As employees leave their existing jobs, the tidal wave of the Great Resignation refuses to recede. Attrition rates across industries, especially the IT sector, have been peaking at record highs in the last few quarters.
The accelerated technological transformation by the global pandemic has spurred a demand for tech talent that continues to outmatch the supply. According to Gartner, the attrition rate has inflated from 10 percent in 2020 to 20 percent in 2021, with some IT companies battling rates as high as 30 percent.
At a time like this, HR leaders worldwide are scrambling to retain their best-performing talent while continuously scouting for their replacements. Organizations across the globe are losing their top talent to better-paying, engaging and culturally attractive businesses. Which raises the question: How can organizations build a resilient talent retention strategy to brave the Great Resignation and win the War for Talent?
Begin retention from recruiting
Most organizations fail to recognize that retention starts from recruiting, right from when the application comes in until the employee is successfully onboarded. Firstly, HR teams must identify candidates who align with the organizational culture and are willing to stay the course. Secondly, the organization should create an exceptional onboarding experience for candidates so identified. According to a research, an effective onboarding process can improve talent retention by 82 percent. Blending employees into the work culture, educating them about their responsibilities and helping them build meaningful connections can provide them with a wholesome onboarding experience.
Provide incentives, recognition & rewards
In a fiercely competitive talent market where recruiters don’t hesitate to poach the best talent, organizations need to offer their employees more than compensation and benefits. Monetary incentives for staying, recognition for their efforts and rewards for their results can be a competitive differentiator when it comes to talent retention. According to stats- employees whose managers consistently acknowledge their work can reduce turnover by 31 percent. Incentives can come in the form of bonuses, pay raises and health benefits. At the same time, performance awards, recognition by leadership, corporate gifts etc., can help employees feel recognized and rewarded for their efforts.
Offer opportunities for personal & professional development
According to a survey, 70 percent of employees would leave their jobs for an organization offering better learning and development. It is only natural for employees to leave a job that doesn’t provide learning, career-advancing and personal growth opportunities. By providing learning and development opportunities, organizations can prove their commitment towards employees’ long-term career paths. This can include training programs, higher education, personal mentorships and leadership development, among others. Consequently, employees will feel more valued and engaged and organizations can also benefit from their enhanced skills and improved productivity.
Cultivate a positive organizational culture
Since employees spend nearly half their day on the job, it is vital for them to have a positive and balanced work culture. A positive organizational culture can boost employee performance, productivity, engagement and even retention. Strong and approachable leadership that employees can trust, team collaboration, diversity and inclusion, strong ethical values and behaviour and an active reward system can help organizations build a positive work culture. This can be game-changing for retaining talent as well as attracting talent. Employees want to work in an organization with balanced work culture and a strong employer brand.
Offer flexible working options
According to reports, 76 percent or more workers are experiencing some level of burnout in their jobs. Most HR leaders admit that employee burnout is mainly responsible for employee turnover. At a time when employee satisfaction and engagement are at an all-time low and burnout is peaking, organizations must intervene and address the situation. As more employees demand remote working options, healthy work-life balance and condensed workweeks, organizations should not hesitate to offer flexible working models. Flexible working options will only result in improved employee productivity, performance, satisfaction, well-being and retention.
The Bottom Line
As talent markets evolve and become global, talent retention is becoming a global phenomenon experienced by even the most successful organizations. Employee turnover is inevitable, but organizations that recognize the problem, address why people are leaving and prepare to make efforts can come up with successful talent retention strategies. The years following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic have been challenging for organizations and employees alike. By providing employees with healthy work culture, fair compensation and reward system, trustworthy leadership, consistent recognition, learning and development opportunities and flexible working options, organizations can reverse talent attrition to attraction and retention.
(Yogita Tulsiani is MD & Co-founder, iXceed Solutions--a global tech-recruiter provider)