Once the COVID-19 pandemic began, an exodus occurred – millions of American workforce employees quit their jobs. The event is now referred to as the Great Resignation. Even though hiring is recovering, employers are still concerned about retaining employees.
Post-pandemic employee turnover provides unique challenges for employers. How can companies meet the needs of their employees to keep them satisfied? What are some strategies to reduce employee turnover in 2023?
An overview of the Great Resignation
The U.S. economy is still reeling from the height of the pandemic. Despite recovery efforts, employers still try to hire talented candidates in a tight labor market.
Since 2021, the Great Resignation has become an increasingly popular trend in the American workplace. According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), over 4 million workers quit their jobs in December 2021.
There are various reasons why employees are leaving their organizations. Some decided to transition to another industry, while others became entrepreneurs and started businesses themselves. Companies need to understand why people are leaving their jobs so they can find feasible solutions to prevent turnover.
Data from Pew Research Center includes the percentage of employees who leave for specific reasons, including:
- Low pay (64%)
- No opportunity for advancement (63%)
- Feeling disrespected at work (53%)
Childcare issues, a lack of work flexibility, poor benefits and working too many or too few hours are other reasons people leave their jobs. The pandemic caused many professionals to reflect on their careers, especially whether or not they’re satisfied with their roles.
Quiet quitting and post-pandemic employee turnover in 2022
Quiet quitting, as its name suggests, is when employees decide to put in the bare minimum at work, almost as if they actually left. Various negative effects of quiet quitting can impact an organization, its leaders and its employees.
Employees who are unsatisfied with their role might build feelings of resentment towards others, fail to keep up with their workloads and be less inclined to work well on a team. If several employees within an organization decide to quit quietly, the company’s productivity levels will inevitably drop, costing the employer time and money.
How to retain employees in the post-pandemic era
Every company wants to avoid employee turnover, especially regarding quality candidates. Finding talented, reliable and hard-working employees is no easy feat, but retaining them after a global pandemic and looming recession is a significant obstacle employers face.
Here are some retention strategies employers can use to keep the best employees from quitting in the post-pandemic workplace.
1. Pay competitive wages
Some 64% of employees quit their job due to low pay. Unfortunately, an employee’s salary greatly impacts their well-being, work-life balance and job satisfaction.
As the new year approaches, millions of people are cutting their spending to account for inflation, the rising cost of living, and higher interest rates. To live comfortably, employers need to pay their employees competitive wages.
2. Improve benefits and perks
Like an employee’s compensation, the benefits and perks they receive on the job can determine whether or not they remain in their role. For example, companies that fail to provide decent health insurance for their workers might experience higher turnover rates than organizations with good health insurance benefits.
Employers can look at their current benefits and perks, consider what they want as employees, and make improvements. One perk many employers are providing is remote work locations. A recent survey found that remote work positively impacted 70% of employees’ well-being.
3. Create opportunities for advancement
Another statistic mentioned above suggests employees often quit due to a lack of opportunities for advancement. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce website has a detailed article explaining how to offer these opportunities for employees to reduce employee turnover in 2022.
Every professional wants to grow their skills and take on more responsibility as they progress. Companies should encourage employees to pursue and apply for other jobs, whether a promotion or a lateral shift.
4. Recognize employees for a job well done
Employees want to feel valued and appreciated at their company. Employers might appreciate their team of employees, but does it matter if employees never get a pat on the back? Everyone within a company wants to be told they’re doing a good job.
Employers can keep their employees by recognizing their accomplishments. Company leaders can also share small tokens of appreciation, such as handing out small gift cards to a coffee shop or giving annual holiday bonuses.
5. Make work fun
Depending on the industry, going to work isn’t inherently fun. While some jobs can be very fun for employees, others are less exciting and require long hours of acting professionally.
All work and no play can contribute to poor employee morale and low satisfaction. Employers should try to incorporate fun company activities into their schedules every now and then to keep employees engaged.
Retaining employees to stay profitable
Losing high-performing employees is something every employer fears. No company wants to lose its best sales specialist or most compassionate HR director, but it can happen.
The Great Resignation and post-pandemic workplace are two challenges employers face going into 2023. To remain profitable and improve employee retention, consider using some of the strategies and tips outlined above.