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Employee Retention Strategies: How to Keep Your Top Talents in 2024


Employee Management

Employee Retention Strategies: How to Keep Your Top Talents in 2024

January 17, 2024
min read
January 17, 2024
8 min read
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Employee Retention Strategies: How to Keep Your Top Talents in 2024

Employee retention is a vital aspect of today's labor market. This comes as a lesson from the last 2-3 years, where millions of employees globally joined a "Mass Exodus" and 2022's "Quiet Quitting" "Act Your Wage" movement due to different reasons, including poor work-life balance, limited career development opportunities, and poor leadership. Statistics show that employee retention was a top workforce management challenge for 47% of HR professionals. Another study also showed that 61% of employers have difficulty retaining employees. 

Will 2024 be any different? Also, how will organizations mitigate the challenge of employee turnover? According to the Organizational Well-being Report 2023, most organizations' number 1 operational priority is retaining talent. In this article, we shall explore the importance of employee retention and practical ways to retain productive and top talents. 

Why is Employee Retention Important? 

  1. Cost saving 

When an organization has a low employee turnover, recruitment and training costs are reduced. Often, it costs nearly twice an employee's salary to replace an employee. Therefore, an organization can save on such costs if they retain employees in the long term. 

  1. Increased productivity  

Often, employees who have been with an organization for a prolonged period tend to be more knowledgeable and efficient. As a result, they are more productive and efficient in their respective roles. Also, there is reduced disruption in the workflow and workforce, contributing to overall efficiency and productivity.

  1. High employee engagement 

Employee engagement works hand in hand with employee retention. When an organization has a high employee retention rate, it shows employees are highly engaged and committed to its goals. 

  1. Improved work culture 

Employees who stay for a long time in an organization contribute to developing a positive work culture. Consequently, a better work culture improves business outcomes, including more employee engagement, fostering innovation, and attracting top talents. 

  1. Narrowed skill gaps 

Top talents have certain skills critical to an organization and its objective. Therefore, retaining such talent is critical and prevents the loss of such skills, which could be hard to fill. Above all, retention gives an organization a competitive advantage to attract more skilled talents. 

Top 6 Employee Retention Strategies in 2024 

Here are practical strategies HR and business leaders can use to retain their top talents amidst the workforce challenges they're currently facing: 

  1. Improve the onboarding process 

The onboarding process is crucial since it gives employees the first impression of their new workplace. Nearly 80% of new hires who receive poor onboarding plan to leave, especially those working remotely. Therefore, a well-structured employee onboarding process is necessary to enhance an employee's first experience in an organization. A platform such as Workpay allows you to better manage every aspect of your onboarding process. 

A recent study showed that 82% of employers saw an improvement in retention by implementing a strong onboarding process. Consequently, reducing employee turnover boosts significant business aspects, including stability, productivity, and growth.

  1. Offer employee development opportunities 

Employees value growth, and if an organization is not providing it, they may easily look for it elsewhere. Offering opportunities for professional growth and skill development makes employees feel valued and more likely to stay with your company for a long time. Generally, investing in development opportunities is an effective way to retain top talents in today's competitive job market. 

Some of the best development opportunities include: 

  • Mentorship and coaching programs to enhance employees' skills 
  • Personalized development plans for employees 
  • Continuous learning opportunities such as online courses, workshops, conferences, etc. 
  • Cross-training and upskilling employees 
  • Create career advancement opportunities
  1. Prioritize employee well-being 

Employees often choose to work and stay in organizations that prioritize their well-being. There is a high correlation between employee well-being and employee retention: over 70% of corporate leaders invest in employee well-being initiatives to enhance employee well-being and workplace cultures. 

Here are effective ways to support employee well-being in the workplace: 

  • Offer benefits and resources that support employee well-being, such as wellness programs, health insurance, gym membership, etc. 
  • Create a healthy work environment for all employees.
  • Promote a healthy work-life balance. 
  • Support open communication about mental health. 
  1. Recognize and reward employees' inputs and achievements 

Lack of recognition is one significant factor contributing to employee turnover: statistics show that 66% of employees would leave their jobs if they didn't feel appreciated. Another survey by Gallup showed that employees who receive regular recognition and praise are more likely to stay with their current employer. It simply shows the impact of recognizing and rewarding employees for their efforts and achievements on retaining top talents in the long term.

There are various ways to recognize and reward employees. They include: 

  • Monetary rewards 
  • Public praise and social media shoutouts 
  • Performance or tenure bonuses 
  • Gift cards and prizes 
  • Extra time off and paid vacations 
  • Peer-to-peer recognition 
  1. Offer competitive compensation and benefits 

While factors such as employee recognition, a healthy work environment, career development opportunities, and a solid onboarding program boost employee retention, competitive compensation remains essential to most organization's retention strategy. About 39.4% of employees believe fair pay is the key reason they stay at an organization. 

When employees feel they're not fairly compensated, they're likely to look for other opportunities that offer better pay. Therefore, employers and leaders need to pay their teams as per the industry compensation standards. Also, their benefits packages should be attractive to employees. 

  1. Build strong leadership 

Leadership in an organization affects various aspects of employees, and employee retention is one of them. Therefore, having effective leadership is key to influencing employee retention. One way to achieve this is through leadership development programs to help managers improve their leadership skills to inspire, guide, and support their teams. Also, with effective and strong leadership, employees are more engaged, motivated, and encouraged to stay with an organization longer. 

Bottom line 

Employee retention is a significant aspect of any organization and requires a holistic approach focusing on an entire employee lifecycle. For instance, focus on having a solid, seamless onboarding process, prioritize employee well-being, pay employees competitively, develop an effective employee recognition program, and cultivate strong leadership.

Workpay Africa
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Workpay is a HR and Payroll software company that offers time & attendance, payroll, human resource, leave, expenses and remote teams solutions to businesses across Africa.

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