What is Attrition?
Employee Attrition is the naturally occurring, voluntary departure of employees from a company. It simply means leaving a job for personal reasons, lack of professional motivation, job mismatch, issues in the workplace, etc. Within the context of human resources and Workforce planning, attrition is a reduction in the workforce caused by retirement or resignation, without plans to fill or replace that vacant job position. Outside the HR context, the term attrition refers to a reduction in strength or a weakening – which is likely the reason why the term has a negative connotation, even when there can be positive outcomes resulting from a reduction in staff. While some attrition is to be expected in normal business operations, a high level of reduction can lead to problems and lack of manpower.
Both attrition and turnover decrease the number of employees in a company however, it is worthy to note that attrition differs from employee turnover. Basically, attrition is voluntary, meaning it is the employee who decided to leave the company. The reason usually being retirement or resignation. Turnover on the other hand can be voluntary or involuntary because it includes employees who leave because of their own conscious choice plus employees who are involuntarily terminated or discharged. In many cases, layoffs can be viewed as attrition because of a reduction in staff that is not immediately replaced by new workers. However, it should be noted that some layoffs are temporary, meaning workers are ultimately called back to work.
For large enterprises like contact centers, attrition is often viewed as an unavoidable cost of doing business. Employee attrition affects both high and low performers alike. However, when top performing employees who are responsible for driving sales and increasing revenue become demotivated and start looking for the exit, it is known as negative attrition. Negative attrition implies a larger, more serious problem within an organization.
Factors Affecting Employee Attrition
The Workplace Was Not as Expected: New hires sometimes enter organizations with a wide range of illusions and unrealistic expectations. In some cases, the employees’ expectations may not have been unrealistic, but these unmet expectations may be the top reason most employees leave and leave quickly. The more clearly an employee understands his or her own expectations, the higher the probability of a match. Many individuals are only dimly aware of their wants and needs however, the problem gets compounded when the organization is also not clear about what it expects, which is often the case.
Poor Mentorship and Feedback Programs: Teresa Amabile and Steven Kramer in the book ‘The Progress Principle’ said: When you do not manage for progress, no amount of emotional intelligence or incentive planning will save the day. A Lack or an inadequate mentorship and feedback program is a major cause of employee disengagement. Companies need to give and take feedbacks also employees need to be trained to make sure that their efforts stay aligned with organizational and unit goals and the expectations of direct supervisors. This alignment is a necessary precondition for employee engagement. Managers and supervisors should understand that, giving good feedback and coaching is more than having a series of meetings – it is about building an open and trusting relationship between the manager and the employment.
Few Growth and Advancement Opportunities: So much has changed in the worldwide business climate and in the way, businesses now operate that the impact of these changes on the careers of individuals working in organizations need to be acknowledged. Fewer younger workers now seek traditional full-time jobs or long-term employment with one company. Many employees especially those that belong to the generations X and Y prefer the short-term goals of job challenge, vacation time and new skills acquisition over traditional rewards such as promotion and long-term benefits.
Here at DelonJobs, we have provided below 6 effective ways to help you reduce attrition rate in your company and retain your employees.
- Realistic Job Previews: Engagement practices like training all hiring managers and recruiters to give realistic job previews with every job candidate, increasing hiring from employee referrals, creating a realistic job description with a short list of the most critical competencies, conducting interviews or selection processes in a way that provides a sample of on-the-job experience and having hires complete post-hire questionnaires amongst others. These practices can assist in bridging the gaps created by unmet expectations.
- Engaging Your Employees: According to Gallup, 52% of employees are not engaged and 18% are actively disengaged. Conducting periodic feedback sessions to evaluate the performance of your employees should be mandatory. The workplace environment should be in such a way that will increase creativity in the workplace should be encouraged. Managers and supervisors should be made to understand that it is not possible to reduce employee attrition rates without proper employee engagement.
- Train Your Middle Managers: the middle level managers and supervisors should be professionally trained to handle their subordinates to reduce attrition. It is often said that people their bosses and not the jobs, therefore, conduct sessions for your middle level managers with the HR team to develop people skills.
- Compensation: Have a statistical model of the compensation you are providing, and compensation provided by your competitors. If there are considerable differences, then they should consider re-evaluating your compensation structure. Balancing the model will not only reduce the attrition rates for the company, it will also make your employees find ways to demonstrate their value at work.
- Professional Recruitment Strategy: An unclear recruitment process sends mixed messages to your employee regarding his role and job description. This leads to a frustrating onboarding and work experience for the new employee and motivates him to search for alternatives. This is the area in which human resource management should be critical in dealing with. Establishing a proper connection with previous work experience will aid professional development.
- Development Though A Learning Atmosphere: According to Medium, 70% of millennials would quit their job if the learning potential were limited. Create an atmosphere for learning for all the departments. Introducing new techniques, providing accurate job descriptions and technology at your workplace would not only aid professional growth but help to keep in check the attrition rate.
In conclusion, it is necessary to conduct seminars and short courses to enhance your employee’s skill. Take frequent feedback from employees. Ask them the direction in which they would like to see their career move and whether the company is doing enough to satisfy their professional huger. Even exit interviews can be introduced and with this, HR leaders can ride the wave of the high attrition rate occurring naturally in the workforce and embrace this trend in shaping an engaged, productive and dedicated workforce.