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6 Surprising Employee Retention Statistics

Jan 15, 2021

pexels-jopwell-2422278Employee retention is the aim of any organization, yet rarely does it happen automatically.

When a good employee leaves, not only is it  expensive and time-consuming (think recruiting, hiring and training—and lost productivity), it results in what my old professor Dr. J used to call "institutional wisdom."

Would you like to improve your company's retention rate? Check out these 6 surprising employee retention rate statistics. You'll also discover helpful tips to help you increase retention!

1. Each month, approximately 3 million Americans quit their job 

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 3.5 million working Americans leave their job by choice, each month. This number does not include layoffs or firings.   

While people leave jobs for many reasons, this statistic underscores how rampant the problem of retention is. If your own company's retention rate isn't where you would like it to be, take time to assess your company culture, identify why people are leaving, and what steps you can take to turn the tide.  

2. Out of 1,000 surveyed employees, 31% have said they’ve quit a job within the first six months

A study conducted by BambooHR found that nearly one-third of surveyed employees have quit their jobs within the first six months. The top reported reasons why were:

This statistic is grim, but it also has a bright side. By having a good idea of why people leave companies so early on, you can combat high turnover rates with preventative measures.

Creating a welcoming and informative employee orientation program, clarifying expectations and duties, and conducting ongoing leadership training for managers will make it more likely that your top performers will stick with you – and enjoy giving their best efforts!

3. Companies in favor of remote work have 25% lower employee turnover

Who doesn't enjoy flexibility in the workplace? Remote work can provide that flexibility. So it’s no surprise that this Owl Labs study found a lower turnover rate when remote work was offered. When employees are happy and find that their work is accommodating to their personal lives, they are more likely to stay.

Your company can support remote work by providing a set number of remote work days per year, a completely remote arrangement, or a hybrid model where employees spend half the week working from the office and the other half at home.

4. Over 70% of high retention risk employees say they need to leave their company to advance their career

A study by Willis Towers Watson found that over 70% of employees who are at “high retention risk” wish to leave their organization because they cannot advance in their role. To combat this, consider offer ongoing training, coaching and mentoring. What better way to help nurture your top performers into leadership roles within your organization?

People tend to stay at companies where they can grow. Your team will also notice and appreciate if you value them enough to invest in their growth. 

5. 77% of employees say relationships with co-workers is the main driver of high engagement at work

While good relationships between managers and direct reports is important (poor management, or poor relationships with management often drive employees to leave), there's another relationship that is equally important: the relationship among your team.  

According to a study by SHRM, employees who have good relationships with their co-workers are happier and have higher engagement at work. A collaborative culture where employees feel supported by one another also helps with retention rates. 

To encourage strong employee relationships, create opportunities for employees to connect. The key word is opportunities, rather than obligations. Most employees will appreciate (optional) opportunities to socialize in a low-key way, especially at the end of a workday.  

6. High employee engagement rates mean your employees are 87% less likely to leave their jobs

According to the Corporate Leadership Council, highly engaged employees are much more likely to stay at your organization. 

Are your employees engaged with their work and each other? If notor if you just want to improve your already excellent engagement rateshere are several things you can do as a manager. While you might not see improvement overnight, the following will increase engagement in the long run: 

  • Asking for feedbackand acting on it
  • Modeling and encouraging self-care (e.g., physical and mental health) to prevent burnout
  • Offering autonomy and flexibility
  • Creating opportunities for managers and employees to grow and advance
  • Offering company outings to strengthen employee relationships

Start improving your retention rate today

Interested in improving your employee retention rate? Or simply creating a more engaging company culture? You don't have to do it all yourself. Reach out to me today. Together, at no obligation to you, we'll determine how I can best help you. 

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