Battling a wave of employee turnover? Here are 6 ways to turn the tide



Employee turnover is a key operational concern for any organisation, especially during times of economic uncertainty. Andrew Morris, Director at Robert Half explains six effective retention strategies that you can establish to turn the tide if you’re facing employee turnover.


A certain amount of employee turnover is to be expected within any organisation, and it can occasionally be beneficial. But if many of your brightest and most productive employees are leaving, the resulting impact can be more than just financial – it can also adversely affect employee morale and the company's image.

A bad boss is often cited as a major driver for an employee deciding to leave, but the reasons can vary, from lack of career opportunities to poor alignment with the role. If this is a challenge that your business is facing, here are six ways to reduce turnover and improve employee engagement and loyalty.

Encourage connections


It’s important for employers to not only encourage, but value the benefit of a having a united team who enjoy working alongside each other. Contrary to more traditional views of the workspace, having friends in the office can make work more fun, creates team spirit and boosts productivity – some of the cornerstones of a loyal organisation.

Make sure the role fits the candidate


Research by Robert Half found that workers who say there is not a strong match between them and their employers are the most likely to leave their jobs within a year. To address this earlier on, start by providing candidates with an accurate picture of the job during the hiring process. By clearly describing to applicants what an open position entails, you reduce the risk that they will end up feeling unchallenged or disappointed once on the job.

Plan beyond the honeymoon period


Satisfaction levels tend to peak for staff during their first year with a new employer. Reduced happiness and increased stress after this “honeymoon” period often arises as the result of aspects of the job that at first appeared novel and interesting losing their appeal. To reduce employee turnover, it's crucial that you measure job satisfaction on an ongoing basis, and use this information to set achievable retention targets. Questions might include:

  • Do you still feel challenged in the role?

  • What do you enjoy most about your job?

  • Do you feel your skills are being fully utilised?


Give employees room to grow


An important factor for both career growth and staff retention that is sometimes overlooked by employers is empowerment – which means giving employees leeway to work on their own with minimal direction from above. This helps them to develop critical skills that will advance their careers and identify their passions within your organisation. The key is to find the right balance, such as encouraging team members to stretch their problem-solving skills by taking smart, strategic risks. But also make it known that you are available to offer input and support so that they don’t find themselves floundering alone.

Offer a better work-life balance


Employee turnover is less likely to be a problem if you can offer a reasonable level of flexibility within an employee’s role. Your organisation can accommodate for personal commitments and circumstances through allowing flexible work arrangements for staff. This communicates to your team that you’re willing to support them when personal challenges occasionally arise.

Make sure employees feel valued


Everyone wants to be rewarded and recognised for a job well done. And you don't have to break the bank to do so – it's simply about showing staff that you appreciate their hard work and dedication. Make sure that your entire team hears your praise and feedback – not just less-experienced employees who are still learning the ropes. Staff are more likely to stick around if they know that the work they’re contributing is valued.

Any level of employee turnover is not to be overlooked


It's important to keep in mind that career goals change. Check-in regularly with employees to talk about the evolution of their objectives and potential avenues to help them get there. A few simple steps can make all the diffference - so make sure you recognise good performance,  that you provide meaningful work, and that you nurture an inclusive and positive workplace culture. Staff will be happier, more productive and far more apt to stay with your company.
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Andrew Morris

Robert Half

Director – QLD, NSW and New Zealand

During Andrew Morris's time with Robert Half, he has held a number of high level positions in both Australia and Hong Kong. He uses his knowledge, expertise and experience of the Australian and Asian recruitment markets to offer clients,...

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