If you are unaware of the mass exodus of employees who are seeking better opportunities, you will. Countless articles have been written about The Great Resignation and, more recently, Striketober. Employees seeking more flexibility and fuller personal lives are considering changing jobs. In fact, a July 2021 Monster.com poll reveals:
- 95 percent of employees are considering changing jobs;
- 34 percent feel the best way for advancement is to find a job with a new employer;
- 86 percent of workers who feel their career has stalled during the pandemic; and
- 80 percent of workers do not think their current employer offers growth opportunities
With troubling trends in employee/employer relationships, the term “Great Resignation” was created in 2019 by Anthony Klotz, a professor of management at Mays Business School of Texas A&M University, to predict a mass, voluntary exodus.
The Old Work Environment Isn’t Working in the New Work Environment
Let’s face it. Working in an office hasn’t changed for decades. Aside from some companies offering perks like childcare, ping pong tables, and espresso machines, employers had the upper hand regarding an employee’s career path.
Millennials and Generation Z employees have been requesting better work/life balance and flexibility for more than a decade. The scales have been tipping to the employee’s favor, and the pandemic is creating the shift at an accelerating rate.
It’s an Employee’s Market
According to Derek Thompson, a staff writer at The Atlantic, “the basic terms of employment are undergoing a Great Reset…we may look back to the pandemic as a crucial inflection point in something more fundamental: American’s attitudes toward work. Since early last year, many workers have had to reconsider the boundaries between boss and worker, family time and work time, home and office.”
While employers may have been unprepared for this movement of talent, all hope isn’t lost. There are ways to improve employee retention as well as attract great talent from the prospective employee pool of those who have already resigned from their former companies.
Employers Must Compete for Talent
Phillip Kane, CEO and managing partner for Grace Ocean, commented, “the Great Resignation caught so many employers flat-footed because it ran contrary to everything traditional management thought they knew about labor markets. Resignation departures we are seeing is an (employee’s) decision to no longer accept the unacceptable.”
Recent research from Harvard Business Review (HBR) revealed that resignation rates are highest among mid-career employees aged between 30 and 45 years of age. Burnout from the pandemic, high workloads, and other pressures are key trends driving resignations.
First, understand your company’s turnover rates to quantify the problem. HBR offers this formula to calculate your retention rate:
Number of Separations per Year ÷ Average Total Number of Employees = Turnover Rate
Your turnover rate will help you understand the impact resignations have on business operations and profits.
Next, talk to your employees. Find out what perks are meaningful, what challenges they have, what would improve the morale and culture, etc. Armed with this information, the company can begin to develop tailored retention and targeted recruiting programs, especially for employees at the highest risk of leaving.
Kane stated employers can “stem the tide. Employees are looking for employee-centric cultures with companies they are proud to work for. Companies that are involved in the community and stand for things that they believe matter. It’s all about caring. It’s a simple choice. One that some 11.5 million people and counting are begging for companies to make.”
We Can Help
How employers respond may make all the difference not only in more contemporary recruiting and retention practices but also in business growth.
Reach out to our team at Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. We’ve helped with recruiting and retention program ideas and look forward to assisting you.