The cost of replacing an employee is anywhere from 16% for hourly workers and up to 213% of the annual salary for highly trained leaders. Low employee engagement and retention are real and costly.

Employee attrition is a commonly used term for losing employees when they resign or retire. It should include when employees become disengaged. However, unlike resigning or retiring, having disengaged leaders is organizationally expensive. Other team members are impacted by what’s happening, and morale and the speed of accomplishing things decrease. 

Organizations are concerned about the lack of key talent and skills available for the future workforce. We also know that team members value development and succession planning more than financial rewards. Employee development increases engagement, which in turn boosts motivation and productivity. And altogether, this can lead to organizational transformation.

However, there’s a disconnect. Organizations want talent, but they may not be articulating what talent is needed or using resources to develop the right talent. This is contrasted with employees wanting development to fuel their growth and their willingness to leave for another organization to get it. All of this impacts organizational growth and organizational performance.

Fortunately, there are strategies to keep team members engaged, improve morale, create a culture of learning, and keep costs lower.

Five Ways to Increase Employee Engagement and Retention

Leaders that recognize employees as key stakeholders and strategic assets actively take steps to address engagement. As a result, engagement can positively affect the organization’s bottom line.

Fine-Tune Your Employee Onboarding Process

According to a Gallup article, only 12% of U.S. employees say their company does a good job with employee onboarding. How well an organization onboards its leaders sets the stage for their tenure.

Good first impressions work both ways. Your hiring managers get their first impressions of potential candidates and make a decision to hire. At the same time, those candidates, many of whom will eventually become employees, formulate their first impressions as well.

The best employee onboarding experiences include steps to make new employees comfortable in their new position. Your goal is to make them want to stay – not to want to jump ship as soon as they come on board.

Conversely, the company should make attempts to ensure the new employee is a good fit for the organization:

  • Assessments provide a window to the candidate’s personality, drivers and motivations, and areas that can be developed. This is important in determining if they are a good fit for your organization.
  • Clearly communicate what success looks like. This allows the new employee to understand the role they will fill and have something to work toward.
  • Create meaningful networks within the organization. This should include a peer mentor for the first 90 days to orient the person to the organization’s culture.
  • Define the current role and responsibilities. Talk about potential career paths so they can see how they can progress through the organization.

Emphasize Developing Leaders

The rate of change needed by organizations seems to be increasing! Foster a culture of learning, professional growth, and development by linking organizational goals to learning and development competencies and outcomes. This can help them consider their employment at your company to be continually improving with fulfilling experiences.

“Organizations that have made a strategic investment in employee development,” Gallup finds, “report 11% greater professional profitability and are twice as likely to retain their employees.” People tend to leave companies where they feel they don’t have development opportunities. If employees feel they can’t develop and improve, they are even more likely to leave than if they had bad management.

See our article “How Establishing A Culture of Learning Creates a Strategic Advantage 

To combat this, some ways to emphasize professional development are:

  • Give employees personal assessments so they can know their strong points and weak points, which they can work toward improving.
  • Prioritize developing skills, which can help employees advance and improve your company’s productivity and organizational growth.
  • Keep employees involved in the organizational goals and management activities, making them part of the overall success of the organization.
  • Provide learning and knowledge-sharing opportunities, which can diversify employee skills and set them up for success.
  • Identify key skills and experiences needed that are tied to organizational goals.

Adjust Your Company Culture

An organization’s culture is its secret sauce to excellent performance. A good work environment that fosters both personal development and good leadership is essential for keeping attrition rates low. A successful company culture attracts motivated and more engaged employees, resulting in a 33% increase in revenue.

An organization can start by identifying the behaviors and values it wants to support its mission and organizational goals. When the actions of the organization’s leaders are readily identified by employees, then organizational culture takes form. This can include:

  • Creating a sense of purpose for the employees.
  • Providing positive and constructive feedback.
  • Collaborating to solve problems across functional lines.
  • Living the stated values to support the organization’s vision.

Offer Hybrid Work

Hybrid work is here to stay and organizations that embrace it have a wider range of talent to choose from. For example, if the company offers employees the opportunity to work remotely, it can save employees the commute. In turn, this may make employees more productive and more satisfied with their roles.

At the same time, remote work creates challenges like keeping employees engaged. An even greater challenge is how a manager leverages flexible working arrangements in a way that harnesses employee creativity, increases collaboration, and creates greater team cohesion. 

Measure Employee Engagement Through Surveys

The employee experience can be better understood through employee surveys. The results of these surveys can help to address certain issues that are important to your teams. Survey results should be added to your attrition analytics to get a larger attrition data set. Then, use the data to develop plans to address problems such as employee burnout, unhappiness, and lack of faith in leadership.

Employee engagement surveys should be owned by the functional and team leaders. And the results should include actions where all team members can contribute to improving the outcomes.

How to Use Employee Attrition Analytics to Understand Employee Engagement

Use the data from your surveys and other sources to fine-tune the problem areas and spur organizational development and change. Determine why some of your team members are leaving. Then, find a way to fix the issues and lower the churn rate. Use this employee attrition analysis to improve your operations and succeed at keeping top talent and keeping a productive workforce.

Employee engagement and retention affect the bottom line. High engagement is tied to lower absenteeism, lower turnover, increased productivity, higher customer loyalty, and higher profitability.

To help you develop strategies for retaining your employees, bluSPARC™ offers customized, individualized leadership development coaching. This coaching can be the catalyst you need for improving employee retention and decreasing employee attrition – leading to organizational transformation.

Our leadership coaching programs are offered online for efficiency and convenience. Our proprietary leadership competency assessment, curated micro-learning, and premier coaching are all integrated on a digital coaching platform to form a comprehensive leadership development system. Reach out to our team to get started.