Stable employee retention is a top issue at management level today and a decisive factor for corporate success. For many companies, the issue is exerting enormous pressure in view of the increasing shortage of skilled labour and rising staff turnover. If employees resign or have already quietly resigned and are only doing the bare minimum of their daily workload, this costs the company money. According to the Netigate study on employee engagement from 2023, the intention to resign has increased and one in four people are considering quitting in the current year. How can a company counteract this trend and retain its employees in the long term?

How Modern Employee Retention Can Be Implemented

Strategic employee retention begins with the signing of the contract and builds on the foundation of a positive corporate culture and convincing corporate values. The world of work has changed dramatically and is characterised by constant upheaval. This makes it all the more important for companies to remain authentic and at the same time adapt the framework conditions and measures for employee retention to changing expectations. Many processes and tasks have changed considerably as a result of technology, as have social norms and the demands and needs of employees. A good salary is no longer everything. Of course, attractive remuneration and additional benefits are important, but intangible aspects are playing an increasingly important role when it comes to employee retention.

These intangible factors that determine whether an employee feels connected to the company or not include the management style. Appreciation, recognition, trust and respect are relevant for many employees today when looking for a suitable working environment. The “tone from the top” has a significant influence on the working atmosphere and a positive communication style can strengthen employee loyalty in the long term. Positive, supportive and empathetic leadership promotes employee trust and loyalty. A properly staffed management position has a high impact on loyalty. Involving employees in decision-making or change processes and an open corporate culture also have a positive effect on employee retention. Medium-sized companies have a clear advantage over large corporations in this respect: clearer and familiar structures can significantly strengthen the loyalty factor and a trusting relationship and become an important advantage over the big players.

Corporate Integrity in Dynamic Times

The important elements of the modern working world, the so-called “New Work”, should also be practised in medium-sized companies. In the commercial sector, for example, this includes flexible working hours and the option of remote working, as well as the use of modern technologies and tools. Contemporary offerings such as hybrid working models enable a better work-life balance and are also important instruments for ensuring that employees identify with the company. In the commercial sector, these can be additional benefits such as company health management or the option to swap and organise shifts flexibly.

Transparent Development Paths as a Driver of Employee Motivation

To ensure that loyalty to the company is not lost despite the hybrid models, it is important that managers and HR consciously work on strengthening cultural ties. Employees who can get involved in decision-making processes and other participative approaches specifically promote employee loyalty. Individual promotion opportunities and development paths provide important motivational boosts and, in conjunction with regular feedback and performance evaluations that make individual progress transparent, have a strong binding effect. Employees’ potential can be fully utilised through professionally implemented skills management. Talent can also be promoted in a targeted manner and change in the world of work can be driven forward efficiently. In this context, functions and positions can be rethought and made possible on the basis of skills rather than qualifications.

Sustainable Employee Retention, Long-Term Corporate Success

The development and progress of individual employees can be tracked transparently via People Analytics. People Analytics collates data from internal and external sources and provides valuable information and insights, including with regard to employee retention and intentions to leave. It is worth analysing to determine whether there are company-related causes for resignations, such as management style, tasks or the team atmosphere, which are becoming more frequent. A lot can be done to ensure that employees feel comfortable in the company in the long term, identify with their work and are committed, and individual measures are subject to dynamic processes. Whether flexible working models, regular feedback processes, recognition programmes, team-building measures or an attractive workplace design: which measures are relevant and meaningful for the respective company in terms of strategic employee retention and how they are weighted varies from company to company. THE MAK`ED TEAM works with experienced HR experts to develop customised strategies and concepts for SMEs that are adapted to the needs and cultures of the company.

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