Even the best idea for a business will flop without the right mix of human power behind it. After all, employees are the people on the ground making decisions that can make or break an employer’s bottom line, day in and day out. Just as important as what product or service your company is providing is who’s at the helm—of each department, team and project.
Optimizing your organization’s workforce requires understanding how to attract and retain top talent. By hiring well and giving top performers a reason to stay with your company, you’ll end up reducing costly turnover—and saving the human resources department a huge headache in the process. You’ll also contribute to a company culture of growth and innovation rather than one of stagnancy and high staff renewal rates.
Here are a few tips on enticing the best employees to work for your business and incentivizing them to stay.
Invest in Your People
When employees get the sense leaders care more about processes and profits than they do about people, they start to feel undervalued in their roles. Underappreciation is a catalyst for people seeking out new positions in which they feel more fulfilled.
Investing in people means more than just paying lip service to how much you appreciate employees, though. It means allotting actual resources to helping them learn and grow. It means providing leadership pathways and skills training for staff members.
Forbes cites “lack of people investment” as the main reason more than 90 percent of employees start looking elsewhere, per a Gallup poll. But not only will developing your workforce motivate current workers to stay, but it’ll also strengthen your brand—making your company more competitive to potential applicants and interviewees.
Offer Access to Data Analytics
Another factor affecting how well your company manages to attract and retain top talent is its access to technology. Believe it or not, it’s one of the biggest reasons employees stay or leave a job. And what do they want most from their workplace tech? Access to data.
What analytics tools are you currently making available to your workforce? What system updates are in the pipeline? Outdated software, siloed IT and disjoined use of business applications will only hamper even the most diligent employees’ efforts.
If your business is still running legacy systems, consider the benefits of upgrading—especially if it’s been a few years, or decades, since you’ve revisited how your company handles business intelligence. The Wall Street Journal notes, one survey found that more than 60 percent of employees “are seeking better access to business data.” Despite this desire, more than one-third of employees say current IT systems make it complicated or time-consuming to access business data without assistance.
Legacy BI systems required IT specialists to act as a go-between, performing queries and generating reports on behalf of “non-technical” employees. But the rise of self-service data analytics has changed this, allowing business users across an organization to ask questions and receive answers in seconds that are automatically formatted into whatever interactive chart fits best. This is a game-changer in terms of putting important insights directly into users’ hands. It also gives employees a sense of autonomy and engagement with data to drive decision-making.
Allow Flexible Work Arrangements
The days of requiring employees to be at their desks from 9 to 5 are dwindling as more forward-thinking organizations allow for flexible work arrangements. Candidates now want to know before accepting an offer: Will I be able to work from home? Can I set some of my own hours? Companies with infrastructure in place to support flexible work arrangements will have an easier time hiring the best candidates and keeping them on staff, plain and simple.
Successfully implementing work-from-home and flex-hours policies means setting expectations ahead of time, of course. Make sure employees know their limits, and develop a way to ensure everyone is still meeting their deadlines and communicating effectively with the team.
Investing in your workforce, giving employees access to user-friendly BI and accommodating flexible work arrangements will go a long way in attracting and retaining top talent.