10 most effective employee retention methods

Employers are not too proud to admit it: They have an employee retention problem. But the good news is they’re reporting there are tactics and programs working to keep top employees on board — and the majority don’t involve bumping up employees’ pay.
Thanks to improvements in the job market, employee retention is rapidly becoming a hot button issue for employers.
In fact, 65% of organizations report retaining key talent has become a major concern recently, a stat WorldatWork published in its new report Retention of Key Talent and the Role of Rewards for which the company surveyed 526 mid- to senior-level rewards professionals.
Perhaps even more troubling: Only 51% of respondents were confident their organization could retain key talent if the job market continued to improve.
Why employees quit
Rewards professionals were asked to rate the reasons employees quit on a 1 to 5 scale (with 1 representing “strongly disagree” and 5 representing “strongly agree”).
The top 10 reasons employees leave:

  1. To get more pay elsewhere (average score was 3.13)
  2. Lacked promotional opportunities (2.87)
  3. Feelings pay was unfair when compared to others outside the organization (2.74)
  4. Feelings pay was unfair compared to their work contributions (2.65)
  5. Dissatisfaction with work responsibilities (2.65)
  6. Workloads that were too heavy (2.62)
  7. Dissatisfaction with work/life balance (2.61)
  8. Conflicts/problems with supervisor (2.56)
  9. Lack of training and developmental opportunities (2.49), and
  10. Inadequate use of their abilities (2.49).

What’s working to retain employees
Rewards professionals were also asked to rate the most effective methods used to retain employees on a scale of 1 to 5 (with 1 representing “ineffective” and 5 representing “very effective”).
The top 10 tactics and programs that work to retain employees:

  1. Pay employees above the labor market (2.94)
  2. Provide more incentive/bonus opportunities (2.91)
  3. Let key employees know they’re essential to the business (2.90)
  4. Create flextime/telecommuting opportunities (2.86)
  5. Create a succession plan to replace key individuals (2.84)
  6. Discuss with key employees their future opportunities within the organization (2.82)
  7. Provide cash bonuses for retaining key employees (2.81)
  8. Provide meaningful and enriching job designs for key employees (2.77)
  9. Provide key employees with stock options/equity awards (2.77), and
  10. Create an extensive benefit package (2.75).

Some of the least effective employee retention methods:

  • Providing tuition reimbursement and other educational opportunities (2.56)
  • Monitoring employee satisfaction with pay and work duties (2.60), and
  • Providing mentors for key employees (2.66).