Employee retention - what do employees really want?

What Employees Really Want: Data-Backed Insights From Hive’s State of Employee Retention Report

What Employees Really Want: Data-Backed Insights From Hive’s State of Employee Retention Report

Employee retention is a top priority for most companies, but what factors influence an employee’s decision to stay or leave? We surveyed 200 UK organisations to learn just that, so we can offer recommendations on how you can create a thriving place to work, and stay ahead of the competition to attract and retain top talent. 

Hive’s State of Employee Retention Report offers valuable insights into what employees really want. Let’s take a closer look at some of our key findings.

Positive relationships with line managers don’t guarantee employee retention

Great managers can provide great experiences, but they’re just one aspect of the job. They’re not enough to distract from other elements of an employee’s role that may not be as up to scratch as they’d like. 

Our research found that 68.57% of employees who had a positive relationship with their line manager still moved jobs in the past 12 months. While a good relationship with a manager is important, it’s not the only factor that influences an employee’s decision to stay or leave. Other factors that can affect an employees experience include:

  • Company culture
  • Career progression opportunities
  • Benefits and rewards
  • Salary
  • Sick policies

To understand what positive changes employees are looking for, companies can implement different channels of communication and feedback to give their employees a voice. Surveys, messenger tools and always-on listening tools are a great way to accompany regular 1-2-1’s with managers, and ensure that there are multiple options available for employees to feedback to managers and leaders in ways that they are comfortable with. These channels allow the unsaid things that bother employees to be said as they might not feel comfortable saying them to their managers.

Reward and recognition alone aren’t enough

Reward and recognition are extremely important parts of creating a culture that motivates one another, builds momentum and praises hard work and contribution. Tools like Hive Fives where peers and managers can recognise each other’s efforts are a great way to do this. But complimenting the tools with other factors that your employees need will amplify your culture even further. 

Through carrying out our research, we also found that of those who changed jobs in the last 12 months, 59.4% felt fairly rewarded in their previous role, and 58.8% felt well recognised. While these are important factors, they are not enough to keep employees motivated, engaged, and loyal to a company. To understand what motivates your people, surveying your employees is a great way to learn what drives them and what they value, ultimately helping you learn how to implement the best employee retention strategy for your organisation.

What employees want chart 2

This highlights the need for employers to include these factors into their people strategy and retention plans if they want to retain even those who seem happy at work. 

For those employees who are looking to move jobs in the next 12 months, the top three reasons why were:

What employees want chart

This data indicates the importance of offering competitive salaries, opportunities for employees to develop and further their career, and an attractive benefits package to retain their people, challenge them and keep them engaged in their role. 

Employee retention is more than just a slice of pizza

So, to conclude, companies need to understand that employee retention is not just about having a good relationship with a manager or offering rewards. Just having one area of focus is NOT going to cut it. It’s a mixture of different enablers of engagement and experience that will support your employee retention efforts. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. A great company culture is more than just pizza on a Friday. Although that is a great benefit, on its own, it’s not enough to keep employees motivated long term. 

Employee retention will take more than just pizza

There are many other factors that can affect an employee’s decision to stay or leave, and it’s important to survey employees and implement different channels of communication and feedback to understand what it is they value. By focusing on factors such as career progression, salary, and work-life balance, companies can improve their retention rates and build a more engaged and loyal workforce. 

And one final top tip: Although the research highlights general focus areas to support retention, the best way to retain your talent is to ask/survey employees and action off the back of their feedback – tailoring your approach to YOUR organisation. If you need support or have any further questions on how to get started with this, get in touch with our experts at Hive.

Download the full State of Employee Retention Report below to find more insights like these.

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