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4 Reasons Employees Leave and Recruitment Tips to Keep Them

Feb 24 , 2017

When one person quits, another one often follows. Sometimes, attrition happens in waves, which has far-reaching effects on productivity, company morale and customer relations. It also hits the budget.

The reasons behind an exodus aren't always clear. But you can help ward off some of them by making better hires and watching for these signs that the team you depend on has its eye on the horizon.

#1: A Broken Team Shakes up the Comfortable Dynamic

When one employee leaves, it can send a ripple through the department. Duties shift to other people, increasing their workload. Projects can experience delays. Customer service may suffer. Losing an employee can throw off momentum, which is sometimes enough of a jolt to make other employees think twice about staying put.

What you can do about it:

Build strategies for recruiting and onboarding. A better employer/employee match on the front end improves the odds that employees will stay with the company longer. A recruitment consultancy has the time and resources to focus on high-quality hires. A strong onboarding policy engages employees from the first day to minimize frustrations in the company and with the new hire.

#2: When One Employee Isn't Happy, Others are Probably Unsettled

If one employee isn't happy with their work arrangement, other employees probably feel the same. Lighthouse's leadership and management blog says, "We're social creatures." Chances are, employees talk among themselves about company problems, even if you don't hear the buzz. One person leaving could motivate others to do the same.

What you can do about it:

Feedback can make a measurable difference in lowering attrition rates. Hubspot recommends asking for feedback as well as giving it. But watch out for negative feedback. Gallup says engagement plummets if employers home in on what employees are doing wrong.

Recruitment tips

#3: Many People Stay Open to New Job Opportunities

Workers aren't as loyal as employers think. If a recruitment agency offers them something new, they might jump at the chance. A recent Gallup poll found:

  • 51 percent are actively looking for a new job
  • 49.5 percent aren't engaged at work
  • 16.5 percent are actively disengaged
  • 31 percent changed jobs within the last year
  • 51 percent think the employment climate is right for job hunting
  • 63 percent believe they could find a new job that's at least as good as what they've got

What you can do about it:

Give employees opportunities to grow without leaving. If you don't have an internal referral and development program, start one. According to SHRM, current employees cost less to recruit and take significantly less time to get up to speed. They tend to fit the company culture better than a new outside hire, too. But internal hires are still a fraction of outside hires.

#4: If Friends Arrive Together, They May Leave Together

Lighthouse says "friends are a double-edged sword." Friends probably talk about job offers and what bothers them at work. While referrals can help improve time to hire and quality of hire, remember that friends tend to come and go together. If you rely heavily on referrals, one vacancy could quickly turn into a chunk of open seats.

What you can do about it:

Don't put so many eggs in one basket. There isn't much that an employer can do to sway employees away from friends, especially if they're accustomed to working together. But you can strive for a better balance of hiring sources. Use referrals judiciously.

You can't stop every employee from leaving, not that you'd want to. But you can help curb the tendency for great employees to leave en masse. It begins with hiring the right people and branches out into nurturing them once they're on board.

GDH helps you make the best possible hires based on numerous qualities ranging from cultural fit to specific proficiencies and general compatibility.

If you're ready to build a team that wants to stay put, contact us and learn how we can help.