The Great Resignation: a term most leaders are probably tired of hearing but can’t ignore. So, instead, let’s talk about The Great Retention! We know tackling retention can be a daunting task, which is why we’re here to help you break it down and take it one step at a time.
THE GREAT RESIGNATION
Retention is becoming increasingly important as The Great Resignation shows no signs of slowing down.
“While U.S. workers are quitting in droves, employers are reporting record-high job openings—10.4 million in September—creating a scenario in which strained industries are competing for talent and driving up compensation.” –SHRM
This means that not only are your leadership and HR teams feeling the impacts of these numbers, but your recruiting team is, and your employees likely are too. More competition in your industry means more pressure on your recruiting team, which probably means increased time in filling positions.
The effects don’t just stop there, though. Increased time in filling positions means more work on your people who are staying. This can lead to burnout and create a vicious cycle of resignations.
This is why it’s so important to take this seriously and try to get ahead of it. And if you’re still with us, that’s exactly what you’re doing!
THE GREAT RETENTION
While there’s no foolproof plan for keeping employees in any scenario, we’d like to share some strategies we’ve had success with at Nextep. We’re breaking it down to highlight how HR can be used to drive employee retention, starting with employee pay.
The Great Resignation and the impacts of an ongoing pandemic have long-lasting effects. As a result, employees are evaluating their personal and work lives and listing their non-negotiables. You’ll find that things like culture, work-life balance, and flexibility are increasingly important. But compensation remains a pivotal factor in choosing whether employees stay at a current job or look for new opportunities with better pay.
“Other outside factors may be at play as well,” said Lindsey Nichols, Nextep’s Vice President of Human Resources. “At Nextep, we’ve seen other companies, often located in high cost-of-living areas, attempt to recruit employees by offering higher salaries than we typically see in our lower cost-of-living location. As a result, this shift has prompted us to fine-tune our compensation strategy as an organization.”
A Pew Research Center study from February 2022 found that 63% of workers who quit a job in 2021 said low pay was why they left. Significantly, an average of 3.98 million workers quit their jobs each month in 2021, and similar trends continue into 2022. Now is therefore the time to take a serious look at your company’s compensation as a key part of your employee retention strategy.
A compensation review is a great retention tool to keep in your company’s tool belt. Let’s take a look at some general tips on how to go about using a compensation review to review employee pay at your company.
WHO’S IN CHARGE?
Firstly, take the time to establish who will take charge of your company’s compensation review. Depending on the size of your company and how many employees you have, an individual could manage the project. Alternatively, you can put together a committee to handle it. Departments involved with company-wide compensation reviews are typically human resources, business operations, and finance.
TAKE THE PULSE OF YOUR COMPANY
Go right to the source! Ideally, you’re talking to departing employees about their reason(s) for leaving. If compensation factored into their departure, be bold and ask them what their new pay and job title will be. Use this information in conjunction with other data to help you make compensation decisions.
Also, conducting an anonymous employee survey may be part of your regular process. Include a question about employees’ satisfaction with pay. What are they telling you? Use that data to your advantage!
GATHER MARKET DATA
It takes a lot more than gut feelings to set competitive salaries at your company. Getting access to accurate and verified salary data from trusted sources will be critical in your compensation research. It’s crucial to understand precisely where your company falls in terms of pay – businesses conducting salary assessments typically pay labor research firms for access to verified salary information.
For example, Nextep uses Payscale to help us compare our salaries based on job title, experience, and location to ensure we’re offering pay that’s competitive in the current job market.
Since the market changes often, it’s essential to do these assessments regularly, at least annually. We have found that COVID, inflation, current market conditions, The Great Resignation, and the rapidly changing way people work have caused a big shift in salary data and expectations in the past year, for example.
Once you’ve obtained reliable salary data, your next big task is to spend time analyzing the data you’ve gathered. Compare your company’s pay against the verified salary data to identify gaps in employee compensation and use that information to develop salary ranges and benchmarks for each role within your organization.
PUT THE RESEARCH INTO ACTION
Now you have up-to-date salary ranges for your company, it’s time to put the research to good use! Firstly, compare your employees’ current pay against the new salary ranges you’ve created. Then, determine if anyone is underpaid or where you can increase compensation to be more competitive.
From here, you can work on matching employee salaries to market trends. Compare the two to ensure you’re offering the most competitive pay possible for your organization. This step will help you retain employees and stand out to potential candidates in the current job market.
To sum up, being compensated fairly and competitively at work can go a long way to make your people feel valued and appreciated! Be transparent with your people. Let your employees know your company is working to monitor trends in the current job market and actively taking steps to ensure pay is as competitive as possible.
Attracting and retaining top talent is something we pride ourselves on at Nextep. We’d love to chat with you about how we can help your business conduct a compensation review! Our goal is to help you bring in the best and brightest talent and keep them around in today’s changing market.
Let’s talk so we can help your company can join The Great Retention!