Right now, you star employees are being relentlessly recruited by the competition with offers of healthy salaries, new challenges, enticing perks and the work-life balance that so many professionals prioritize these days. As much as you try to keep up with rising competitive salaries and evolving employee demands, you’re likely losing many of your best employees every year. If you’re at a loss as to how to stop it, here are a few tips for hiring and retaining your top accounting and finance talent.
The right people in the right roles
Everyone has unique talents and abilities that set them apart from others. But when an employee feels as though their skills don’t match the job requirements, it’s impossible for them to find genuine fulfillment in their role.
When you create job descriptions, develop not only job duties, but also that attributes needed to be successful in the position. Make sure job candidates match those attributes by asking probing questions or having them take a personality or behavioral assessment. When you get the right people in the right roles, you’ll have a team of talented people each contributing their unique abilities.
Comprehensive orientation program
There’s nothing more demoralizing than being admonished for breaking unwritten workplace rules during your early days in a new job. Take, for example, a new employee that checks her personal email during lunch, only to receive a warning that accessing personal email on the job is not permitted. She’s embarrassed and wondering why anyone didn’t tell her.
When a new employee joins your team, educate them on all workplace rules from day one. Your employee orientation program should detail not only obvious rules but also those that maybe unwritten. Ask your current staff what they know now that they wish they’d known when they were hired. You may be surprised at their answers, but their replies will help you develop a more comprehensive program.
Develop career paths
You’ve hired a talented individual who learns quickly and is soon doing everything you expected and more. Do you expect them to stay in that role indefinitely? Or do you offer increasingly challenging assignments? The best talent is not content to continue working in the same position for years on end. They want to learn more and take on new and exciting projects.
Develop career paths for all employees to show them where they can go and how they can get there. Vague promises of future opportunities simply don’t cut it anymore. Educated, motivated and intelligent people want more than empty promises. They want to know they don’t have to look elsewhere to take the next step in their careers. Show them they can take the next step with you through planning and communication.
Offer work/life balance
Discussions about work/life balance have moved past the buzzword stage to almost become cliché these days, but the fact remains: our lives are about more than work. Your people want to love their jobs, but they also want time for family, friends and self.
Encourage efficient work, not more work. Measure and reward employees for the value they create rather than the number of hours they sit at a desk. Hire people you trust and treat them as adults – capable of making responsible choices and managing their workload. Keep in mind that balance looks different to different people, so you may need to incorporate a number of solutions, including flexible working hours or days, telecommuting, etc. Define clear deliverables and give people responsibility for achieving them. You’ll likely find out that they’ll deliver far more often than they fall short.
Strategically building initiative to stop the turnover trend will go a long way in preventing the loss of your valuable employees. There are no simple solutions, but with a plan in place, your star employees are more likely to choose your organization as their chosen career path.