Employee retention is a hot topic going into the new year.

The hiring market still favors those looking for jobs over those looking to fill jobs – unemployment is still low and there are still currently more jobs than people to work them.

This means that amongst your hiring efforts for 2020, you need to ensure you and your hiring team prioritize employee retention efforts and continues to find ways to keep your best employees working for you.

A focus on retention is important because it can cost businesses big bucks when employees leave. On average, an entry-level employee that leaves their job costs a business 30-50% of their annual salary (higher paying and more skilled positions cost businesses even more).

Plus, having employees leave lowers morale, stresses your current work staff, and makes everyone a little bit grumpy. And starting off the year grumpy just isn’t fun.

So what are our 5 top tips for employee retention?

First, hire right from the start.

Making smart hiring choices from the start can help with employee retention. If the right people with the right skills and background are hired you will find they are more likely to stay.

So how to ensure you hire right, right from the get-go?

First, have a robust procedure for pre-screening. Knowing if someone meets all the necessary requirements before they make it to official interviews saves time and hassle. Those that don’t fit your needs and the skills required will be weeded out early on.

Second, create a clear job and candidate profile that includes skills (both soft skills and hard skills) that are required to do the job. Further, take the time to look back at people who have successfully held these positions and see if there are common traits that you can use to get an idea of your perfect candidate. A robust candidate profile and a clear job profile means getting to the right people, faster.

Third, make sure to contact their referrals. Making sure to do this gives you a stronger understanding of the candidate and how they worked in their last positions. You can get a better sense of their work ethic and their values by asking the right questions to their employment references.

Second, create an efficient and engaging on-boarding process.

Systems and procedures relating to on-boarding a new hire can make or break your retention. We truly believe that a solid and systematic process of bringing on and training new hires does a few things.

It supports your new hire and makes them feel happier and more motivated to do a great job in their new role. They’ll feel the company is invested in them and will in turn feel more of a desire to do a great job. Knowing your company supports and is there to train you to do your job well makes people feel important.

It also creates less work for your current employees in the long run. Someone who is trained correctly before being put in their job role and “let loose” doesn’t become another burden to your current staff. They’ll be able to continue to work hard while guiding the new hire effectively.

So what makes up an effective on-boarding process? It boils down to the necessary training and feedback that is needed to coach the new employee to perform the job up to both the job and business standards. Some job roles may not take that much time to on-board while more skilled and technical jobs may require a few months worth of training and feedback.

Ask current employees what training helped them, what training wasn’t necessary, and what training they would have wished they received when they started at your company. This can help develop better on-boarding procedures as well as give you insight into some additional training you can provide your current staff (a bit of a win-win!)

Third, challenge employees (and allow them to continue to learn!)

A big trend in the later part of 2019 and 2020 is a trend in upskilling current staff. Upskilling means teaching employees additional skills and expanding their capabilities. This move to re-training and upskilling the workforce as a whole lies mainly in how technology has shifted the workplace. While before technology changed at a slower pace, the technology we have in factories and manufacturing facilities now creates an environment where a good number of the workforce needs to learn new skills to continue to do their old jobs.

Allow employees opportunities to learn in and outside of your walls. Consider tuition reimbursement or free courses that allow workers to broaden their skill set to evolve as business and technology evolves. Plus, an extremely skilled workforce can increase productivity and profit and reduction in error and safety issues.

Fourth, consider ways to enhance health and wellness benefits.


A benefit package is great but nowadays every company offers similar packages. Your employee benefit package may not be that much different and may not entice your employees to stay. 59% of employees now say that health and wellness benefits are important for increasing loyalty to their employers.

One way to combat that is to add or beef up your current health and wellness benefits. Gym memberships, on-site wellness checks, and paid incentives for partaking in healthy activities can improve the health of your employees and make them happier in the process.

Fifth, work on creating (and keeping) your culture positive and engaging.

Company culture is so important, and plays a key role in keeping employees working for you. A positive, open, and encouraging company culture creates a feeling of value and validation for your employees.

If you are just starting to create a great company culture, rest assured it can be done in a few simple ways.

First, be open and honest with your staff. Be as transparent as possible with them about the business and sales. Employees will start to feel respected and valued and begin to believe in their role and their roles importance in the business. This also means they are more invested and interested, therefore also creating more motivation for them to work hard.

Second, create values and live by them. If your business has key guiding values and principals, everyone from the top down should know and exemplify them each and every day.

Employee retention really boils down to treating employees with integrity and as just that, humans. People who work for you are not just a body doing a job. They are human beings with friends, families, and a life outside of work. Finding a way to balance the expectations you have with the understanding that your employees are human will help you find the perfect way to increase your employee retention.

Let us help.

GTR has been in the industry for 17 years so we know a thing or two about recruiting and hiring. We also have helped businesses everywhere come up with great ways to keep their workforce working. With our help, you can Build A Workforce That Works. Contact us today.