The great resignation is inevitable but there is a way to slow it down
The past 2 years is a lot – whether you are an employee or an employer. It’s made many of us think about what we want in life, work and for our families in a way we may not have done so previously.
“The Great Resignation” is one of the most topical conversations for business owners in the past 6 months, and for good reason. Without employees, we don’t have a business.
With healthcare and technology industries being hardest hit largely due to the demands on roles and the inability to bring talent in from overseas countries like we once did, there is a growing and relevant concern for how companies will staff their businesses going into the future.
As a marketing company, we have a 50 percent roster of technology-based clients in the United States, Australian and European markets. When having conversations with technology companies they all say that attracting good talent at salary ranges that are commensurate with their skills is near impossible.
When doing a marketing strategy for 2022 for these companies, they all put precedence on building brand to attract talent and improving internal communications and marketing activity.
Resignations are hard to take at the best of times, but when entrepreneurs, particularly the one’s with smaller businesses are being faced with employees being headhunted on LinkedIn daily with the promise of more money and “treats”, it’s hard to phantom a way through.
The good news is that there is a way to make it through stronger and more successful, but it requires strategic thinking, empathy and logic.
If 30 percent of your workforce is expected to resign in the next 12-months, then your business had better plan for it. That means ensuring that you have everything in place to nurture new candidates into your business.
Considerations for thinking strategically about “The Great Resignation”:
- Have a plan in place:
- Formalise a plan to attract talent to your organisation and keep them.
- Invest in better psychological profiling technology and methodology to hire individuals that fit your culture and vision.
- Have a world-class on-boarding process in place.
- Write, design and implement an advertising campaign for new positions with your company.
- Host “recruitment days” where you invite potential candidates to a function where there is a win-win. That means that they get as much out of the day as you.
- Interview your team and past employees to ask them what you can be doing better.
- Don’t try and compete with the Apple’s and Microsoft’s of this world. They have deep pockets. Focus on the things that money can’t buy.
- Use technology to reduce people overhead, improve redundant processes with a focus especially on “boring” work that can be better done by machines.
- Redesign your company culture and invest in ensuring that it is constantly nurtured and expanded.
- Think about who you want to work in your business long before you need them. For instance, in my technology company I am actively meeting new people to find ‘good fit’ candidates for future roles – one’s that have not yet been created.
- Clean the floor. This means clean up your mess first and foremost. Take ownership of areas that you may not have succeeded in or quite simply did wrong and ensure that when new candidates are coming for interviews, they see a ship that is sailing strongly through the waters.
- Work with your existing team and invest in their happiness, good health and futures.
- Know that you will not be able to win on the money front and that’s ok. For instance, an employee who had been only working with us for one year which is the length of her experience, loved her job and the people that worked with her, but had a husband that needed her to make more money. So when pushed to look for opportunities, given the current market, she was offered a six figure salary package. As a small business owner, someone with one year experience in a particular role is hard to justify a six-figure salary as they would cost more each hour than they would make. We could up our fees to our clients, but in this market, small businesses need all the support they can get. To do so, would be against our values as an organisation. Sometimes you just have to let them go with love and support, knowing that at best they will be good brand ambassadors for others hoping to join your company. Another’s husband didn’t want her lengthy travel into the office and she didn’t want to work from home, so she had to find a job closer to home. This makes sense as she has a small child and even though we allow for flexible hours, you can’t get away from the fact that it was 2 hours of wasted time each day in a car.
In America, 4.2 million people quit their jobs in October last year with the biggest category being 30 to 45 year olds representing 2.8 percent of the workforce.
Over the November to January period each year, many employees are spending more time with family and friends due to the holidays. What this means is that they are expanding their conversations, seeing new things and hearing about what others are doing in their careers.
Encourage employees who choose a new way of life
Why we will particularly experience a lot of change during this period and for European and US countries, over the summer holidays, is that people are re-evaluating their lives in light of the past few years.
Many people are downsizing, moving to the country or interstate for a more liveable experience. More businesses are being started, ideas are being generated and there is a little bit of envy going on.
Who isn’t going to fall in love with their friends lives that have finally rid themselves of mortgages, moved to the country to an idealistic lifestyle and work part time or not at all. Or the friend that started their own candle company and is making more money selling online than they ever made working? It’s hard to say what type of effect these stories are having on the mindsets of our employees but at the end of the day, as employers we must accept it.
If there is a better way to live life and our employees want to try it, then we should be encouraging it. Wanting happiness and fulfillment for others is just being a good person, and everyone wants to work for good people.
If you can’t compete financially with the high salaries being offered, then re-think your recruitment strategy. Employ people who are motivated by other things other than money. Invest in new technology to replace people in roles that are now redundant. While the investment may be high to start off with, it will be lower in the long run with a lot less stress.
Give a shoutout to //unsplash.com/@thisisengineering" for the image in this blog!