Employment Life Cycle: The Retention Factor #EWS2014

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I’ve been partnering with my friends at Spherion to share some information from their 2014 Emerging Workforce Study; see below for full disclosure details.

One thing we all strive for is to create a linkage between our talent programs and strategies and key organizational outcomes.

But sometimes, even as we scramble about tracking data and rolling out new initiatives, we don’t pay sufficient attention to the ‘voice’ of our own employees. Crazy isn’t it?

That’s why I found the data released in the study to be interesting in what was uncovered regarding the advocacy, retention and leadership phases of the employment life cycle. (Check out the full infographic for some very interesting information.)

The thing is that even as we dash about talking about our employees as ‘brand advocates’ and ‘ambassadors for organizational culture’ we are often lacking a true connection of understanding between employers and employees.

Sometimes, or so it appears, we just drop the ball!

When reading through the study some of the findings around the issue of retention were particularly interesting to me:

  • Employers believe the most important aspects for worker retention include the management climate (89%), an employee’s relationship with his or her supervisor (85%) and the culture and work environment (81%).
  • However, workers feel financial compensation (78%), benefits (76%) and growth and earnings potential (71%) will influence whether they continue to work at a company.

There’s kind of a glaring disconnect there! The question needs to be asked “are you – HR leader/practitioner/C-suite executive – focusing on the right things in your particular organization?” It seems that we discuss retention and turnover and the need to ‘hire the right talent’ all the time – yet – according to study results only 23% of employers say turnover/retention is their top HR concern.

Are we tossing out our hard-earned and tenured employees by failing to just talk to them? Listen to them? Do we then throw our hands up in the air and move onto the topic of “oh well, I guess we need to open some reqs and recruit the right people!”

Maybe…just maybe…the right people are directly under your our noses, all along… Hmmm…?

The question to ask – and this is how it all wraps together – is “are we treating our current staff members in the right way?”  Here’s a telling piece of information from the study:

“workers rate the level of customer service their employer provides to external customers higher than the way the company treats them.”  (the employees!)

Somewhat sobering.

It’s wooing and chasing the popular girl/guy. it’s landing the first date. It’s entering a relationship. And then neglecting the fact that romance needs to continue; even for the couples that hit their Silver Anniversary.

Time to take a look at the entire Employee Life Cycle. Am I right HR?

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Disclosure Language:

Spherion partnered with bloggers such as me for their Emerging Workforce Study program. As part of this program, I received compensation for my time. They did not tell me what to purchase or what to say about any idea mentioned in these posts. Spherion believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. Spherion’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.

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