You’ve probably heard the common phrase: “Your employees are your greatest asset”. 

At Homebase, we know that the biggest impact on the success of any business is the people within it. Happy employees equal higher retention, increased efficiency, and happier customers. However, in 2013 alone, the service industry experienced an 82% turnover rate, costing small businesses approximately $3,500 per employee. So what are the driving motivators for employees to change jobs, and what can you do to improve employee retention?

1. Create flexible working hours

Over two-thirds of all service-industry employees are under 35 years old, where 3 out 10 fall into the 19-26 age bracket. Often, they’re students balancing inconsistent study schedules or people working multiple  jobs. Being flexible to your employees’ personal obligations when building a schedule and gives them the ability to give input into their start, greatly improve their satisfaction.

2. Be consistent

Recently, The NY Times in their Aug 13 feature, profiled a 22-year old employee struggling to provide childcare to her child whilst balancing an erratic schedule. She reported that she rarely learned her schedule more than 3 days before the start of a workweek – a common practice amongst small businesses. Creating consistent weekly schedules, weeks in advance, are big wins if you’re looking to improve employee retention. Homebase users are able to create reusable templates tailored to an employee’s availability for smarter scheduling.

3. Offer training

Offering training and the ability to employees to gain skills can be greatly improve their contentment (and productivity) within their work. Some ways to provide more training can include

4. Incentivise results

You’re likely to be insanely busy, but don’t forget to reward your star performers. Results that go unnoticed can be very deflating to employees and gives them a reason to start looking elsewhere. Look at ways to keep track of employees that consistently perform (like the on-time arrivals reports we provide in Homebase) and reward appropriately. Your employees will appreciate the recognition and feel inspired to continue their efforts.

5. Communicate!

Last, but definitely not least, communication is fundamental to any relationship, and is particularly important in the workplace. Most small businesses still manage employee communications on paper or verbally, which can easily result in lost or forgotten information such as time-off or shift trade requests. Putting systems in place that improve the ability to quickly and clearly communicate with employees can have a huge impact on their output. As part of Homebase, we include SMS, email and real-time messaging capabilities out-of-the-box so Managers can effectively communicate with their employees.

There you have it – 5 tips to increase employee retention and improve your leadership skills. Do you have any others to add? Tweet us @joinhomebase.

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