Both Forbes and The Wall Street Journal have been talking employee retention lately … it is clearly a big deal, and big publications are taking notice.

Hire carefully

The WSJ says that it can cost “twice an employee’s salary to find and train a replacement,” so the best strategy is to hire the right person from the beginning. Ensure an employee meets your company’s culture in addition to the necessary skills profile. Interestingly, one item of consideration should be credit. “It may also spark a more engaged and authentic conversation about hurdles the candidate has overcome,” Forbes says.

Facilitate a positive work environment

Employees need to be comfortable at work both physically and emotionally, and often office aesthetics can be huge contributing factors to those comfort levels. Making sure that appliances and such work properly is a start, but stylistic authenticity and décor is important. If the workplace is comfortable and engaging to employees, they will want to come to work. Meaningful positive feedback from managers can also be a huge source of encouragement for employees, especially when unexpected. Even a simple email or brief conversation after a success, no matter how minor, can often be the difference between a mediocre or poor day and a good or great one.

Allow employees to grow

Forbes suggests that all employees be offered training opportunities to cultivate an atmosphere of growth and advancement. When employees feel they have an opportunity to grow in their position and in their company, an atmosphere of corporate continuity exists, and that continuity can drive productivity. To nurture that atmosphere, both Forbes and the WSJ preach the importance of conferences – both formal and informal – between managers and employees, helping set goals for their personal and professional growth. As important as setting those goals is, the meetings also afford managers an opportunity to listen to what their employees have to say … about anything, whether work-related or not.

“Recognize” the importance of retaining employees

Overall, recognition is the key to promoting a healthy workplace atmosphere. Forbes’ article concludes, “However you decide to reward your employees, praising employees for completing performance goals is one of the most effective ways to make them feel appropriate, which will make them want to stay with you for the long haul.” And retaining employees is valuable – WorkLife’s services alone have an average value to businesses of $121,203. You really can retain employees and increase productivity simultaneously!