Secondly,  Employee Wellness is more a result of the organisation engaging with its employees than it is about rewarding them with money. By engaging I mean knowing what makes them tick, managing their performance, giving meaningful feedback, supply of opportunties to prove that learning took place, and rewarding employees.

All this requires a true one-on-one where  data for employee X is not going to be forced onto employee Y simply because employee X yields more favourable results. I think that is a realistic hurdle to overcome, only if organisations would adapt and thrive, or they will fail.