Employee retention is a big challenge for businesses especially nowadays when remote work is gaining popularity. With opportunities available left and right to people around the glove, it can prove indeed difficult to keep employees loyal.
Difficult, but not impossible, as it were. To be able to understand the main drivers behind employee satisfaction, consider the following stats:
- 75% of the reasons for employee turnover can be prevented
- The number one reason for retention is that employees are not being challenged at work
- 94% of employees would stay longer if a company invested in their learning
- One-third of new hires quit after ca. 6 months
- Each month, 3 to 4.5 million employees quit their job
- 76% of employees who feel their work isn’t valued look for other job opportunities
- The overall turnover rate is 57.3% — 25% is voluntary turnover, 29% is involuntary turnover and 3% for high-performers
What these facts show is, basically, that employee retention may prove quite sustainable provided that a business can provide:
- Regular eLearning options
- Advancement models
- Challenging work that keeps employees happily engaged
Last but not least, different work formats should be made available. With hybrid work models taking over tradition, everyone can find a perfect work opportunity.
Hybrid Work Models
Loosely put, there are six different hybrid work models:
- Almost entirely off premises – mostly remote work with no office space
- Almost entirely on premises – limited remote work, large office space the majority of managers and workers
- Partially remote work, large office space – the majority of managers and workers spend most, but not all, of their time at the office
- Partially remote work, multiple hubs – multiple offices with the workforce dispersed among them
- Multiple microhubs – management and employees are dispersed across small microhubs located in different cities and countries
- Partially remote work, with flexible office space – no permanent offices; rented flex space used for periodic collaboration (but not connectivity)
Picking any of those will help you retain every single employee as everyone will get the chance to pick the work model that suits them best.
Keep in mind that remote work is taking over traditional work rapidly and that many hires won’t even consider a job opportunity if they cannot reap its benefits.
That, however, doesn’t mean that old-school office employees are of a like mind. Hybrid work models are perfect exactly because of that — they offer multiple options.
Employee engagement may have completely different meanings to people working in the office and people working remotely.
In-office employees are often too set in their ways to look forward to rapid changes, but that doesn’t mean they are necessarily happy with their position.
The two common questions you should find answers to are:
Are your employees happy with their roles?
How can you change things, if they aren’t?
The easiest way to get the answers is to rely on anonymous feedback. Anonymity ensures that answers will be honest (in most cases, at least). By listening to employees’ opinions and applying methods to make their work life more pleasant, you’ll also show them that you actually care about them.
When you don’t physically see your team on a daily basis, it’s important to be sure they’re also happy in their roles, by keeping in touch and including them in regular team meetings and activities. Also, consider teachable alternatives and courses that could be beneficial.
Remote workers are familiar with online courses and appreciate the opportunity to learn more as they are resourceful by definition.
Freelancers are often observed as a per-project type of people, but that’s not necessarily true for all of them. In fact, they tend to build a steady client basis and work regularly for companies for extended periods of time.
Unlike in-office employees, freelancers often offer out-of-the-box skills you won’t find in regular team members, so it is important to keep them on board.
If your freelancers come from different geographical locations, set in place cross-cultural training. It will be both fun and greatly appreciated.
Digital nomads may work for different clients but they also may choose to work for a specific company for reasons rather similar to those of freelancers’. What’s more, as long as the company they work for allows remote work, then they can work from literally anywhere.
Digital nomads are specific in that they often choose locales that offer the best foreign tax credits, so don’t be surprised to find them in the most unexpected of places.
To retain digital nomads, you should make an effort to engage them via regular meetings so that they can feel part of the team.
Employee retention is a complex process but it’s definitely worth the fuss. Hybrid work models can help you find the best people for each role but you’ll need to make a plan how to make everyone part of the team.
The key is in providing regular challenges (listen to employee feedback for ideas) and eLearning opportunities and cross-cultural training. In time, everything will fall in place and your business will be more successful for that.