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Tips for Keeping Employees in a Tight Labor Market

by | IntelliTrans | Sep 8, 2022 | Blog News

The second part of a two-part blog series on how to find and retain good employees in a tight labor market.

 In the first segment of this 2-part blog series we outlined some of the key strategies that companies are using to find new job candidates. With more employees seeking a change from their current jobs and low unemployment rates creating large gaps in the job market, keeping your human resources in place, happy and engaged in their work is equally as—if not more—important than successfully recruiting them in the first place.

With the costs to replace talent ranging from one half to two times the departing employees’ salary—and factoring in the cost to replace them plus the loss of valuable expertise when they leave—companies across the board are putting more effort into their retention strategies.

And according to Quantum Workplace, employee confidence in the job market has increased since the pandemic emerged, with the majority of employees (58%) reportedly confident in finding another job that pays as much as their current one. And, the company says 52% of employees are confident they could find another job that they believe is as good as their current one.

“From small businesses to major corporations, the so-called Great Resignation is hitting companies hard,” Rachel Hastings writes in 12 Employee Retention Strategies for Your Company.  “Data suggests this trend isn’t slowing down, either. In fact, recent figures show that more than four in 10 workers are considering quitting their current jobs, given in part by the availability of positions and new opportunities opened by the shift to remote work.” 

The good news is that there are some tried-and-tested strategies that you can use to buck this trend and keep your associates happy in their roles, contributing to the overall success of the organization and less apt to look elsewhere for new job opportunities. Here are five that you can start using today:

  • Invest in your employees’ careers. According to LinkedIn, 94% of employees would stay with their current employers longer if those companies invested in their career development. “In today’s economy, employees understand that they need to keep their skills sharp to remain competitive and move up the ladder,” Hastings writes. Do this by offering mentorship programs and investing in additional education for employees. You can also use online professional education courses to reskill and upskill your employees, grow your talent base and increase employee satisfaction.
  • Make them feel valued. One Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) survey found that 68% of human resources (HR) professionals said that recognition was important for retention. Organizations that lack formal recognition programs can start by encouraging managers to recognize the work of their direct reports. “They can also go further to offer division- or company-wide recognition of staff who go the extra mile,” Hastings suggests. “During the pandemic, when many employees have been forced to manage difficult circumstances amid ever-changing conditions, that recognition is especially important.”
  • Keep them informed and open up the lines of communication. Dishonesty is one of the fastest ways to alienate your employees,” The Predictive Index “When big changes are happening, try to stay transparent and forthright with your employees through top-down communication. They’ll be more likely to face the new challenges with you—instead of running for the door.” And make sure your employees know that their voices are being heard, and particularly when they encounter challenges. “Nothing saps motivation like a problem you can’t fix,” it adds. “If you want your employees to have a long, happy tenure, they need to know they have a voice in your organization.” 
  • Give your employees some ownership over their roles. This will help workers become more invested in their work and more likely to stay onboard versus seeking out other job opportunities. “Not only will employees feel like part of a team (and hence less inclined to leave), but they will also feel valued by being given responsibility and freedom over their tasks,” Medium points out . “Staff members who feel that your company has their best interests at heart are far less likely to seek employment elsewhere — or even look for another job internally.”

Show appreciation and gratitude. This should always be a part of any employer’s strategy, but it does bear repeating. According to Medium, 77% of employees would stay longer at their current job if they felt more appreciated by their employers. The good news is that recognition doesn’t have to be expensive or resource intensive; it can be as easy as a kind word or an invitation to lunch. “And on top of all that, studies show that engaged workers are significantly more productive and bring higher profit margins to their company than disengaged workers,” the publication adds. “All of these perks make showing appreciation an easy and powerful retention tool for 2022 and beyond.”

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