Tag: staff retention

Planning staffing levels also appeared high on the list

According to a survey of CFOs by Gartner Inc, hiring and retaining staff are the most difficult tasks facing Chief Financial Officers over the next 12 months. The tight labor market is one of several factors – including inflation and supply chain disruptions – that are set to challenge corporate profitability through 2023.

Gartner surveyed 234 CFOs in July, and 54% cited hiring and retaining enough workers as their top challenge. It was followed by forecasting (36%) and cutting the right costs (35%).

Marko Horvat, VP, Research, in the Gartner finance practice said: “The data from CFOs align with what we are hearing from HR leaders, namely that competition for talent is expected to become fiercer over the medium term and retaining that talent will become more challenging. CFOs will need to deploy a variety of strategies to ensure critical roles remain filled while also protecting margins.”

Also on the list, “planning staffing levels across the company” was cited by 21% of CFOs.

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50% of businesses are losing customers due to staff shortages 

New research by WorkJam has revealed that almost 50% of the business leaders surveyed have been understaffed for 5-6 months, while 36% have been understaffed for 3-4 months, and 78% are currently understaffed. A further 48% have lost customers because of staff shortages.

The survey of CxOs, Directors, and VPs in industries including retail, manufacturing, consumer goods, transporting, and warehousing found that for 30% of businesses, the shortages have amounted to between 16 and 20% of their workforce in the last 12 months. An additional 26% lost 11-15% of their staff during the same period.

There is little doubt that these results seriously impact day-to-day performance while putting additional strain on the employees left behind.

The survey also found that for 64% of businesses, churn levels have stayed the same (33%) or are somewhat higher (31%) than in the previous 12 months, with little chance of imminent improvement. In addition, more than half (53%) of those surveyed did not expect changes to hiring issues over the next 12 months. Fifty percent also expected retention issues to remain the same.

Reasons for employee churn included

  • Employees feel that their hours are too long or there wasn’t enough flexibility in their position (25%)
  • Diversity and inclusion issues (16%)
  • Dissatisfaction with salary (14%)
  • Dissatisfaction with benefits (10%)

Fifty-one percent of the survey respondents want to solve retention and hiring issues by providing better employee perks or benefits. A further 30% are investing in HR or frontline technology, and 27% are investing in learning and development.

Mark Williams, Managing Director EMEA of WorkJam, commented: “We’re in the midst of a global recruitment crisis. While it’s no secret that key sectors have been struggling to find and retain talent since the start of the pandemic – if not before – the figures revealed by our survey really put the problem into context. And the difficulty is that the issue is self-sustaining. Churn puts additional pressure on existing employees, increasing the likelihood that they, in turn, will seek employment elsewhere, again heaping pressure on those left behind.”

“Executives are faced with finding solutions that will aid retention and recruitment without necessitating a price hike in the middle of the cost-of-living crisis. According to our research, a quarter of businesses have already had to raise their prices. But this carries the risk of further deterring customers. It’s a difficult balance to strike.”

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Support must encompass all four pillars of health and well-being

A recent survey among 500 HR decision-makers in the UK has revealed that health and well-being support is essential in recruiting and retaining talent.

The survey, undertaken for Towergate Health & Protection, found that

  • 42% said supporting the health and well-being of staff is key to retaining talent
  • 31% said health and well-being support is a major factor in attracting new staff
  • 18% of employers said that insufficient health and well-being support impacts their ability to recruit and retain people
  • 26% of employers agreed that support for mental health had increased most in importance
  • 19% felt that the overall health and well-being package had grown most in importance

The research also indicated that the support on offer needs to be wide and holistic. Other important factors included:

  • Social interaction through work (11%)
  • Communication of support offered (9%)
  • Support for financial health (9%)
  • An environmental, social, and governance (ESG) strategy (8%)

The survey results, together with anecdotal evidence from Towergate Health & Protection’s client base, showed that while implementing a strong health and well-being programme is essential, communication of the programme must be wide and easily accessed and managed by employees and employers to make a difference.

The research also revealed that all four pillars of health and well-being – emotional, physical, financial, and social – are vital to adding the most value to recruitment and retention.

Debra Clark, Head of Specialist Consulting, Towergate Health & Protection, says: “The research supports our anecdotal evidence of the wider reaches of health and wellbeing support, and why it is so important that employers have a clear and well-communicated strategy. The wider the health and well-being support offered, the better the array of talent it will attract and retain.”

“Employees’ needs and demands have shifted dramatically since before the pandemic struck. We have all had a realignment of priorities, and employers need to match these if they are to attract and retain the best staff, which is only going to become more important.”

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What can companies do to retain talent instead?

As the frantic search for talent continues in the UK, new research has shown that 95% of UK employers are focusing their recruitment efforts on bringing back former employees to fill vacant roles.

Organisations can reduce recruitment and training costs and increase productivity by bringing back “boomerang employees” to fill job vacancies. But this raises a question of what organisations could have done to retain these employees in the first place.

In a recent survey of over 2,000 leaders around the world by HCM vendor Ceridian, the indication is that succession planning provides just such an opportunity for employers, but they might be missing the gap:

  • 88% of respondents report that their company uses succession planning
  • 74% of respondents say that they often or always hire external candidates for leadership roles instead of promoting from within.

Even though 53% of employers provide learning and development opportunities to retain talent in the UK and Ireland, only 38% give flexibility in job roles and responsibilities. A further  42% are pursuing DEI strategies to ensure that they gather different perspectives.

The key to retaining talent and attracting the “boomerang employees” will be to identify key workplace issues and use the tools and technology available to align talent decisions with employee ambitions and company goals.

Steve Knox, VP of Global Talent Acquisition at Ceridian, comments: “Staff retention has become a pain point for businesses with employers looking at increasingly innovative ways beyond pay and benefits to retain employees. With 95% of employers seeking ‘boomerang’ employees to fill their recruitment gaps, one proactive solution is to encourage retention strategies which would see fewer employees leaving organisations to begin with.”

“When key people do leave it’s vital to provide remaining employees with clear career development and ensuring plans are in place for succession when key people do leave are both vital. Ceridian’s 2022 Executive Survey highlights some common succession planning pitfalls, for example where firms might fail to put in place impactful succession planning strategies that put their people and their career development first. With over one third of employees saying career advancement opportunities would convince them to leave their current role, there is much at stake for businesses which don’t give key people a clear career development plan.

“In turn, a data-driven, holistic talent strategy that develops an organisation’s current workforce and positions key people as future leaders, as well as hiring new talent simultaneously to fill the talent pipeline, helps the business’ overall resilience and longevity, as well as bringing a variety of wider benefits to the organisation.”

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Good management key to staff retention following the Great Resignation

New research from people analytics company, Visier, has revealed that 43% of UK employees admit to having quit their jobs due to bad management. A further 53% are currently seeking new roles due to their current manager.

In the study of 2,100 workers, 85% agree that good management is key to their happiness at work. Four in ten said they stayed in jobs longer than they planned because they had good relationships with their managers.

The majority of employees surveyed believe that flexible working is beneficial for both workers (74%) and businesses (69%). But while staff enjoy flexible hours and remote work,  it is clear that lack of face-time has been damaging for employee-manager relationships. The main contributors to this are:

  • Lack of face-to-face meetings (51%)
  • Increased working from home (44%)
  • An over-reliance on emails (44%)

Only 48% of workers are comfortable discussing their personal lives with their managers, indicating that leaders are struggling to build strong relationships with their teams.

Daniel Mason, VP EMEA of Visier, commented: “The old cliché – people don’t leave jobs, they leave managers – rings true, and the pandemic has made it harder for leaders to develop personal relationships with employees.”

“This isn’t a case of leaders becoming bad managers overnight, but instead, they are making difficult decisions with less information available to them.”

“The move to remote and hybrid working has starved managers of the opportunity to observe and meet with team members. Face-to-face interactions and other natural moments to develop a rapport are fewer, so managers should look to enhance their toolkit with data and insights to better understand and anticipate employee needs.”

When asked to identify the most valuable traits of a good manager, the most popular responses were as follows:

  • Treating people well (47%)
  • Listening to workers (47%)
  • Showing respect to all members of staff (47%)

On the other hand, the attributes of a bad manager were:

  • Failure to listen (49%)
  • Being unapproachable (47%)
  • Treating other members of staff differently (43%)
  • Shouting at the team (42%)

The most important factors for happiness in the workplace were:

  • Enjoying their work (45%)
  • Good pay (39%)
  • Good colleagues (35%)

Further data revealed that:

Sixty-two percent of the respondents felt that they currently had a good manager, and 45% believed that they could do the job better themselves. This group was questioned as to how they would improve, and their responses were:

  • 53% said they understood the concerns of other employees
  • 46% would treat all members of staff with equal respect
  • 36% would make an effort to get to know the people they manage better

Mason continues: “Businesses have spent the past few decades using data and other innovations to improve customer relationships and increase revenues. Many organisations are yet to harness these methods to better understand their most important asset – employees.”

“Every organisation already has a wealth of people data scattered throughout. Modern tools and analytics can find and organise this data to generate people insights to help you better understand and manage talent. When these insights are combined with other types of data from across the organisation, the result can drive more impactful business outcomes and unlock the next wave of growth and success.”

With employers struggling to fill vacancies and retain key talent following the Great Resignation, it’s clear that good management is essential to staff retention.

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