We’ve talked about the elements that led to the Great Resignation as well as the current economic downturn that is resulting in layoffs and budget cuts. But as we’ve been reading in the news, employees in most industries still have the upper hand when it comes to finding new jobs that suit them better. But you, amazing manager, are already keyed into these trends. You care about keeping your employees happy while making your workplace the absolute best it can be—otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this! In fact, great managers (like you) know that a recession is not a retention strategy but in fact, an important time to double down your support of meaningful members of the team. And we have a few key ideas on how to be a part of The Great Retention in 2023.
Here are the top three ways you can help retain your employees in 2023:
Reevaluate employee experience and compensationRetention is a two-way street and conversations around experience and compensation need to take both parties into account. Whereas past annual performance reviews have put pressure on employees to prove they deserve a greater salary or other benefits, it’s time for employers to conversely prove that they are working to keep employees happy. Employers need to stay humble and curious by really listening to an employee’s experience, examining how much work they’re doing, how they might be going above and beyond, as well as areas where the experience needs improvement—whether in the environment, culture, management, or another factor. Then, research how you can change the situation and remain in conversation with the employee to improve their experience. And, of course, if you find a salary that needs to be raised, do it. Many people are leaving jobs for better pay.
Prioritize ongoing career development
Another reason many people are exiting their jobs is due to a lack of advancement opportunities. But if you’re in a position to help them figure out their next moves while retaining them as an employee, why wouldn’t you? Hold stay interviews. Encourage employees to speak their minds on the satisfaction of their work and listen to what they most desire to work on. Hire from within if the career move makes sense for both you and the employee. If now isn’t the right time, offer to pay for educational opportunities (even simple online courses through Udemy, Skillshare, or Coursera) to help the employee develop those skills. In general, all ongoing education and development is beneficial to you both, whether that’s individual learning or company-sponsored events for full teams. Your employees get to upskill while you get to work with more fulfilled employees that bring new ideas to the table. It’s a win-win.
Find ways to improve your benefits
Not all employers can afford to make big switches to expensive healthcare providers, for example, but all employers can make changes to their benefits that put the employees first. For example, if you’re hearing that the hybrid workplace model you created isn’t working, make it optional until you can figure out how to improve it. Make working remotely a forever option. Find a way to offer affordable therapy to your employees. Think about daycare options, help pay off student loans or increase your 401k match. Above all, listen to what your employees are saying and get creative with benefits, depending on what your budget allows.
Pro tip: Supplement your team with freelancers
With a shrinking talent pool, you might feel stuck in trying to find that unicorn who can help you on your next project. Plus, if you’re sensing your team is getting burnt out or is in need of fresh ideas from outside minds, professional freelancers can reinvigorate your workplace. And that’s where we can help! First, talk with your HR and finance teams and gather a budget for a freelancer to help your already stellar team. Then talk with our recruiters about hiring top-level talent.