Are you losing your top talent? Try these 5 proven retention strategies

Finding skilled talent can be challenging for any business. Once you’ve managed to attract top performers to your team, keeping them should be a top priority. However, according to research from Intuit QuickBooks, retention is a struggle for small businesses – with 32% of those surveyed reporting that retention is hard or getting harder. This can overload your existing staff and be a financial burden as the cost spent to search, hire, and onboard new staff is expensive.

Employees may seek new opportunities for any number of reasons, but they typically fall under these factors: stress or burnout, lack of benefits, and limited room for growth. If your business is experiencing high turnover, that’s a clear sign you’re at risk of losing not only money but also a competitive advantage. Stable, experienced teams will drive innovation and strong customer relationships. Ensuring your best people stay put in an environment where every advantage counts can set your company apart. Here are five strategies to keep employee retention rates high:

1. Give Employees a Voice

There’s no better way to learn what can be improved than by hearing it straight from the source. Establishing open channels for feedback and involving employees in company decisions and brainstorming new ideas can heighten employee engagement, making them feel valued and heard. Regular employee surveys, feedback tools, and company-wide town halls are great ways to start a discussion and gather critical feedback to help you build a stronger work environment.

2. Offer Competitive Benefits

Today’s workforce looks beyond the paycheck when it comes to company loyalty. Employees seek benefits that align with their long-term well-being, which often starts with their health benefits. This means businesses need to offer comprehensive plan options that meet a range of individual needs. Selecting these benefits doesn’t have to be a burden for you as a business owner, either. Products and resources from companies like QuickBooks, in partnership with Allstate Health Solutions, can simplify the process by integrating comprehensive health insurance benefits into their payroll platform or business software. Additionally, Allstate Health Solutions can offer a variety of supplemental benefits such as dental and vision insurance. Having

comprehensive health coverage gives employees peace of mind, which can reduce stress and enable employees to lead happier lives both in and out of the workplace. Differentiating your business through your healthcare offerings can help ensure your employees are cared for and keep them from seeking a new job with better options.

3. Invest in Employee Growth

Helping your employees develop skills and prioritizing their growth is also an investment in your business’s success. To show your employees they have a future with your company, offer skills training, leadership programs, and a clear path for promotions. Provide resources and funding to attend industry conferences, educational seminars, and even tuition reimbursement to demonstrate your commitment to employee development.

4. Foster a Consistent Recognition Program

It can be difficult for employees to stay engaged and motivated when their hard work goes unnoticed. Establishing an effective recognition and appreciation program will ensure you never miss a cause for celebration, whether a major accomplishment or an everyday effort. From sending informal gestures of thanks to bigger delights like formal awards or performance-based bonuses, each acknowledgment can go a long way in boosting workplace morale. Consider starting small by adding time to the agenda for employee shout-outs during every staff meeting.

5. Create a Workplace Culture That Prioritizes People First

Creating a workplace that supports the work-life balance of your employees goes beyond a policy change; it requires a shift in company culture. In a recent survey, 94% of employees said they consider work-life balance important when selecting a job. To retain talent, it’s essential to show your employees that you care about them as people. Recent data shows that employees, on average, take only 12 days off per year, and projections for 2024 suggest that 1 in 10 will take no vacation time at all. Encourage your team to take time off when they need it so they know their well-being is a priority. On top of this, enhancing paid time off (PTO) policies and including attractive alternative benefits like flexible working hours, remote work options, and wellness programs can significantly impact employee satisfaction. Leading with empathy is key, and training managers to understand and accommodate the needs of their team members will ensure everyone is on the same page.

Retaining talent is more than a cost-saving measure; it’s also a strategy for building a competitive advantage. By enhancing your retention strategies, you can ensure that your company not only maintains its workforce but grows alongside them.