Turnover: Understanding and prevention

"When you play professionally, you get accustomed to turnover. Players come and go – they get injured, they get transferred, they get cut from the team. Coaches are hired, and coaches are fired. It's just part of the world you live in," Athlete Tim Howard explained.

Similar to the world of sport, businesses can often lose their star performers; however, there is not always a well-trained replacement waiting in the wings at many companies.

Staff leaving a business is usually always an issue, especially given the difficulties in finding suitable replacements and bringing them up to speed. This turnover means costly hiring processes, expensive training and and potentially issues with the new employees.

This is clearly something businesses will want to avoid. But how?

To avoid turnover, understanding is key.

Getting to the bottom of the issue

In a report released last year, research firm Robert Half surveyed over 2,100 CFOs and more than 300 employees in the US, asking CFOs: "Which one of the following is most likely to cause good employees to quit their jobs?", and workers: "Which one of the following is most likely to cause you to quit your job?". The results were interesting.

At the top of the list for both parties was inadequate remuneration – salary and benefits. A significant 28 per cent of CFOs said this was the reason staff would be likely to quit, while 38 per cent of employees agreed. There's certainly a disconnect here.

Following this was limited opportunities for advancement (CFOs: 22 per cent, employees: 20 per cent) and unhappiness with management (CFOs 14 per cent, employees: 16 per cent). Other factors included job boredom and a lack of recognition.

Given the gap in understanding about turnover between employees and CFOs – it's clear that work is needed from management to close the gap.

Anne Fisher, a contributor for Fortune, spoke with Dan Amos, the CEO of Alfac. He explained that it's really not difficult to get to the bottom of why staff leave. "If you want to know what would keep someone from quitting, ask," he said.

"It sounds like common sense, but not many companies really do it."

How can businesses prevent turnover?

How can businesses prevent turnover?

Human Resources Expert Susan Heathfield said that company culture was a critical area of focus, as it encompasses benefits, how employees are treated and any other perks. However, she pointed out that good relationships were key to retaining staff – a point reiterated by Gallup.

In research released this year, the organisation stated that around half of a surveyed 7,200 adults left their jobs to get away from a manager, and that those who held regular meetings were more likely to engage staff.

Relationships aside, there's an area that can prove essential for retaining staff – engagement through education.

Engaging staff through frameworks

As the Robert Half release noted, staff value opportunities for advancement – progression that's able to take them further in their careers. With this in mind, it's easy to see why workers would choose to stay with a business when additional training is on offer.

Framework and methodology training is an excellent consideration, given that it provides best practice training across a number of areas. For example, SABSA focuses on best practice in security. This is always important, given the risk of business data breaches.

There are also management frameworks, which educate staff in the most capable ways to control projects, whether small in-house developments of large conferences.

With frameworks being a great tool to progress the skills of your staff, and subsequently keep them engaged in the company, it's a good idea to speak to a course provider about the available options.

At ALC Training, we've got subject matter experts who host a variety of courses across a number of frameworks, including PRINCE2 and ITIL.