It’s no secret that many businesses are struggling to find and keep good employees. A common refrain is that this is due to a strong economy and low unemployment rate. And these factors are most certainly at play. But at the end of the day, employees choose to stay or leave for a variety of reasons, and experience plays a large role in it.
Is there a way to make your organizational turnover magically disappear? No. But there are really just two basic steps to recruiting and retaining great employees:
- Figure out what they want
- Try your hardest to provide it
If you want to hang onto your best people, it serves you well to find out what they value and begin to shape your employee experience around those key things.
What do employees care about?
Don’t get stuck in the mindset that a paycheck is the only thing that matters. Yes, compensation is important. And it still ranks near the top of the list when it comes to reasons to take or leave a new position. But today’s employees care about a whole lot of things. And unlike during the recession, they aren’t afraid to venture out looking for new opportunities that provide them.
If you want some quick answers from employee satisfaction research and studies, we’ve got you covered. And here’s a summary of 10 things that show up time and again on lists of things employees want and need from their employers to be happy and satisfied at work.
- Respect — It goes both ways. Hint: Fair, honest, and respectful treatment of all employees at all levels has become a basic expectation. This includes the topic of inclusiveness and diversity in the workplace.
- Reasonable Compensation – Employees will accept lower salaries in exchange for other meaningful things, but at the end of the day they need to feel valued AND be able to make rent. If you think they’re valuable, clearly demonstrate it by reflecting their value in their paycheck.
- A Benefits Package – Healthcare is becoming a larger driver of job choice and satisfaction. Today’s job seekers are expecting to see benefits information listed up front in job postings, and they are using that information to make career decisions.
- Employee Development – Dead end jobs are so yesterday! If your employees can’t see a path for the future within your organization, they’ll start looking elsewhere.
- Flexibility – Employees are balancing a variety of responsibilities, both at work and at home. If you can create a work environment that allows employees to take care of their personal needs, they’ll feel seen and valued.
- Work Life Balance – More and more people are prioritizing a healthy balance of work and rest. Your staff is willing to work hard, but they can’t (and won’t) do it 24 hours a day. Respect their time away from work, and expect them to use their vacation days and weekends. Maybe even provide them with a discounted gym membership. Healthy, happy employees are productive and engaged employees. Win – win!
- Acknowledgement – Feeling valued and appreciated is critical to keeping your team happy. This doesn’t have to mean constant praise or raises. But they need to feel that their work is important and that they are valued both as people and contributors. Make recognition a core piece of your company culture.
- Independence – Employees want to feel like their ideas matter and that they are capable of running projects and making decisions. Micromanagement will crush employee innovation, creativity, and initiative. It will also destroy engagement and morale. Give you employees the chance to lead and they’ll rise to the occasion.
- Collaboration – An environment of support and teamwork is far superior than working alone or in a vacuum. Even the most independently motivated workers want to know there’s a capable team behind them they can count on.
- Coaching – Developing your employee skill sets doesn’t just help you and your company. It shows your employees that they are worth investing in. And it keeps their work from becoming monotonous, boring, or stagnant. Help them see a future at your company by providing them opportunities to grow.
Time to evaluate
Is your organization committed to providing some of these things for your employees? If not, it’s time to start. Putting in time to make sure your employees feel welcomed and appreciated will provide exponential returns. You’ll soon find yourself rewarded with happier employees who are committed to your cause and who will run through walls to make it happen!
Need a better ROI on your corporate employee benefits? At Raffa, we’re not interested in finding you a policy solution for this year. We’ll create a long-term, employee benefit strategy designed to help you become an employer of choice. Want to build a better future for both your business and your employees? Get in touch with Raffa.
Photo by Aleksandr Davydov