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Recruit, Retain, Resign, Repeat

18.04.2018

Recruit, Retain, Resign, Repeat

What really makes people want to join your team, why they want to leave and how you can improve your recruitment strategy.

If you want to recruit the very best you need to be prepared to fight for them because, right now, the war for talent is on and it’s skilled people who have the upper hand.

When trying to fill a job vacancy, the first thing you should do is find out what it is that people want from their next career move.

In a recent survey by CV-Library, 1,200 professional workers said that the most appealing feature of a new job was a good salary (58%). While that may come as a surprise to some, it’s perhaps not a huge shock given the financial and economic uncertainty we have seen for quite some time now.

Of course, there’s definitely more to the motivations of talented people than money. Friendly colleagues (48%), a great company culture (40%), room for progression (34%) and personal development (28%) also feature highly, as does a nice boss (22%), proving that you really do have to offer the ‘full package’ if you want to build an amazing team.

What’s really interesting about this study is how motivations appear to be changing. A couple of years ago, all of the research pointed towards the scope of responsibility in a job being the deciding factor for a move; and I still believe that talented and ambitious people are driven by being happy in what they do and contributing toward a purpose they believe in.

Enjoying your job should be non-negotiable and it’s all of these factors that you need to try to demonstrate you can offer when meeting with potential new employees.

Once someone has been recruited in the US, on average they spend 4½ years at a company. Data for the UK is trickier to find, but that seems fairly comparable as, in my experience, between three and five years is typical.

Your next challenge as an employer is to keep people motivated for longer than this and, in order to do that it’s important to remember that what persuaded someone to join your company isn’t necessarily going to be the reason why they will want to leave.

While there are lots of reasons for people switching jobs, the truth is that the majority of resignations are because of a manager.

In a Gallup study, about 50% of the 7,200 respondents said that they left their job to get away from their boss.

The research found that too many managers are so focused on the business aspect of things that they forget their employees are people; and that these people are the backbone of their success.

Micromanagement was a big factor, as highly skilled people expect autonomy and are usually willing to take responsibility and be accountable for the results. Micromanaging creates a stressful environment where it’s hard to perform at your best and, without trust, talented people will soon become disengaged.

Similarly, a lack of empathy when an employee is facing an issue, whether personal or professional, can destroy a working relationship. When people feel like they go above and beyond what is expected and in a moment of need their manager responds with inflexibility and insensitivity, then a connection can be lost.

Not supporting work-life balance and failing to recognise and reward achievement were also cited as ways managers make staff demotivated and, with the current low levels of unemployment, people with the right combination of attitude and ability are at a premium.

With so much competition you need to have a recruitment strategy and the right people in place within your leadership team to make sure you are not only treating people honestly and fairly, but you are staying in touch with what they are thinking, so you can head off any potential retention issues before it’s too late.

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