How do you handle high turnover?
3 minutes | Posted 01 October, 2019

Recent research reveals the average annual turnover in Australian retail is 41%, compared to a 16% national average for all industries. This puts retail in the top five industries for highest employee turnover rates. 

Some organisations idealise low turnover rates, believing it is a sign they are hiring good people, paying people well, fostering engagement and creating a positive work environment. But despite this, low turnover isn’t always preferable! It can indicate your employees are poorly selected and trained, overpaid, and complacent. In some cases, high turnover may actually be a good thing.

Some companies are such great places to work that employees feel ready to move on, and indeed do so. 

Some leaders believe that high turnover is an indicator that things in the organisation are going badly, and replacing and training new hires is expensive. But what if you used high turnover to understand areas in your organisation that need attention, the changes that need to be made and how to streamline your processes. You can also use it as an opportunity to inject new talent and skills into your existing teams.

Here are some strategies to make the most of high turnover.

Use exit interviews to your advantage

If exit interviews are handled correctly, your departing employees will feel free to highlight the positives and negatives of working at your organisation. Based on their feedback, you can improve workplace internal dynamics and practices. Exit interviews thus become a chance for both you and your employees to be honest. 

Beware: do your exit interviews reveal any patterns? Make sure there are no toxic types buried in your existing teams that are causing your attrition rate.

Harness the value of fresh talent

Not every hire will be perfect. Sometimes people are lacking in certain skills or cultural fit. Perhaps they stop enjoying their roles and become complacent. Thier departure represents an opportunity for you to bring new talent in and take advantage of fresh skills and perspectives.

Review and implement effective performance management. 

High turnover may indicate you are not making the most of your performance management processes. Use this as motivation to review your current process, and implement an effective performance management strategy.

Your performance management strategy should include:

  • performance goal-setting — encouraging individuals to set their own goals;
  • establishing agreed timelines and expected outcomes;
  • day-to-day feedback amongst team members and managers;
  • structured induction;
  • targeted skills training;
  • ongoing professional development;
  • coaching; and
  • periodic career conversations.

You need to do more than attract great talent. You should ensure they feel engaged and challenges, and are given opportunities to develop. 

A two-way culture of giving and receiving feedback must be encouraged so your team members feel confident to give their managers feedback and be heard.

Use turnover as motivation to stay competitive

Feel secure in the knowledge that headhunting and poaching occurs regularly and letting people go is a natural recurrence too. When people stop performing or start to display a lack of motivation and engagement, a candid, but caring, talk may assist them in finding another career pathway that suits their interests, skills and abilities.

Whether you are trying to meet your sales numbers for the new quarter or you are implementing an expansion strategy for next year, the right team members make all the difference in your success. 

In a business sector known for high turnover and staffing difficulties, optimising your hiring, onboarding, talent pooling and learning processes can make all the difference!

Creating the right culture and choosing the right people is paramount in any business. At Scout Talent we support you with our recruitment software and candidate management system to optimise talent attraction and enable you to hire of the best possible candidates.

Scout Talent offers solutions that are currently used by many HR and recruitment teams in retail to optimise hiring, onboarding, talent pooling and learning processes. 

Are you interested in a no-obligation web demonstration with one of our experienced specialists? If so, simply request a demo here or contact us on 07 3330 2595.