As organizations are gradually trying to get their business operations back to normal in a post-pandemic world, they are facing a major challenge in the form of a fierce wave of ‘Great Resignation’ that seems to have gripped employees across the world. Millions of employees, ranging from frontline workers to senior executives have already quit their jobs. Studies suggest that another 41% of the global workforce is considering leaving their jobs by the end of this year. Its high time that organizations rethink their employee engagement strategies.
Many experts believe that the COVID-19 pandemic proved to be like a great awakening for employees across the globe. The changes forced upon them during the crises made them question not only what they really want from their employers as compensation and benefits, but also what they need in terms of their day-to-day workplace experience, and their careers as a whole.
Spending time working from home near their loved ones, also made them realize and reevaluate the things that they value the most. Moreover, the response of their employers towards their personal and professional well-being during the crisis helped them to gain a clear understanding of whether or not they are ready to move on to something new.
Most organizations acknowledge the fact that losing employees cost them more than just in financial terms. When employees quit their job, it not only lays to waste the costs of recruiting and training them but also results in the organization losing their valuable expertise and knowledge gained over the years.
Furthermore, it causes a breakdown in the long-term relationships that these employees may have developed with their customers during their time with the organization. Their departure, thus can negatively impact the trust of the customers in the organization and disturb their relationship and motivation to do business with the organization.
Employees retention is also essential to help businesses build a positive employer brand value and assure any prospective candidates that they will be making the right decision by joining them.
Most importantly the ability of organizations to retain their employees helps in maintaining a positive work culture and keeping the entire workforce motivated.
Employee disengagement or lack of employee engagement is at the core of this problem of ‘Great Resignation’. If organizations need to avoid this mass exodus of their employees and its pitfalls, they need to reconsider their current employee engagement strategies. They need to make them relevant and focused towards ensuring retention of their workforce .
Here are the top 7 employee engagement strategies that organizations should implement to improve their retention rates in these challenging times:
Ensuring employee satisfaction is the key to enhancing retention. For this, organizations should work proactively towards fulfilling their needs. in the changing work environment.
Employee needs have changed significantly over the last two years and addressing the same in a timely and appropriate manner can help boost retention. Hence, organizations need to focus on improving the same. For this, they need to develop policies aimed at building a happy, low-stress and growth-oriented work culture.
Employee experience is another critical factor that impacts retention. Most talent management gurus believe that employees today seek safe and secure work environments where they feel respected and valued for their skills and get ample career growth opportunities.
Organizations need to promote open and hassle-free communication between employees and their supervisors, as well as across teams. Investing time and efforts in team-building and social activities, minimizing office politics and gossip, providing access to user-friendly digital and physical infrastructure, etc. are some other aspects that can help in improving employee experience.
Most organizations undermine the significance of seeking regular and frequent feedback from their employees, which can eventually lead to higher employee attrition.
Taking feedback helps organizations to gain a better understanding of their employee needs, understand their issues, and even become aware of those aspects that can maximize employee satisfaction.
However, simply taking feedback may prove ineffective if it is not backed up with timely and meaningful action. Responding to employee feedback appropriately assures them that their views and opinions matter to the organization as do their happiness and satisfaction.
Making the employees feel valued and appreciated is an essential aspect of boosting retention. Employee rewards and recognition go a long way in improving employee engagement and assuring them of being an integral part of the organization’s success story.
Promoting spot recognition and employee appreciation practices assures the members of the workforce that their efforts will not go unnoticed in the organization. This in turn motivates them to improve their productivity and performance and contribute to the organization’s growth and success.
During the pandemic, the concept of remote and hybrid working has gained much popularity. Providing employees with greater flexibility in terms of the work timings and work location ensures greater engagement and satisfaction.
It also helps in improving their work-life balance, which has emerged as a key criterion for most employees for deciding to stay on or move on. Investing in the right digital tools and technologies can help promote flexible working time and location and positively impact employee retention.
Overworked employees tend to be highly dissatisfied. They are less likely to work collaboratively with their coworkers. Moreover, it can impact their efficiency and productivity negatively. It can also reduce their motivation to continue working for the organization.
Addressing employee burnout issues through continual up-skilling assigning mentors, creating a positive and collaborative work culture and, reducing workplace stress can help enhance retention.
Organizations need to implement wellness initiatives as an integral part of their employee engagement strategy to ensure better employee retention. They also need to develop such policies that assure them that their health, safety and well-being are top priorities for the organization.
Such wellness initiatives are also likely to offer great benefits in form of savings on medical expenses and insurance covers for employees. At the same time, they can help build an healthy, energetic and productive workforce, ready to take on all business challenges.
Implementing these employee engagement strategies can go a long way in boosting workforce morale and making them feel valued by their employers, resulting in better retention and countering this trend of ‘Great Resignation’.
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