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22 May 2023
by Stacey Lowman

Losing employees? 3 areas to consider to boost retention

With the cost of living crisis continuing to bite, employees are looking around for better deals – and that doesn’t just mean in pay

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In the wake of The Great Resignation, employees are continuing to reevaluate their roles in the light of their lifestyle preferences and personal values. If conditions no longer meet their needs, employees will simply move elsewhere for more suitable opportunities and perks.

As an employer, when you’re at the mercy of your staff’s ever-evolving needs and wants in their work-life balance, what can you do to persuade them to stay?

There are three key areas to consider when developing a strategy to boost retention.

1. Be the better alternative

Claro Wellbeing carried out research in late 2022 to gain insight into the mindset of UK employees during the cost-of-living crisis. Asked what their main motivating factor in looking for a new job was, respondents cited better leadership and management as their first priority, followed by flexibility in hours and location. Workers clearly want a mix of effective leaders, along with the freedom and trust to set their own hours of work and where they do it.

Respondents also mentioned feeling undervalued as the third-biggest factor in wanting a new job. It follows the trend of seeking guidance and trust from employers, where employers are failing to make their staff feel valued, potentially through lack of faith in letting them work autonomously.

The least-motivating factor for our respondents was a better company culture. Just 6% were determined to find a new role elsewhere for that reason. Companies that are using their culture to attract new talent should adjust their priorities, as it’s evidently low on the list of jobseekers’ wants.

A more urgent plan of action is to evaluate the effectiveness of leadership choices, working conditions and employee recognition schemes to mitigate the risk of resignations for those reasons.

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2. Some benefits matter more than others

Benefits are a key factor in retaining staff and can boost morale among teams. We asked employees two questions – which benefit they’d most like their employer to offer and which benefits are most valuable when considering a new role.

Among the top answers were the same perks for each. From both current and potential employers, people want a cycle-to-work scheme, health insurance, mental health support, a financial education and wellbeing programme, rewards vouchers and child care support. That is where their priorities currently lie – in the themes of physical, mental and financial health.

In the quest to prevent staff from leaving, you must also prepare for the inevitable and mitigate long-term hiring struggles by ensuring that you’re attracting high-quality talent when new roles become available.

When asked which benefits they consider to be a waste of money, respondents cited office perks like ping pong tables and beer tops among their least favourites, along with bringing dogs to work, flu vaccinations, eye care vouchers and commuting loans.

3. What's popular? 

To gain further insight, we asked workers what could persuade them to stay up to an extra year in their current role.

A pay rise was the top answer, followed by better work/life balance. Amid the rising cost of living in this post-Covid-19 pandemic world, the data follows an expected pattern.

Employees need better compensation to keep up with rising inflation and the freedom to comfortably live their lives. If pay rises are an option, they’re a surefire way to guarantee employee retention when you’re fulfilling these needs.

Another top incentive was helping staff manage their finances. A total of 81% of employees said they would like help from their employer during the cost-of-living crisis. This reflects the desire for a pay rise and a potential solution if that isn’t an option for employers right now.

If teams are requesting regular pay reviews to keep up with soaring inflation, a strong solution is bringing in a financial wellbeing strategy for all employees, focusing on education on spending, saving and budgeting habits, along with other pressing matters like mortgages, pensions and emergency funds.


In partnership with Claro Wellbeing

A financial wellbeing benefit to support your team where it matters most

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