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The labour drought and four effective ways to address it

(Source: Bigstock.)

The Great Resignation – Dear Boss, I quit.

  1. What is the root of problem?
  2. What are possible responses?
  3. How can you thrive in the new frontline reality?
  4. Where is the talent hiding?

The labour drought is unprecedented in its scale and mysterious in its origins. There has never been such a reluctance by the unemployed to go into open roles, as far back as labour-market data goes. There is a fundamental shift or mismatch between the industries hiring and the workers seeking jobs. 

Our own internal research has found that there is a massive reassessment by most employees on where and when they want to work and a bit on who they want to work with.

  • Personal choice. 
  • More time with family.
  • Flexible workplace.

… it’s a “you only live once” mentality … on steroids. Resignations are at their highest recorded levels up over 13 per cent from pre-pandemic levels. 

Employers are responding with technological solutions, operational changes, workforce upskilling and just doing more with less.

Factors to consider as you try to move to the great retention

  • 65 per cent of employee rate their managers as good or world-class.
  • 13 per cent considered them terrible or not-so-great.
  • Of those rating their manager as bad, 63 per cent are considering quitting in the next year. 
  • Only 27 per cent of those with a good manager said the same. 

After a tumultuous 12+ months, employees want certainty. 

  • They want clarity about how they’re allowed to work, what’s expected of them, and their immediate future. 
  • It takes a manager who’s confident in the organisation’s strategy, and can communicate it effectively, and honestly. Someone who can delegate and asks for feedback.
  • Employees who feel their organisation Is helping them adjust to change are also more likely to stay.

So, what can a responsible employer do?

Listening, engaging and feeling included are essential 

Everybody wants to be heard. More detailed timely communication has led employees to report they are five times more productive. People feel anxious when they don’t know or feel a lack of organisational communication. The obvious solution is for organisational leaders to listen, share more even when you are unsure about the future. 

Ease frustration and burnout through enablement

Most issues have known fixes. Employees just need an outlet to find and share tips and best practices. These messages must be targeted communications that enable peer to peer learning and that focuses on their needs. 

Show your workforce a clear path to growth

No one wants to stand still – especially millennials – so offer a clear path forward. Let employees self-select their learning paths and compete on the leaderboards. Most importantly, show how learning is connected to promotions or wage increases. Leverage learning during downtime to upskill employees, ensuring they’re capable and available when it counts.

Help ease the financial strain

Not every business is able to increase wages, but that’s not the only way to improve employee economic well-being. Wage timing is another powerful tool you can use to help ease your employees’ financial strain and help you become an employer of choice. Earned wage access options like ExpressPay allow employees to cash out a percentage of their accrued wages between paychecks. 

Create a shift-coverage culture by becoming flexible 

One of the most stated reasons for employees leaving is the lack of schedule flexibility. Our research shows that 61 per cent of frustrated employees cite scheduling as a reason for leaving. Enable employees to easily pick additional shifts, swap with eligible co-workers across their location or district.  All while keeping your WFM informed.

Bring them all together