Spring Your Company Forward
“In times of doubt and confusion, the phoenix symbolizes strength, transformation, and renewal. For only from the ashes of who we were, can we rise up to become who we’re to be.”
I’m sure by now you’ve all heard about the current phenomena called The Great Resignation. Many are under the false assumption that this is a new thing. The truth is, it only feels that way. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, over 47 million Americans voluntarily quit their jobs in 2021. And that is a record number. But we were heading there anyway. American’s started this “trend” in 2009. A “trend” that’s been consistently increasing every year. The only year this didn’t happen was in 2020.
The Covid-19 Pandemic really hit hardest in early 2020. Over 22 million jobs were lost in March and April alone. As I just stated, Americans have been leaving jobs increasingly since 2009. Americans were leaving their jobs for better pay, better hours, or just something they simply liked doing more. The pandemic put that on pause as there were no jobs to go to. As restrictions eased and companies started hiring again, even more workers surprisingly joined the resignation trend that was already in place. Companies were hiring, but they were struggling to fill those positions. And, companies were also struggling to keep their current workforce in place. After a dip in 2020, employees leaving their jobs at the projected rate the numbers were already pointing to, the current exodus called The Great Resignation feels like something new. While it’s not new, per se, it is making companies rethink hiring and retention like never before. Companies are transforming and renewing their operations. If you haven’t done so already, this article will help you meet the current job market demands as you Spring Your Company Forward in 2022.
Why Are They Quitting?
Study upon study has confirmed that money is the biggest contributor to people quitting their jobs. The top three reasons listed have been dissatisfaction with pay (63%), a lack of advancement opportunities or promotions (63%), and the feeling of not being respected at work (57%). But not all of your ERP Implementation Consultants or Systems Analysts or Developers are leaving you for another VAR or tech company. Over half of employees who quit in 2021 have opted to change careers completely.
MIT Sloan Management Review recently analyzed 34 million online employee profiles to dig even deeper into the why of all this. According to that report, they found a top five list that might surprise you:
#1. Toxic Corporate Culture
#2. Job Insecurity and Reorganization
#3. High Levels of Innovation
#4. Failure to Recognize Performance
#5. Poor Response to Covid-19
What Do They Want?
Of course, everyone wants to make more money. Mostly, they want to be paid a fair salary. Many in the retail and service industries are just looking for a livable wage. The discussion gets a little more complicated in things like tech where the competition is fierce to hire new talent. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, salaries increased by 4.5% in 2021. The prediction was that this would continue to increase in 2022 but not quite as sharply. We’ve got our own predictions at DyNexus Recruiting in our annual Salary Guide. Well, we’re only in the 4th month of the year and we’re still waiting for the sharp increase to level off at all.
Another big demand that isn’t going away is remote or hybrid work options. And there’s no reason not to offer it to them. Studies have shown that those who work from home are 35% to 40% more productive than their in-office counterparts. If you are concerned about losing some of that workplace culture or keeping tabs on your employees, we wrote an article about how to maximize engagement in a hybrid or remote work environment.
Job seekers today are also looking for short-term payoffs as well as long term investments. A 401K is important. Insurance is important. But they don’t carry the same weight they used to. Workers want a better work-life balance. Employees are looking for a reasonable work schedule, a focus on mental and physical health, and a sense of purpose. So there’s a few things you can (and probably should) begin offering, if you don’t already.
What Can You Do?
First and foremost, make sure you are paying your employees what they are worth. Salaries are going up across the board. One trend we are seeing is that employees are looking for higher base salaries without the high dependency on bonuses to achieve a total compensation. Consider restructuring your payout structure and do your homework to see what positions are worth.
Next, continue to train, educate, and prepare your employees. If the trend is for employees to leave their job for another career, give them options within your own company. Give them pathways to advance or make alternative moves in your company. Training an employee you already have to do other jobs in your company will save you time and money. It will also help attract new talent.
Focus on mental and physical health. There are many ways you can do this. Offer reimbursement for gym memberships. Give passes to national parks. Encourage team members to take part in therapy, yoga, meditation, or to just take a well day. There is a growing push for offering Unlimited Paid Time Off. But employees aren’t taking time off. And they should. Taking vacations increases loyalty, creativity, and productivity. It’s not enough to just offer time off of work. You must actively encourage and support your employees taking advantage of it. We just wrote a very eye-opening article on Unlimited Paid Time Off.
Finally, make your company a place where people want to work. Whenever we engage in a new Recruiting Search, we ask our clients, “What makes your company unique? Why would a job seeker want to work for you? What makes you excited to get up and work there every day?” Again, it’s one thing to have an answer to these questions. It’s another thing to make these a daily reality.
Spring is here. Trees that have lost their leaves are sprouting new greens. Flowers are starting to bloom. Temperatures are starting to rise and the days are filled with more sunlight. It’s a time of rebirth, renewal, new life and new beginnings. Take this time to really evaluate how your company can meet the changing demands of job seekers. Like the Phoenix from the ashes, the changes you make today can effectively and sustainably spring your company forward.