How to Get the Most Out of Your Workforce

Great cutting edge businesses are always worried about losing their most talented impulse. While investing in training, incentives and career progression might not seem logical in terms of direct, bottom-line impact, it is the most effective way of retaining talented individuals.

As a business grows and evolves, roles and responsibilities within the organisation can shift. As an employer it’s advisable to try to keep track of these shifting roles. Ask them about how their role has changed, about their happiness with their job and their thoughts about the future. It’s especially important to stay in regular contact with key team members if you want to keep them around.

Listen

Every employee wants to feel valued and have their opinions listened to. When your staff feel that managers don’t listen to them it can often lead them to look for work elsewhere. They might also have useful ideas about how business operations and team development can be improved. After all, who will know working practises and procedure better than the people on the ground?

Incentivise great performance

It can sometimes be hard to motivate your employees to continually work to the best of their abilities. Incentives are a great way of keeping them engaged, and can help to redress salary disputes without complicated appraisals. You might find that cash is not the best incentive, but that offering freedoms in terms of remote or flexible working can motivate them to work harder and gain more satisfaction from their work.

Be Ready

Don’t get complacent – your employees can leave at any time. This is why employers should always have some recent candidates on file to fill their shoes. An urgent hire could be lurking just around the corner, so ensure that you retain applicant details when advertising jobs. Keeping these on file also increases your bargaining power when negotiating with employees who you fear will leave.

Where possible, create written procedure documents which record working practises. These can serve as instructional manuals for new employees and helps a business to become scalable. It means that managers can increasingly step back from the “coal face”.

Don’t underestimate the importance of your employees

Retaining talent can be a key ingredient in ensuring the long term success of a business, and many companies work very hard to ensure that employees don’t walk or that in that event new people with the right skills are available quickly. As the economy or a particular sector expands more recruiters will begin poaching talent from industry leaders.

A good way to keep skilled talented people in your company is to find the right kinds of training organisations so that, should anyone leave, their replacements are given every chance to improve themselves up to the level you require. There are so many training companies and it’s hard to know where to look, so you’re always good to look for local colleagues as the quality of the lessons and qualifications given is strictly monitored. If you decide to look for specialised professional training providers – look for somewhere with an established name, like Impact International, who can boast a varied of courses, ranging from employee engagement, leadership development, talent management, etc.

There are a number of ways of retaining good people within an organisation, and the easiest way to find out how to achieve this is to ask them. Most people are seeking a higher salary or wage, but others will value autonomy, additional holiday, insurance policies and other employee benefits. Gym membership, wildlife trust membership of even travel cards can all be a motivation for employees to stay. Benefits that accrue over their time at the organisation are the most effective in keeping them around for many years.

If you need any more advice, I found a great article on keeping good employees. It’s short and sweet, but pretty useful. Good luck with your workforce in 2013.

Image: joncandy http://www.flickr.com/photos/joncandy/6621615905/sizes/o/in/photostream/

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