Turnover and Your Company Culture

· by Brian Buchanan

Brian Buchanan is the VP of Operations at HTI. He has been with HTI since 2001.
Spread the love

Has your organization faced higher turnover numbers over the last few year?  As our economy has improved, many organizations have faced their highest turnover rates in years. There are simply more opportunities for associates to find other work options.

Turnover, for HR and recruiting professionals, is “scrap”.  Just like a bad part being produced by a manufacturer, it is unwanted cost.

It is very costly in time and money to on-board associates these days. Consider the advertising and posting expenses, hours of interviews, drug screens, assessments, background checks, and managing the ever growing paperwork required to get someone hired in a legal and compliant manner.  Additionally, there is training time, which can take weeks in most organizations. You spend precious and costly time developing the candidate, hiring them, weeks of training…only to have them turn over within the first few weeks.  How frustrated is your entire organization for this miss?

There are times that it is simply a recruiting miss.  But, the associate also took their time to go through the process only to quickly realize that they want to leave. Understanding that the associate knew the pay rate when they accepted the job, what caused the turnover?

Through my tenure in staffing, I have been fortunate to work with hundreds of amazing organizations.  Often those with the lowest turnover do not pay the highest wages.  In fact, many of the higher paying organizations are actually forced to pay the higher rate because something else is lacking…a good work environment or employee culture.  This piece is critical.

I’m not saying that higher wages don’t help, because they do help.  We all want to make more money, and if another organization attracts us with more money we will listen.  But you can counter the pay rate issue. If your leadership team members are true servant leaders, your work environment is clean and bright, you offer upward mobility, and have a good employee relations plan, you will have lower turnover.

Chick Fil A, Starbucks, and QuickTrip all are examples of companies that have low turnover with reasonable wages.  These companies have developed a culture where people enjoy working and therefore they want to stay.   If someone enjoys going to work, they are much less likely to turn over.

These organizations have also developed a reputation where they are known as “the place to work” in their industry, which helps with both recruiting and retention.  Additionally, their selection processes are mostly based on fundamentals, i.e., continuous marketing and candidate development, behavioral based interview techniques, cognitive assessments, and a personal touch.

Several basic fundamentals also apply for developing lower turnover in your contract workforce.   Become “the place to work” by following these ideas:

  • Develop a marketing plan with HTI to consistently recruit the best fit candidates
  • Assess your work environment, employee relations, benefits and advancement opportunity
  • Include your contractors in plant wide celebrations and initiatives
  • Develop on-boarding processes that are simple and welcoming
  • Most of all hug the associates when they get in the door

In simple terms, make sure your company culture is well transferred into the culture of the temporary or contract workforce.    After all, if you hire the associate full time, they instantly become a part of your culture.

I’ll be glad to share specific ideas and programs we have seen prove successful for improving employee retention. We are all in the same boat, because as I said…for every organization, turnover is scrap!