One of the biggest costs for a business can be the recruitment and training of staff. At CBS we’ve been extremely successful in retaining our people – but across the country it’s estimated that three quarters of the working population moves jobs at least once every five years.
One of the reasons we’ve succeeded in retaining staff is through keeping them challenged and motivated. One way we have achieved this is through our community engagement programme. This provides opportunities for our team to shift a gear, taking them out of their normal environments – and potentially out of their comfort zones. For example, we work with local organisation, Connect Reading, to relocate unwanted business furniture and fit out offices for charities. This gives staff a chance to practice their project management and space planning skills, as well as meeting a real need. It also allows staff to bond and have fun outside the office environment. Charity work can literally be life changing, while increased confidence makes people better ambassadors for the business.
What about the company’s needs?
While loyalty and support is a two way street – and employees have to recognise they also need to be flexible – it is important to ask staff what they feel they need to do their job. At CBS we’ve always tried to support our staff in developing their role and increasing their personal skills. Sometimes this means moving staff between different roles until the right fit is achieved for both parties.
Also important is addressing the skills gap. In recognition of this, we’ve recently signed up to the Government’s Skills Pledge Programme, which aims to encourage organisations to invest in raising the skills of their workforce. As well as supporting employees to strengthen basic literacy, numeracy and technical skills, it can also mean helping them to work towards further qualifications.
What do you do to encourage employees to stay put? Have you any unusual ways of helping staff and company to bond or build teams? Let us know what you do.