There has been much discussion amongst HR experts in recent years in regards to the level of loyalty shown by employees for the companies they work for. But how to go about inspiring loyalty when it is widely felt that we are a workforce permanently on the move?
Loyalty is a two way street...
Most experts would agree that loyalty is a two-way street. A loyal employee is not just the one who has been in the job for years. They are the ones who understand and contribute to your company’s mission and show integrity, give praise to others, disagree in private but support decisions publicly, listen, give positive energy to a team and when they leave, have a good reason for it. So how can employers and managers inspire this behaviour?
The key is effective communication, approving, admiring and giving attention to employees when they deserve it. A team meeting is very effective, bringing people together to discuss issues, make plans and share news, builds company spirit and brings people closer together.
Ensure your induction and appraisal system is carried through properly, or consider implementing them. A good induction process is vital for integrating new employees into a team and creates a sense of belonging for them. An appraisal system is equally as valuable as it is a chance to discuss performance and to give praise and feedback.
Consider getting employees involved in different projects in your company and take them off normal tasks to do this. A break from the sometimes mundane aspects of everyone’s jobs can be a tonic and give employees a sense of contributing much more.
If you recognise potential in a new employee you could consider offering the company benefits earlier to employees, such as health care packages and holiday increments (some companies increase holiday entitlement by one day per year of service).
Small things can make a big difference.....
Small things can make a big impact perhaps offer vouchers or gifts for length of service or good attendance, recognition through enhanced job titles or offer a flexible working day/lunch occasionally.
A ‘well done’ from a manger or supervisor is always welcomed, but you could consider giving hand written cards or small gift cards from senior management at Christmas for example. Recognition from an MD or CEO is thought to mean far more to employees than is realised.
The costs involved in these gestures are minimal when you consider that the estimated recruitment costs of a new hire averages between £10 - £20k per vacancy, depending on the recruitment route you take and rises with labour costs.*
Ultimately rewards are only a small part of inspiring loyalty which is itself part of a bigger retention strategy. The environment, relationships, support, growth and effective management as well as a clear company mission will bind people to your company and help retain your excellent staff.