Professional expertise notwithstanding, recruiting new staff is a long, and difficult process, which is why whenever you lose a member of the team, the repercussions are felt far and wide. Worse still, if you go through a spate of resignations, the overall morale among those left may take a serious hit, thus threatening productivity and potentially turning the swift exit of a few into a mass exodus. To build a strong, healthy recruitment business that is capable of growth and constant improvement, you need to retain your staff. In particular, the top talent you’ve spent years nurturing or significant funds bringing on board, is a business asset that needs ultimate protection.
Hire the right people
Involve your current employees
Pay them well of course,
but……It is the overall remuneration package that is key. Give time and thought to personalized perks and rewards. Make sure they feel part of an overall team, not a hierarchy.
Get them settled in today, next week, month, year
A proper onboarding process will ensure that every employee gets the best possible start when they join the business. It will introduce them to their colleagues, establish business norms and plant the seeds for a relationship that will stand the test of time. By focusing on employee engagement, you’ll ensure that every member of staff understands exactly how their role impacts the business and contributes to the wider goals of the organisation.
Employee satisfaction is an ever-moving target, so don’t wait for formal reviews to deal with issues, tackle them as they arise before they have time to grow. The answer lies in having regular review meetings. These could be every week or every day, if you feel it’s necessary – but they should certainly be far more frequent than once a year.
Equally, employees should feel empowered to reach out and request feedback sessions without being told they’ll need to wait another six months. Create an open culture that values employee feedback above everything else, and there’ll be no place for underlying tensions to hide.
Trust your staff
“It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” Steve Jobs, Apple.
Set goals and give clear guidelines but give employees the space and opportunity to implement their own considered strategies. Celebrate wins, encourage improvement and allow people to embrace accountable based failure. The business will not develop without a strong culture that embraces these types of qualities.
“The competition to hire the best will increase in the years ahead. Companies that give extra flexibility to their employees will have the edge in this area.” Bill Gates.
The number of people working ‘flexible hours’ has increased five-fold in the last two decades, according to an analysis of working trends by the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo). Offering flexible hours, flexible days and working remotely, gives employees the opportunity to achieve a much better work/life balance.
According to The Deloitte Global Millennial Survey 2019, Millennials and Gen Z may stay in a job for more than five years if their employers are flexible about where and when they work. Through offering the option to work flexibly, businesses can access a wider, deeper and more diverse pool of talent to drive increased innovation, creativity and profitability.
Make them feel engaged in the ethos of the company and its future plans and direction
How connected are your existing employees to the business? Are they made to feel like a vital cog or has the relevancy of their role been diluted to a point where they feel unable to make a difference?
Do your employees have the opportunity to take up an equity stake in the company? This can help to create an environment where everyone in the company has shared values and aligned long term goals. Shared ownership not only means employees are more engaged but can also translate into a stronger overall company performance.
Personal and professional growth
Staff will feel valued if they can see that the business actively invests in them. In a digital age this need not be a huge financial investment for the company. It is easy to provide employee training remotely and in bit sized chunks that can be accessed and referred back to in a manner that suits the employees style of learning. You cannot over offer these opportunities or overestimate the value of providing regular training. It clearly demonstrates that the company is invested in their staff and has their best interests at heart.
Note that it is crucial that the leadership team is seen to be equally benefitting from similar personal and professional development. It sends a clear and positive message to the company.
Simple really! As the Ex Chair and CEO responsible for one of America’s greatest ever business turnarounds said:
“Employees are a company’s greatest asset – they’re your competitive advantage. You want to attract and retain the best; provide them with encouragement, stimulus, and make them feel that they are an integral part of the company’s mission”
Anne M Mulcahy, Xerox Corporation.
Stephen Grant is a Partner at TAG Capital and previously the founder of Morgan McKinley, a global financial and professional services recruitment company. TAG Capital Partners are specialist providers of advisory services and investment funding to early and mid-stage recruitment companies.