Losing talent can really hurt a company in several ways. It costs money to advertise job listings, train employees on their new roles and it also increases the workload for current employees who are waiting until the role is filled. In a new study by my company and Beyond.com, we found that 51 percent of companies report that the cost of training and development is the highest when hiring millennials. When you factor in older generations, the costs start adding up and it can be detrimental to a company that doesn’t take retention seriously. Employee happiness has a direct impact on productivity and revenue too. A study by Dashburst shows that maintaining happy employees could cut labor costs in the US by over $2 billion. Here are a few reasons why employees leave their jobs and how companies can keep them:
1. There’s no company vision. Employees want to see that a company is in business to do something other than make a profit. They want a company to support communities and have an impact on the world. They want to know what they do every day is helping someone else or solving big problems. Managers need to explain why the job is important and how the job is impacting the end customer and potentially the world at large. If there’s no vision behind the company, employees will be lost and not engaged so they’ll leave you for another company that has a strong vision. For instance, Nike’s vision statement is “To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world.” As an employee, the work you do is helping accomplish this vision and you can see it coming true by looking at athletes that wear Nike shoes and clothing.
2. They don’t get along with the people they work with. If you don’t like your manager and your co-workers, it’s not only hard to succeed but you won’t want to stay there. Of course, you can make light of the situation by changing departments or by sorting out your differences with them, but in most cases, you will want to leave and enter a better environment. Companies should hire more for cultural fit than traditional qualifications to get the right employees in the right groups so they don’t leave. A boss is an integral part of an employee’s day and without a good relationship with them, you won’t get the feedback and support required for advancement.
3. They aren’t given work they consider meaningful. Employees want to use their true talents and if they aren’t able to, they don’t feel like they are getting enough out of work. People don’t want to do busy or transactional work, but in most cases they have to. Companies need to balance busy work with work that plays directly into an employee’s values and interests. When employees get bored, they start to look at other options and most of the time it’s outside of their current company.
4. The company is bad at communicating future plans. Employees don’t just care where the company is now but where it’s heading in the future. A lot of companies forget this and don’t end up explaining, in detail, to their employees what the upcoming products are and how they are part of it. Companies also have to explain to employees what their professional futures could look like. They need to set expectations so that an employee knows that if they stay for 5 years, they can become a manager and what skills they will need to get to that level. Employees shouldn’t have to make assumptions for their career path – companies should already have it in mind.