Employee retention refers to the ability of an organization to retain its employees. Employee retention can be represented by a simple statistic (for example, a retention rate of 80% usually indicates that an organization kept 80% of its employees in a given period). However, many consider employee retention as relating to the efforts by which employers attempt to retain employees in their workforce. In this sense, retention becomes the strategies rather than the outcome.
Employee turnover is a symptom of deeper issues that have not been resolved, which may include low employee morale, absence of a clear career path, lack of recognition, poor employee-manager relationships or many other issues. A lack of satisfaction and commitment to the organization can also cause an employee to withdraw and begin looking for other opportunities. Pay does not always play as large a role in inducing turnover as is typically believed.
Here are a few steps for retaining good employees:
★ Establish clear performance metrics and make employees accountable for delivering
★ Leverage performance reviews to gain insights into employee' goals and aspirations
★ Create growth opportunities
★ Underscore positive feedback with something tangible
You have to find a growth path for the great ones. The great ones will join your company to grow, to learn, to do new things. If they can not grow, they die a little every day. It is your job to understand the career path for all your key employees. And do whatever you can, within the boundaries of reality, to help them achieve it.
You need to meet one on one, in an unstructured way, with all your best people at least once a quarter. Quietly and ask them what is frustrating them about their job. What they want to be doing but are not getting to do. Be friendly but blunt. You need to learn. Get it out of them.
You may think if you have drinks together or socialize together that you will know if they are happy. But you will not. Even if people complain in those contexts, it will be general complaints. You will not learn or know, what your top people need to find their growth path at your company. Where they feel stalled out and frustrated. You have to ask.
The funny thing about communication is that it is as much about the words you say, as it is about the tone of your voice combined with eye contact, hand gestures, body positioning and even touch.
A large percentage of the meaning we derive from communication is derived from the non-verbal cues the other person gives. So, if you only meet virtually with your team, much of your message and their response to it may be lost. Face time, however scarce, is an immensely important factor in communicating well and establishing trust. If you are managing employees in remote locations, try to meet with them in person on a regular basis maybe not monthly but at least 2 to 3 times per year.
Now by the time they take another job, it is too late. Even if a raise would work then, which it will not, the relationship is damaged at that point anyway.
But it is not necessarily too late when they start to interview. It may be, in its own way, a plea of exasperation as much as anything else. If you can fix whatever is at issue, you can usually keep him or her.
This seasoned engineer should not have had a five-figure salary, even if it made sense in a historical context. Pay market or above, as soon as you can. It is a sign of respect. And most of the best ones will not ask. They will just eventually get frustrated and leave.
You have to get compensation right, as best you can, all the time. These days, anyone good is going to get a raise to move and maybe a signing bonus on top of that.
The thing is you can not counter. It is too late by that point. Once they tell you they have another offer they are already out the door. A raise will not do it at this point, at least not for the good ones.
If they choose to stay, however, they must commit to being effective, contributing employees. If the manager cannot make this leap, you will need to let the manager go before their negativity impacts the rest of your workplace.