Employee turnover – how to prevent it in a post-COVID world?

There are plenty of changes and different needs that COVID-19 has brought to businesses. As an employer or a recruiter, the ways you proceeded with your work tasks have probably altered if not wholly, then at least noticeably. And while working on how to adapt to those changes in the pursuit of sustaining current operations and, optimally, helping the company thrive, are you sure that you are in line with the employees’ shifted expectations? More particularly, do you know what employees demand going forward? A recent study by Prudential reveals that, as the outbreak subsides and work returns to somewhat normal, 87% of the American workers would prefer to work at least 1 day per week remotely compared to only 13% who would like to go 5 days a week on-site. More alarmingly, the same study indicates that 1 out of every 4 current employees is planning to apply for a different job/company when the pandemic eases off – especially if the company does not offer remote work possibilities.  

survey by professional network Blind in LinkedIn on the same topic reports interesting results. When faced with the choice of better pay and working remotely, 64% of the respondents would let go of the extra cash for the remote work benefits. 

Similarly, in the big companies, the current employees that would go for a permanent work-from-home are:    












    JPMorgan Chase

    So, why is it that employee retention is so necessary? How do you decrease the chances of employee turnover? 

      Summary (TL;DR)
      As the pandemic eases off, more employees indicate that they would like to search for different companies to work for. Employee turnover has increased and it brings costs and loss of talent for companies. There are a couple of logical reasons for it. More importantly, leaders can observe, listen, adapt their communication and internal organizational practices in order to meet shifting employees’ needs. There are also newer technologies to support employee engagement and retention.

      Why is employee retention critical in 2021? 


      Just last year, from April to June 2020, a study by Work Institute revealed that voluntary employee quit rates have doubled. 

      Those stats show an undeniable truth – despite the uncertainty caused by the pandemic, that it is the employees who control the job market. And just as a bad hire costs plenty, so does employee turnover. 

      Sparkbay (a company working with employee engagement) has calculated the cost of employee turnover (see illustration): 

      Of course, the above is an estimate. You should keep in mind that the cost varies according to industry and company.

      Why is it that employees quit more? Experts predict 4 causes:

      Employees want to wait for the pandemic to calm and then change companies or careers

      After having to work remotely, many workers realized that working from home (or remotely) suited them better

      COVID-19 had an emotional impact on people, thus making them prioritize family and friend time – hence why they search for a better work-life balance

      The outbreak shifted job-related demands. This pushed employees to search for similar jobs (at least more so) to their original job positions

      How do you decrease the likelihood of employee turnover? 

      Rethink culture 

      The truth is that workers expect more of their employers. It could be different specifics, and leaders would not know if they do not communicate with their employees. The Prudential study has indicated that it all starts with you, the leader, and your consideration of how COVID-19 has changed the employee’s needs. 

      It would be best not to assume that your employees would be unconditionally happy to return to the office and have extensive interactions with others. While it could be true to some extent, it is highly possible that they do not want as much as before the outbreak in terms of onsite operations and interactions. 

      It is within the company’s culture that the power resides to keep or to make an employee quit. Some might need more remote work opportunities, more career opportunities within the company, more engagement or communication – the best practices are different for each company and its unique talent. You would never know unless you start asking and communicating openly with your employees – so begin today!  

      Use new technologies 

      As remote work becomes more and more regular and thus the staff is more geographically dispersed, employee engagement becomes even more challenging. 

      Women mention being spoken over or ignored over calls; there are also reports of increased intolerances between different people. Or, it could be simply time zone differences that can make collaboration more difficult. 

      More inclusive systems can help people work together without having to be in the exact physical location or working simultaneously, allowing remote workers to feel as connected to the company and its mission as those who share a physical space onsite. 

      See how you can hire for the right talent with Whaii Match

      Inclusive technologies can help you, leaders and recruiters, for selecting the person with not only the right hard skills, but also with their unique soft skills that maches your company culture. All to help both and companies have more engaged and happier employees.