What’s the difference between theory and reality?
In theory there is no difference, but in reality there is.
One of the most common points of frustration I constantly hear about from HR and recruitment managers is that there are plenty of theories on employee retention, but what trying to implement theory, they often find themselves encountering challenges that theory books don’t have answers to.
Executive Personal and Professional Development
Meirav Shoval-Hinkis, HR Director at Amdocs, describes the company’s employee retention efforts in terms of investing resources in executives. Shoval-Hinkis, who has 18 years’ experience in the field of HR, thinks that investing in the personal and professional growth of executives makes them better managers, which in turn leads to employees feeling more meaningful. This feeling in turn will convince them to stay with the company. Shoval-Hinkis puts emphasis on leadership and management skills from management roles all the way to team leaders. In this way, managers get tools that help them be more attentive about the personal growth of their own employees.
On-boarding a New Employee
Shlomit Groda of AstraZeneca, is an HR director with approximately 16 years of experience in various roles in Israel and abroad. Shlomit has a different perspective on employee retention: an employee’s oh-boarding process is a crucial stage, and it requires investment and close attention. After recruiting the right candidate, you must accompany him in the process, while he learns the organizational atmosphere. You must also pay attention to the ways in which people in the organization get him/her acquainted with the organization: from introducing the employee to technical terminology, through increasing his involvement in team processes and the intra-organizational nuances that come into play in formal meetings. Since the crucial stage in employee retention is the first two years of his joining the organization, and since the first 90 days are even more sensitive, there needs to be a comprehensive on-boarding process: an orientation process, a control and “pulse taking” by the direct manager, colleague openness to the new member of the team, and making sure the new employee gets all the tools they need in order to quickly and easily become a part of the organization.
A Precise Recruitment Process
Vered Asayag Sheffer, VP of HR in Calanit, describes an employee retention process that, in her company, starts from recruitment itself. Recruitment coordinators are very service-oriented, and make sure to be attentive to applicants, creating personal relationship with each and every one of them. The next step is different in every department according to their specific needs. There are incentives, such as “employee of the month” or courses for employee personal development, so that employees have many options for personal growth regardless of their work. However, these opportunities for growth stimulate employees to work more diligently. The idea is to constantly plan and think ahead to the next step that will help preserve good employees, and that will foster high levels of motivation and loyalty to the company.
So… What’s the Bottom Line?
The world of employee retention is very rich and there is no one right way to do it. Every manager and every company put emphasis on a different route, which ultimately aims to lead to better employee retention for high-quality employees that contribute to the organization.
I believe that the focus should be to always have your hand on the pulse, to know what are the right questions to ask and when to ask them. In this way, when a trend of lack of motivation or employee exhaustion presents itself, it could be raised in time, taken care of, and refrain from an endless cycle of employees who leave, create a bad influence on those who stay, and in turn create high costs for new recruitment efforts.