3 Employee Retention Best Practices

We’ve all faced retention struggles: turnover, absenteeism, low morale and sluggish productivity. But if you already offer competitive compensation, what else can you do to make employees want to stay? Employees join your company to make a living, but stay for the recognition. Recognition is that little something extra that gives people a good feeling—about themselves and their employer. Giving recognition alone won’t do the job—how you give it can determine your success rate. Here are the most effective employee retention best practices that reinforce productive behaviors and deepen job satisfaction. Implement these best practices and you’ll have a complete set of tools to make work rewarding for your team.

1. Make sure appreciation starts at the top

A key employee retention best practice is to prioritize employee appreciation. Optimizing how you give recognition starts at the top. All managers and leaders must recognize employees—from senior management down to supervisors. Employees often say they aren’t recognized enough by those who oversee them, and as the old saying goes, people don’t leave companies—they leave managers.

Make sure your entire management team understands why giving recognition is important, and then give them an easily usable tool that enables them to give recognition quickly and easily. Once the workforce sees that your entire management team is appreciative and shows a positive attitude, it will generate goodwill and job satisfaction.

2. Get everyone involved

Recognition shouldn’t stop with leadership. You want to engage everyone at your firm, including people who are in base- or entry-level positions. This means giving them the means of giving recognition and sharing their ideas. Because when employees thank coworkers for a job well done, those employees take ownership of their own job roles. Talk about empowerment!

Including everyone in your recognition program will increase your chances of success. It will show people how their work contributes to a greater mission. It unites the workforce, sending the message: “We’re all in this together.”

Atop of recognition as an employee retention best practice, make feedback an activity everyone participates in. According to Achievers’ Employee Retention and Engagement Report, 90 percent of workers said that they are more likely to stay at a company that takes and acts on feedback. Employee voice builds trust in management and strengthens relationships across teams. Implement a listening platform that enables everyone to give feedback and join in company-wide conversations.

You can use an employee feedback tool that allows people’s ideas to be shared and heard. You can encourage employees to participate in pulse surveys or workplace chatbots. Meanwhile, enabling people to give feedback from anywhere using their mobile devices will increase the likelihood of their participation. The easier the user experience is, the more people will get engaged in your initiatives.

employee retention best practices

3. Recognize every day

How often should you give recognition? Every day!

Recognition is positive reinforcement directly correlated with an increase in performing desired behaviors. Behavior theory has shown that the more frequently people receive this positive reinforcement, the more they will work hard to try and win it.

Make sure you use a recognition platform that enables frequent recognition. Don’t just give it weekly, monthly, or quarterly. Exercise frequent recognition. Frequent recognition will get you the best results possible, so integrate it into your everyday work life. And, you can always use a platform that enables you to measure the frequency of recognition, helping to ensure your program’s success.

Also, let’s not forget that “lack of recognition” is the third biggest reason people say they are or would consider leaving their jobs and organizations that give frequent recognition also are 41 percent more likely to see increased employee retention.

What success looks like

If you want to see what successful application of these employee retention best practices looks like, look no further than Quest Diagnostics. This nation-wide clinical laboratory tests patient samples for healthcare, processing almost a half a million tests a night. These diagnostic insights give patients a deeper understanding of the state of their health. But to do this important work on such a large scale Quest Diagnostics must have a motivated and engaged workforce.

Quest partnered with Achievers’s to implement its award-winning recognition platform. With it, Quest has been able to build a comprehensive culture of recognition that engages people at all levels of the organization, no matter where they are across the nation. They’re able to give recognition frequently and drive home the need for excellent job performance.

As a result, 100 percent of their managers and supervisors now give recognition on nearly a daily basis. Quest found that managers who used the platform to give recognition lowered workforce attrition around 25 percent. This has built a positive culture that makes employees feel empowered, valued, and happy to come to work every day. In fact, the platform has enabled members of Quest’s management and workforce to give 1.2 million recognitions over the course of six years. Imagine what 1.2 million recognitions could do to motivate your workforce.

Quest + Achievers: Employee Engagement Partners

Another success story features Meijer, a family-owned superstore based out of the U.S. Midwest. Meijer implemented a recognition solution to engage their 70,000 team members and help the company achieve their core business goals – one business goal being “retaining top talent.” The loss and replacement of valued employees is an expensive challenge for all organizations. Comparing recognition rates between current team members and team members who had left Meijer, those who stayed at Meijer received significantly higher recognition rates on average than those who left. One surprising result was that people who chose to leave Meijer were receiving statistically identical rates of recognition as those who were asked to leave the organization. Together, these results suggest that recognition is important to retaining valued employees, even if employees don’t call it out as the primary reason for their departure.

Start practicing employee retention best practices

If you’re not using all of these employee retention best practices, it may be a contributing factor to your retention woes. The quickest way to implement all of these best practices is to use powerful software that makes it easy to recognize people throughout your organization.

Best practices for employee retention

An employee recognition platform offers all the functionality you need to recognize and reinforce key behaviors that drive your organization’s success. With it, you can complete your employee retention tool kit, and offer a great workplace that makes people want to remain with your firm throughout their careers.

Do you need help putting these best practices to work for you? Then give us a call at (844) 418-5972 , or request a demo of Recognize, Achievers’ award-winning employee success platform. With it, you can offer an attractive workplace that has everything talented workers are looking for.

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Profile image of author: Kellie Wong

Kellie Wong was a Senior Content Marketing Manager at Achievers.


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