The fear that the great resignation, a phenomenon coined by the USA, could spread to other countries has put human resources departments around the world on alert. In 2020, more than four million U.S. workers left their jobs. Will it affect other economies? That’s the big question. For the time being, we can already see a reflection of that great resignation in countries such as Australia, France or the United Kingdom.
In Spain, although this phenomenon is not yet as notable, a record number of 5467 people left their jobs in April 2022. It’s clear that transoceanic paradigms are different. In countries such as Spain, where there’s not as much labor supply as in the USA, it is more difficult to find a job after resignation. This makes workers rethink more about quitting their current job, although the effects of the great resignation are still a possibility.
The goal: To reduce the turnover rate
Thousands of companies around the world are very concerned about the impact of the great resignation on the achievement of their goals. As a result, there’s a growing awareness of the great challenge of loyalty that lies ahead. Reducing the turnover rate as much as possible so that the high turnover rate does not affect their objectives.
The challenge of the great resignation lies in the change of mentality that companies must make regarding interactions with their employees. This change in mindset affects both hiring and work structures. This great challenge seeks to improve job satisfaction and commitment, so that the turnover rate decreases.
The 4 keys to fight the battle for talent
1. Employee hiring aligned with company culture and company core values
To combat the great resignation, we must lay the groundwork from the beginning, from the hiring process. To select the right person for each vacancy, we must ensure that we ask the right questions in the selection process. To find the right questions for our particular case, we must make a preliminary reflection exercise in which we:
- Detect those behaviors and rituals that inhabit the team.
- Inquire about the cultural beliefs of the employees.
- Define the company’s purpose.
In this way, we will be able to define the right questions to find the right candidate according to the cultural fit and face the great resignation will be more unlikely. It will also allow us to base our decisions not only on the candidate’s experience and knowledge, but also on their soft skills, abilities and behaviors.
2. Loyalty from onboarding, on acceptance of the offer
To face the great resignation and retain our talent, we must also emphasize the moment when a candidate accepts the job offer. From that moment on, the onboarding process should begin. This period of adaptation to the company is key to lay the foundations of what will be their employee experience.
To do this, a good onboarding process must be carried out, providing the necessary resources and ensuring that they understand the processes, values and company culture. It is a joint effort between the HR departments and the managers themselves to stand up to the great resignation.
There are several initiatives we can carry out in this onboarding phase to ensure the satisfaction and commitment of new employees:
- Organize one on one meetings: to provide confidence, understanding and support to the new team member. It is recommended to do one on one meetings at one month, 3 months and 6 months after their incorporation. This will ensure a good adaptation to their new position.
- Communicate the incorporation to the rest of the team: to facilitate working relationships with all colleagues in the company, not only with those in their own department or work team.
- Conduct a personal business model canvas with their manager: to try to understand how they think and find out what things they need to work efficiently and effectively.
- Organize internal training: so that the new team member is familiar with the processes of the different departments and roles.
- Create a roadmap: for the first steps in the team.
3. Leadership support and employee recognition
New generations demand new leadership styles. That is why companies must pay special attention to their leaders and their management styles. Styles such as the recently most acclaimed by the new generations, the so-called ‘bottom-up’ or ascending leadership.
In this style, leaders encourage employees to co-create, that is, to make contributions to the company. In this way, we manage to align the way of working with the three fundamental pillars to ensure satisfaction and commitment: transparency, autonomy and trust. By laying the foundations on these three pillars, facing the great resignation will be more improbable.
Following this leadership style it’s important to redefine work processes and implement methodologies such as:
- OKRs and Scrum: the implementation of a good system of short-term goals and projects as provided by OKRs combined with Scrum.
- One on one meetings: the creation of bonds of trust through one on one meetings where bi-directional feedback talks are held between the employee and the manager.
- Claps: foster a good working environment where employees feel listened to and valued, following a system of employee recognition such as claps.
- Career plans: the creation of career and development plans tailored to each employee.
4. Ensuring work-life balance
According to the Global Benefits Attitudes Survey, conducted by Willis Towers Watson, 57% of employees confirm that benefits and flexible compensation benefits are one of their top considerations before accepting and/or quitting a job. Here we have an important focus to tip the balance of the big resignation in our favor.
Therefore, companies will have to make a great effort and offer a strong value proposition to attract and retain talent. But also to generate community. To create ecosystems where creativity and innovation processes are extrapolated to other professionals.
There are several initiatives that ensure work-life balance. But it is certainly a constant challenge as each generation has a different concept of work-life balance. Some of the work-life balance initiatives that you can include in your company are:
- Remote work option.
- Exchange of overtime for days off.
- Flexible schedules aimed at achieving results.
- Hourly allowance to improve the work-life balance.
- Code of good practices with proposals for work disconnection.
- Sustainability and volunteer programs promoted by the company.
Many experts link the emergence of the great resignation to changes in employees’ life perspectives. It’s important to bear in mind that in today’s companies up to 5 different generations can coexist. This means meeting very different demands in terms of talent retention. Younger generations, for example, base their decisions on personal development opportunities rather than economic incentives.
All of this undoubtedly points to the fact that it is time to reinvent the wheel of labor relations. Companies must be aware of the great resignation and offer a strong value proposition. In this way, we will be able to reduce the turnover rate and have satisfied, motivated teams that are committed to the company’s purpose.
Measuring the work environment to anticipate turnover
The hardest thing of all? Detecting the impact of high turnover in time, before turnover rates skyrocket. There is no better way to do this than by measuring the work climate.
Gaining visibility into blind spots in your company, detecting toxic behaviors, conflicts and dissatisfaction, and discovering areas for improvement are some of the benefits of measuring the work environment. All of this will help you reduce turnover rates.