Employee Engagement Employee Retention

How you can manage employee turnover effectively

employee turnover

Employee turnover is like that one family member we all have that you don’t mention around decent folks - the oompie who causes fisticuffs at rugby matches or the cousin who smokkels exam papers at their high school. It’s common knowledge that every family has a few bad apples, but you don’t exactly want to go around advertising it. The same goes for an uncomfortably high employee turnover rate; it just looks icky. 

However, just like those funky family members won’t be dropping off the face of the planet (or Facebook, let’s not forget about Facebook!) any time soon, employee turnover will always be a thing. As such, clever companies choose to embrace it in order to learn from the churn.

Here are are few tactics your HR and Ops team can employ to manage employee turnover more effectively: 


1. Refine your hiring processes

When you take a look at the stats that came to light during the Universum 2019 survey in the leadup to the announcement of the most attractive South African employers, one of the key takeaways is that SA companies need to be more circumspect in who they employ.

Winani Ndlovu, research manager at the employer branding specialist company, was quoted as saying that companies should be doing far more work to align their employer brand with both potential hires’ and existing employees’ preferences if they want to mitigate the costs of losing key talent. 

"Apart from the costs around recruitment, on-boarding and training, the broader effects include lost productivity during the time it takes to find a suitable candidate, low morale of other employees, and the negative impact of a high turnover rate," said Ms Ndlovu.

And therein lies our first bit of advice with regard to the effective management of employee turnover - start by hiring the right people for the job. 

READ:  HR, here’s how you predict your company’s employee turnover rate


2. Check in with your employees on a regular basis

If you look at the key components of any proper employee engagement, you’ll likely notice ‘regular performance reviews and check-ins with staff’ on the lineup.

When a business’ HR and Ops teams make a point of keeping their finger on the pulse of the enterprise, it’s much simpler to address any issues that may be cropping up. A single annual review may seem less time-consuming, but in the long run, shorter more frequent conversations with individual employees can vastly reduce your employee turnover rate

READ: 5 Ways to identify a disengaged employee and what you can do about it


3. Conduct proper exit interviews

When an employee leaves, whether it be due to voluntary turnover or involuntary turnover, make a point of conducting a comprehensive exit interview. No member of your workforce will ever be as truthful as they are right before they head out the door and are allowed to say their piece. This is a great opportunity to find out more about what’s happening at the grassroots level and what you can do to keep your star players around. 


4. Address cultural challenges head on

If, throughout the course of your regular employee check-ins and thorough exit interviews, you cotton on to the fact that there are recurring themes that crop up, you should take the time to address it. For instance, you may find that certain managers are not living up to your company values, or that employees feel that there is little room for growth within the enterprise. Take these valuable lessons and make a point of addressing these cultural challenges head on in order to improve employee turnover. 


5. Keep up with your ORM

Do you know what’s being said about your company out there on the WWW? Make a point of assigning a member of your HR team to keep an eye on platforms like Glassdoor, where current and former employees anonymously review companies. ORM (online reputation management) is very important in this day and age if you wish to attract the right kind of employee.

So, there you have it - if you want to manage employee turnover effectively at your place of business, start by: 


  1. Making sure that you’re hiring the right people to start with. 
  2. Not leaving your employees hanging - check in with them regularly!
  3. Ensuring that your company culture is nimble enough to adapt. 
  4. Using exit interviews to learn valuable employee retention lessons. 
  5. Keeping an eye on what’s being said about your business online. 

Following these guidelines will help you to turn your work environment into a place that attracts and retains top talent.

If you're serious about addressing voluntary turnover at your company, we'd like to invite you to take a look at our SaaS-based employee recognition platform. This innovative tool allows you to recognise and reward team efforts on the fly and even has time-efficient employee satisfaction surveys built into the user-friendly functionality.

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