Head’s Up: What kind of a Life Line Do you need to Throw Employees So they don’t Jump Ship?

Will your company be able to avoid a brain drain when the economy improves?

How can you, as a manager, retain your talent?

Business Week, November 16th Issue reported that employees are holding on for dear life during the recession. However, pent up frustration with their jobs, may mean that there will be a massive exodus once the economy turns around.
Read article:

A Watson Wyatt survey found that the engagement or loyalty of top performers has dropped a whopping 25% in just one year.
Read Survey

Spherion Staffing Solutions found a huge discrepancy between what managers thought would retain employees and what employees actually indicated they wanted in order to remain on the job.
Read more

Managers thought they were the most important element in an employee’s decision to stay or leave. However in the Spherion research, employees reported that pay and benefits, or lack thereof, were the major reasons why they would jump ship when they had the opportunity to do so.

During the recession promotions, compensation and benefits have been frozen. Employees may feel that the only way they can play ‘catch-up’ is by jumping ship and negotiating a better package with a new employer.

But there may be something else that will help managers retain staff when the economy turns around. Employees report they are looking for flexibility… especially Millennials, especially new parents, especially those who care for elderly relatives, especially those considering retirement. Perhaps the company that comes out on top when staff start looking for new opportunities is the company that provides flexible work schedules, telecommuting, or part-time job opportunities.

Now is an opportune time to start experimenting with these options. It would be a great way to show your workforce that even though you cannot raise salaries, you are seeking ways to help support their personal needs. These efforts have no cost or minimal cost associated with them. Even if your entire company does not support these practices, managers can experiment with their own teams and then demonstrate to others in the company the successes they have experienced. If managers are able to retain talent, they may be a role model for other managers in the organization.

Many companies are using flexibility in another way during this recession.
Read more:

Companies are cutting hours in order to avoid layoffs. This strategy can boost morale. Employees who may be anxious about impending pink slips, are relieved when they learn that their employer is doing everything possible to avoid layoffs. By cutting back everyone’s hours, companies save money and demonstrate their caring and compassion. Managers may need to revisit both individual and team goals to determine what is actually a priority to accomplish given that everyone is working fewer hours. Avoiding layoffs can increase employee loyalty and commitment resulting in higher retention rates.
Read more

The estimates for the cost of replacing one mid-level employee ranges from 150%-250% of salary. This estimate does not even reflect the cost of lost institutional knowledge and the time it takes for a new employee to come up to speed.
See research

What’s stopping you from experimenting?

Artemis Management Consultants can help you create an engaging work environment to retain your human capital as the economy improves. Don’t let your talented employees work for the competition. Stop the brain drain.

Barb Miller, President, Artemis Management Consultants and Co-Founder Virtual Connection


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