Retain or retrain – what are the costs?

Are we getting better at building brands that are known as ‘employers of choice’?

Louise Rooney
By Louise Rooney
  • 6 June 2018
  • Reading time: 5 minutes
Is your brand seen as an employer of choice?

With the financial crash of 2008 coming up for its 10-year anniversary (perhaps not a milestone worth breaking out the bubbly for) it seems that people nowadays are becoming less risk averse when it comes to their careers. In fact, with all that doom and gloom firmly behind us, we’re now more likely to throw caution to the wind and make the leap to a new career altogether. Exciting times for your desk buddy who’s finally following his dreams to become an artisan chocolatier (note; definitely someone to keep in touch with if this is actually the case…) but not such great news for employers whose success relies on the loyalty of their staff.

Prior to this post-2008 you-only-live-once attitude, the idea of loyalty to one company was one that was already becoming a bit frayed around the edges. If people have become more and more willing to abandon entire industries that they’ve dedicated years to, surely changing companies within that industry is an even less drastic (and therefore more likely) outcome? Don’t get us wrong, the world needs artisan chocolates and people willing to take risks – but it also needs dependable business models that offer something back in return for employee longevity. We believe it’s down to the businesses to show both current and prospective employees just why it’s worth sticking around.

With recent figures showing that unemployment is at its lowest point since 1975, the tides may well be turning. Could this be because we’re getting better at building brands that are known as ‘employers of choice’? When you tell people where you work, do they tremble with jealousy or just give a sympathetic look? If it’s the former, you’ll know if you work for one of these much sought-after employers of choice.

On average, it costs employers £30,000 to replace an employee and ACAS further says it’s taking an average of 28 weeks to onboard and train new people. So while the only constant is change, it’s worth Boards and senior managers giving serious thought to their employee turnover rate if they’re concerned about profitability.

It’s not an easy transformation to make but businesses who find that they’re struggling to attract the people they need, or keep the ones they’ve got, have to take action and invest in building a brand that catches the eye amongst other job listings. Sometimes it’s a matter of spending a little more on making a bigger noise about what’s already available. Sometimes it’s a complete overhaul (see our previous blog on rebranding here!).

Author and brand expert Jody Ordioni shares her compelling call to arms for companies to become employers of choice in this essential article. Of course, no two companies will share the same solution but whether it’s an unforgettable new onboarding pack for your new hires, comfortable new uniforms or even sleek branded moleskins to give out in appreciation… we’re here to discuss and share our own ideas to help you do right by the people who matter (or help have them queuing up for a chance to work with you!).

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