A company’s biggest asset is its staff, an asset comprising individual people with independent minds. If any one of these is unhappy, they can up and leave. Staff turnover is expensive and time-consuming, so it makes good business sense to ensure that they don’t want to leave.
In fact, retaining employees is a crucial commercial advantage because it saves money on lengthy recruitment and induction training, and loss of productivity. A 2014 report by Oxford Economics puts the cost of replacing a member of staff at around £30,000. That’s per employee.
There are many ways you can maintain employee engagement – for example through HR processes and company culture, as well as incentives. Easy to implement, incentives are an ideal approach to staff retention, as they have favourable outcomes for both employer and employee, having been proven to have a positive effect on productivity and protecting businesses against the cost of staff churn.
Employee incentives appeal because they provide your people with an additional reward for doing their best; put simply, it makes them feel appreciated. If their boss is making the effort to offer a tangible ‘well done’ in the shape of an award, the employee understands that they are valued and considered to be important. This is worth a great deal in terms of staff retention (and productivity) as most people naturally want to make a difference in their day-to-day roles, and hard work that is acknowledged creates a sense of job satisfaction.
Knowing that there’s something in it for them makes employees work even harder to do a good job and get results: sales increase and profits improve because staff are driven to achieve not only for the company, but for themselves as individuals.
It also goes without saying that once you recognise a staff member is particularly talented, you’ll want to make sure they stay as long as possible and not get poached by your competitors.
Staff churn has a negative impact beyond simple financial results: experienced staff who know their jobs are more productive and effective than those learning the ropes; meanwhile, if a trend of unhappy staff begins and employees leave, it can have knock-on effect on morale that causes others to follow. A negative atmosphere can spread fast and offering positive rewards for people to work towards is a proactive way of combating this situation.
For the best results, rewards need to be impressive and desirable. Whether that’s offering the ‘wow factor’ with something like a holiday, or considering how to really match a reward to an individual, that is up to each company to decide in terms of their budget and their culture.
You can maximise the impact that your programme has by personalising rewards; staff will feel all the more appreciated as they will believe their manager has taken real notice of them as a person and not just a “number”. This generates loyalty and good feeling, and will make staff want to stay and strive within the company rather than look elsewhere.
Alternatively, offering options that allow your staff to choose the reward they want can be a really effective strategy, as it adds desirability.
Contemporary incentive programmes can be very easy to set up and get going, with bespoke platforms available to fit your needs and work with your processes. Plus they can function as a transparent 365 platform. This allows management to easily monitor staff progress and interaction, and employees to easily check on their status or select the rewards they want to work for. It really is this easy to get an employee incentive programME up and running!
Don’t hesitate to contact us for more information about how an incentives program can help you get the best from your team and retain talented members of staff.