Without your employees your business simply would not exist. Even an internet-based startup with a garage address and no Fed Tax ID hasn’t a prayer of getting off the ground—or out of the garage—without investing in hiring employees. Employees are so integral to business, in fact, that they’re baked right into the very definition of the word.
The hiring process isn’t free. The average cost associated with recruiting any given entry-level, administrative position can set a company back roughly $3,000, according to The Society of Human Resource Management. If a company seeks to hire a mid-level manager or an executive CFO, you can bet those recruiting costs are going to shoot through the roof.
There are job board fees, candidate assessment costs, external recruiter expenses, employer branding efforts, criminal background checks services, and the list of recruitment expenses goes on.
Think you can avoid these costs? You can try, but the likelihood of hiring someone who is radically unqualified to handle their position will increase exponentially, which could immediately result in your company footing the bill to have them properly educated and trained.
There’s simply no getting around properly vetting your applicants and investing in the recruitment process. When you do, your business will be staffed with better employees who possess more knowledge and enthusiasm. Your biggest challenge at that point will be retaining them.
And, yes, retaining valuable employees will be an ongoing challenge, one which you must also invest in. Why? The answer might stun you. The cost of replacing a valuable employee will surpass the cost of having hired that employee in the first place.
There will always remain a percentage of employees who are considering leaving your company. At any given time, quitting will be on the minds of at least some of your personnel. It’s just a fact of life. But you, as the business owner, can greatly mitigate the chances that an employee actually resigns.
It should come as no surprise; unhappiness is the greatest factor that leads to employees resigning. Employee unhappiness can be due to low satisfaction, a lack of rewards incentives, undesirable pay, or a combination of all three.
The greatest deterrent for losing valuable employees, however, is to ensure that your employees feel rewarded as a result of working for you. In this article, we’ll show you how to provide your employees with rewarding experiences that keep them engaged, enthusiastic, and committed to working for you.
DETHRONE BOSSES AND ENCOURAGE LEADERSHIP INSTEAD
Having recently graduated at the top of her class, Linda was looking forward to applying her organizational skills and knowledge of software solutions that she’d acquired at University to her new position at a well-known company. Linda eased into her workload, taking careful note of the pre-standing systems that were in place. Those pre-standing systems, however, were archaic and out-of-date. Given all that Linda knew about productive workflows, cloud-based technologies, and the most scalable protocols available, thanks to her degree, she felt compelled to consolidate her suggestions into a presentation, sit down with her boss, and improve their department by implementing the workflows she’d learned. But when Linda did precisely that, detailing the key changes they could make to save the company time, money, and effort, Linda’s boss, Vincent, hardly appreciated the presentation.
“How we do things here is how we do them. If I wanted your opinion on the matter, I would’ve asked,” said Vincent, dashing Linda’s enthusiasm to pieces.
43% OF EMPLOYEES SEEK EMPLOYMENT ELSEWHERE DUE TO DISLIKING THE CORPORATE CULTURE AT THEIR WORKPLACE, ACCORDING TO HAYS RECRUITING EXPERTS WORLDWIDE.
Employees like contributing their expertise to the companies they work for. In fact, employees place a higher premium on having their ideas implemented than on receiving salary increases. When a new employee brings a new perspective to the conference table, the last thing the higher-ups should do is discount the employee’s suggestions. To the contrary, managers who are not only open minded to a team member’s suggestions, but also encourage that team member to take the reins and implement the very improvements that he or she has suggested tend to have the most enthusiastic, productive teams.
EMPLOYEES LEAVE COMPANIES TO ESCAPE BAD MANAGERS
Daniel prided himself on his ability to turn in quality work on time. Tight deadlines and a high-pressure environment had never negatively impacted his work performance as a copywriter at a well-known magazine. In fact, Daniel thrived in the fast-paced writers’ room like a well-oiled copywriting machine. All he needed in order to shine was the assignment itself from his editor, which included a whole host of pertinent information he must incorporate. Life for Daniel was great. But when the magazine positioned a new editor, Shoshana, above him, all that changed. Shoshana failed to give Daniel his assignments in a timely fashion, preferring instead to mention, piecemeal, what he might soon need to write about. If she gave him an assignment title, she forgot to tell him the word count. If she remembered the word count, she forgot to mention critical information that he must include in his copy. Time and time again, Daniel was expected to rewrite, revise, and exhaustively rewrite yet again as Shoshana delivered ad hoc assignment details to him long after the fact.
“Clearly, you’re not interested in being challenged,” Shoshana balked after Daniel had handed her his letter of resignation. “All you care about is money and living on Easy Street,” she added. Daniel rolled his eyes, turned on his heel, and marched out the door towards a better employment opportunity.
89% OF COMPANY OWNERS WRONGLY BELIEVE THAT THEIR EMPLOYEES QUIT DUE TO WANTING A HIGHER SALARY, ACCORDING TO LEIGH BRANHAM, AUTHOR OF THE 7 HIDDEN REASONS EMPLOYEES LEAVE.
Every position requires a unique skillset. The good news is that your employees already possess the required skills to accomplish excellent work for you. As a business owner, it’s your job to listen to them. In our example above, Daniel had enough experience to know what he needed in order to keep up with his workload. But rather than support Daniel’s needs, his manager instead assumed that Daniel should be capable of bending to her will, even if doing so made his life difficult. It is not a manager’s place to dictate to his or her subordinates what they do or do not need, what they should or should not complain about, or what they can or cannot do. Supportive managers promote employee retention while bad managers drive good employees away.
CREATE PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES IN-HOUSE
Whitney had been maintaining the same marketing position at a prominent advertising agency for over twenty years. She loved her career, but when massive changes began sweeping the industry as the result of technological innovations, Whitney struggled to keep up. Unwilling to fall to the wayside, she spent every spare moment she had educating herself on the advances that were being made within the advertising industry. But it soon became all too clear that unless she enrolled in digital marketing and social media courses, she would only be doing the agency a disservice the longer she stayed on. Having researched the most affordable classes she could take at the nearby college, Whitney grew very excited about all that she would learn and the many ways she would be able to benefit the advertising agency once she was properly educated. The next day, Whitney sat down with the heads of her department to see if they would be willing to invest in her professional development so that she could continue to grow with the company as well as with the times.
“That’s so thoughtful of you, Whitney,” they said, “but you don’t need to trouble yourself with all that. The entry-level marketers we’ve been hiring have taken all of those courses. They’ll handle that aspect of the department for us. You just keep doing what you’re doing and take it easy.”
94% OF EMPLOYEES WOULD STAY LONGER IF THEIR COMPANY INVESTED IN THEIR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT, ACCORDING TO THE LINKEDIN 2018 WORKPLACE LEARNING REPORT.
When an employee comes to you, expressing interest in gaining additional skills that will improve his or her overall work performance, you will only demoralize their spirits if you dismiss the idea. One of the most valuable characteristics of an employee is a willingness to learn and grow, and to contribute their abilities to the growth of the company. Many business owners fear the raw expense of enrolling an employee in continuing education courses, even when those courses are online. And even more so than the cost of the course itself, many business owners fear that if they invest in the professional development of an employee, that employee will in due time demand a higher salary that reflects the new value they’re able to bring to the company. This is where in-house professional development has the power to dispel all fears. By instilling in-house mentorship alliances within your company, you can effectively disperse knowledge and skills throughout your departments, keep your employees engaged and learning, and ultimately retain valuable employees in the long run.
POP-UP SALES SCRIPTS FOR YOUR EMPLOYEE-FACING POS SCREENS
A lifelong surfing enthusiast, James was beyond thrilled to have been hired as the newest cashier at the one and only surf shop in his beloved seaside town. The little surf shop was finally back in business, having survived lockdowns, restricted operations, slow sales, and an unseasonable hurricane that had blown half its roof off. But due to poor cash flow, the owners were only able to offer their new employees, like James, sales commissions instead of hourly wages. Though there was a chance that James could work an entire shift without earning a penny, he didn’t bat an eye at the arrangement. All he cared about was working at the only business in town that he was passionate about. But all that changed when the veteran employees began swooping in and stealing his sales commissions.
“Will that be all?” James asked a customer whose new surfboard he had just scanned into the Point-of-Sale checkout register. Before the customer could respond, James’ coworker, Margot, swooped in and asked the customer if he would like to also buy a surfboard wax kit today in order to receive an overall 20% discount. James hadn’t known about the add-on product nor the discount. When the customer happily agreed to purchase the kit, Margot elbowed James out of the way and punched her employee code into the POS register, totally hijacking the sale, as James scowled at her from the sidelines.
70% OF MILLENNIAL EMPLOYEES SAY THEY WOULD QUIT A JOB IF THEIR POSITION LACKED HIGH PERFORMING, FAST TECHNOLOGY, ACCORDING TO JIVE COMMUNICATIONS.
As a business owner, you might be so grateful to have veteran employees like Margot that you accidentally sabotage passionate employees like James. All James would have needed in order to upsell additional products is information about those products in the first place, as well as information about any enticing discounts that would’ve made it possible for him to close a bigger sale at the register. This is when sales scripts come in handy as a strategy to both engage employees and increase sales. One of the leading Point-of-Sale technologies on the market today is Uplift, available exclusively at FTx. These “sales scripts” pop up on employee-facing POS screens to help cashiers upsell and cross sell at the registers. Uplift gives your cashiers, like James, the tools they need to properly communicate your deals, discounts, and specials to your customers. When your sales staff are able to succeed at the registers, they will feel rewarded, which is the biggest contributing factor to keeping your employees happy and retaining them.
ASSETS OR EXPENSES: YOUR EMPLOYEES WILL BE WHAT YOU MAKE OF THEM
While every employee should be valued, not every employee is irreplaceable. In fact, there are a lot of company positions that have become “revolving doors,” figuratively speaking. Entry-level bookkeepers or administrative assistants, for example, can move on from a company without leaving their departments vulnerable, so long as they provide their bosses with adequate notice. Interestingly, many companies rely on the “revolving door” nature of low-rung positions, because it ensures that the salaries of those positions remain low. Afterall, if an entry-level employee stays in their position for years on end, their salary will only go up as time passes, and eventually, the expense of their salary will burden their department’s budget.
Every company has at least a few employees who they cannot afford to lose. When a major technology company recruits a phenom coder, the coder is considered a “talent acquisition.” The employment contract will reflect this. Yet, when the same technology company hires a new executive assistant, the H.R. paperwork that follows is standard with no mention of the company having acquired talent.
Your talent assets, who are virtually irreplaceable, are your most valuable employees, likewise any specialists and managers who serve as the linchpins of their departments. Operations would screech to a halt if these employees left the company.
Differentiating between the personnel assets versus the personnel expenses within your employee pool isn’t so black-and-white, but for the sake of clarity, you can view any employee who directly contributes to sales as being an asset. Whereas, any employee who does not contribute to increasing the company’s revenue can be considered an expense. Retaining employee assets is crucial to the success of your business, as we touched upon throughout this article.
Ideally, you want to retain your employee assets, and you also want to turn your employees whose positions are categorically “expenses” into assets. For example, the cashier at a retail store might not seem like a business asset. She or he might seem replaceable. But this doesn’t have to be the case if you implement the tips we covered in this article.
Are you ready to improve employee engagement and retention at your business? FTx offers business solutions that amplify employee satisfaction while increasing sales. FTx POS, our user-friendly Point-of-Sale system, is a proven marketing powerhouse. Fully customizable, FTx POS comes with FTx Uplift, a premium add-on that allows business owners to create specially scripted promotions that automatically trigger when UPC codes are scanned into the POS.
Once triggered, these scripts “pop up” on the employee-facing POS screens. Your employees can simply read from the scripts, offering customers the chance to purchase last minute, money-saving products. FTx Uplift will give your cashiers the tools they need to properly communicate your promos and specials to your customers.