It’s no secret that good staff are hard to find and right now it seems as if a storm is brewing for employers within the Australian job market. Experts are predicting that half of the working population are considering resigning within the next 12 months. This coupled with the economic recovery going on from COVID-19, as well as skill shortages nationwide (due to limited overseas travel) could leave businesses without their most valued staff.
I work within labour hire, and since returning to the office, and since the construction industry is allowed to operate at full capacity, they’re firing on all cylinders. However, how do you operate at full capacity when you can’t find the right people for the job? And even worse, how do you operate at full capacity when your best workers are moving on? From working close to tradesmen, as well as in my own profession, I’ve decided to share what I believe are the best ways to ensure staff retention:
1. Work Flexibility
According to a surveyconducted by Ipsos for the World Economic Forum, 12,500 employed people in 29 countries found that a majority want flexible working to become the norm. And almost a third (30%) said they would consider looking for another job if they were forced to go back to the office full time.
One thing the pandemic has taught us is that good staff can be even more efficient when working from home. So why not offer it as an option? When workers avoid the time needed to travel to and from the office, they’re able to have more free time. More free time means less stress, less stress means more productivity and overall, a happier employee. Having some sort of a flexible working system is a great tool to keep your employees working for you.
One thing that stops employees at looking for opportunities elsewhere is when they’re given clarity about their role. Management needs to keep an open dialogue with their staff. This dialogue should include things like: Where the company is going to be 12 months from now. Where the employee sits within this. What the employee will be doing to help the company get there. and what’s in it for them along the way.
If an employee understands that the place they’re working is going in the right direction and if they can see a plan for its trajectory – they may stick around.
3. Be Open to Change
Its important to ask your employees what you could be doing better. It’s even more important to act on their suggestions. The worst thing management can do is let issues go unresolved, as employees will end up frustrated and feeling hopeless.
A great way to hear from your employees is by conducting monthly anonyms. Another way is to hold monthly or quarterly meetings – one on one with your staff. The goal here is that your staff will become comfortable enough with you to share their suggestions, which you can enact on – before they go looking for jobs elsewhere.
4. Office Environment
The office, or workplace is where we spend most of our day and sometimes (unfortunately) where we spend most of our life. So, how employees feel about each other, and how they’re allowed to conduct themselves within that environment can go a long way for their overall happiness.
It’s important to invest in your team culture. Whether it be by organising events, encouraging conversation, or celebrating the smallest of wins. If your team get on well with each other they will be less likely to move onto the unknown.
Another aspect of this is diversity and inclusion. It’s one thing for parts of the team to thrive during social events, it’s another for the rest who may not feel as if their heard, or respected. The office should be a safe place for everyone, no matter their status of employment. Therefore, it’s important to ensure employees (and management) are balancing culture with inclusion.
5. Knowing the Market
At the end of the day, we come to work to get paid. Therefore, when it comes to the discussion of contributing factors when switching jobs; salary cannot be overlooked. Employees want to feel like they are progressing and aren’t being paid unfairly. Therefore, it’s important to keep an eye on what your competitors are paying to similar level employees. You should really be having 6 monthly/yearly salary revues. Having a clear progression structure with clear goals is also a great way to keep your employees striving for more and in turn getting them to be the best, most productive worker they can be.
The last thing to remember is a happy office is a productive office. Taking care of your employees will mean that they will look after you too, be more willing to work, stick around for the long run and in turn make the company succeed.
Max is a consultant within the Carpentry Trades space. You can connect with him on LinkedInhere. Or apply for recent carpentry jobs here.
Lastly, if you have any immediate labour requirements you can contact Max via firstname.lastname@example.org