4 Keys to Reducing Employee Turnover

Employers continue to drop the ball when it comes to keeping employee morale from swirling down the gutter. All too often, time, energy, and resources are channeled into finding new talent while existing star employees are left on the shelves to collect dust. Needless to say, this is a dismal state of affairs, but what’s worse is that it is completely avoidable.

At the end of the day, your employee retention rate is one of the greatest indicators of your employees’ satisfaction level. How well the company manages compensation, appropriately gives bonuses, and accommodates career advancements are the main factors that dictate retention rates . A deficiency in any of these categories will result in top performers moving on. DOn average it costs roughly six months’ salary to recruit and hire a new replacement each time a top employee flocks elsewhere. Aside from the financial blow, a significant amount of productivity and innovation is tossed out the window every time one of your superstars heads for the door. Here are a few tactics that you can start using to continue hiring great employees while still hanging on to your top performers.

The Four Keys to Reducing Employee Turnover

Hire Right

For starters, one of the best ways to keep turnover low is to hire right in the first place. The most successful way to recruit and retain top employees is to design a selection process that is composed of many different layers and is managed accordingly. Before onboarding any candidate, it is always the best policy to give them the rundown of all the requirements for each job, and to clearly communicate where their salary fits in the market-based pay range for their job so they have a clear understanding of the room for growth in their position. In addition to this, you should utilize screening, assessments, and interviews during the application process. This will help you to weed out candidates who are not serious about the work or who lack desire to climb the career ladder within your business. If you are on a time crunch, it may be tempting to choose candidates who are “good enough” to get the job done, but really this is only a temporary solution for a long term problem. Being more selective, and communicating clearly during the hiring process will save you time and money that would have to be spent replacing any of these sub-par hires later on.

Pay Right

Another approach to maintaining a high employee retention rate is to offer new and existing employees a market-leading compensation and benefits package. When coming up with proposals for new hires you should consult timely compensation data and software to determine what is a fair offer for their position in relation to the market range for their jobs and their particular skills and qualifications. For your long term employees, a trendy benefit that you should consider introducing is a total wellness package that surpasses what is already encompassed in standard insurance programs. By going above and beyond to make sure employees are well cared for outside of the office, you show them that the company cares about them as a whole person and not just as a worker. There are lots of options with benefits, but the key thing to consider is how you are fostering a work environment that makes candidates choose you over the competition and makes employees want to stick around.

Reward Performance

A performance-based pay is a great way to retain top performers and keep the rest of your team motivated. Employees that are given the chance to earn more through their efforts often give their employers the return on this investment through increased productivity, employee morale, and loyalty. When an employee understands the connection between their hard work and their company’s willingness to pay more, great things will happen.

Be Flexible

Your top performing employees may come from multiple generations, but there is one thing that all employees have in common which is the need for a positive work culture. Traditional working conditions such as rigid work schedules, formal attire, and bleak work cubicles are no longer considered to be part of optimal employment. In today’s day and age employees favor work environments that offer flexible hours, telecommuting, casual attire, and open work areas. Perhaps your organization already offers excellent working conditions, but if you feel like there is room for improvement, start making changes here to help your company plan to retain more employees.

Above all else, ensure that your employees know that the company they are working for stands for something. Your organization’s core values will prove to be the driving force behind employee motivation during times when the work load is heavy or stressful. It is not always easy to maintain a high employee retention rate while trying to grow your business, but ultimately it is in your best interest to make sure you are taking care of your valued employees just as much as you are attracting new ones.

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Karaka Leslie

Karaka Leslie is one of the Product Managers at PayScale, a compensation data and software company. Karaka started her career as an agency recruiter, helping companies find the best talent. Since then, she has worked with numerous businesses to assist them with building a solid case for good compensation planning. Outside of compensation, she also founded a Community Giving group to help connect professionals to local community organizations focused on education and career services.

Reader Interactions


  1. Lolly says

    Often times simply being recognized for the work you’re doing with a “thank you” from your manager goes very far. That’s not to say money isn’t important or that it can’t be a motivator, but sometimes all an employee wants is to feel valued for their on-going efforts instead of only being rewarded when they hit a milestone.

    You’re absolutely right about the importance of showing employees that they company they work for stands for something meaningful. To me, it’s at the top of my list as an employee – 🙂

    Great post, Karaka!


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