Keep your business thriving in today’s volatile job market

5 Minutes

January – a time for fresh starts and resolutions and, for a lot of people, a time to look for a new job. And this is especially true this January.

The trend for changing careers has been gathering apace since the early days of the pandemic. According to the Office for National Statistics, almost a million people changed jobs in the three months up to September last year and, back in November, The Guardian reported the shocking results of a survey forecasting The Great Resignation, with a quarter of the 6,000 workers interviewed by Randstad UK claiming they were planning to move roles in the next few months.

The impact of this for employers is considerable. The costs of recruitment, training, and of factoring in the diminished productivity of a new employee is estimated at as much as £25,000 for each worker! And this does not even consider the effect of disruption and the hit to general morale when a business loses employees. So, how do you retain your best staff and attract employees that are more likely to commit to your business for the long term?

Recruit with clarity

It is worth investing time revisiting your recruitment process to ensure that you’re not doing anything that could inadvertently contribute to a high staff turnover. Make sure candidates understand the purpose of your company and how they contribute to its operations and aims. Where possible, improve job specifications and titles and provide opportunities for progression. Staff retention is improved when employees have a sense of purpose and status.

Incorporating milestones in the induction process can also help keep employees invested in their future with your company.

Be mindful of the discrimination laws when you’re recruiting. ACAS publishes some useful resources about this and one of our lawyers would be happy to advise you on the matter if you require assistance.

Build community

There is no one way to create a sense of belonging or foster loyalty so an employee engagement survey may prove a useful exercise to identify motivators and establish patterns. If your most dissatisfied employees or recent leavers are all from Gen Z, you may unwittingly be failing to respond to their drivers. Perhaps, for example, you are not active enough in the online environments where relevant discussions happen. Collating this information can help inform strategies for retention.

It is worth remembering that community is not exclusively limited to the workplace. Many people appreciate working for a company with an ethical agenda and supporting a worthy cause can enhance your reputation with your employees. It can also promote team spirit, if your employees choose and work together on a project that benefits a charity.

Introduce staff incentives

You may be thinking about ways to incentivise your staff such as a share options scheme. This can be successful, but we would recommend that you consider it carefully as there can be hidden complications. What do you do if an employee who has been given shares in your business leaves, for example, and how do you give shares away and keep control of the direction your company takes?

Our lawyers have a lot of experience in this area and can help you think creatively about how to reward your staff. Whether you consider a salary sacrifice, or an incentive scheme, a pay rise, better health care or well-being benefits, we can help you implement a solution that doesn’t compromise your business. And if you do want to offer shares, we will help you create an arrangement that protects your interests. Please do get in touch if you would like to discuss this.

Get your contracts in order

It seems obvious, but it is important that your employment contracts are watertight. Be clear on notice and make sure they are signed.

Our lawyers are experts in employment law, so if you would like our help drafting or checking your contracts, please contact us.

The Legal Director

Phone: 020 3053 8613