12 easy strategies to help you improve your junior employee retention
Businesses big and small have to think about their junior employee retention strategies. After all, what’s the point in hiring the top talent when they leave after a few months?
8 in 10 employees would seek a new job after just 1 bad day (Addison Group). So your strategy needs to be strong enough to convince them not to.
But typical junior employee retention strategies can tend to break the bank. Every other article mentions some amazing way that Google or Netflix treats their employees, but for small business owners these high cost strategies don’t really cut it.
So here are 12 easy, budget-friendly junior employee retention strategies.
1 – Hire the right person
When you get your hiring right, retention is a lot easier.
We always recommend sticking with a good hiring process and trusting your head over your gut. A solid task and two-stage interview process should set you up for success.
And be sure to ask your applicants questions about their future. If they will admit that they see their future in an entirely different role, I would consider that a red flag.
2 – Keep your offer competitive
It’s a good idea to keep an eye on what your competitors are offering their employees. If their benefits or salary offerings always trump yours, you might be in trouble.
When it comes to salary things can get complicated. If you’re dealing with junior employees we recommend offering Real Living Wage as a bare minimum.
A small raise can make a big difference. It shows that you care about your juniors, appreciate their work and their time. It could also deter them from seeking new opportunities if their salary grows with their experience.
3 – Review your benefits
And now on to the benefits side of things. If your list of benefits needs some love, I would really recommend asking your employees to pitch their ideas.
There are plenty of budget-friendly benefits to choose from, so don’t be beaten out by a new company with a flashy insurance plan!
4 – Take your onboarding seriously
Good onboarding works. Studies have shown that great onboarding programmes can improve employee retention by 82%.
When you onboard your employees well, they have a greater understanding of their role within the company. Things are less overwhelming and confusing from day-one.
Bad onboarding leaves new hires unsure of where they fit in the team.
We’ve created an Onboarding Checklist to help you streamline your process and set your employees up for long-term success.
5 – Provide structure
When juniors walk into their first roles fresh out of university, it can be hard to gain confidence. Providing a sense of structure in their role can help them in the very early days.
This is all part of onboarding, but it’s really powerful.
Structure helps your new hires feel well looked after in this transition time and gives them the courage to flourish.
6 – Make working flexible
A massive 89% of companies report better retention after offering flexible work options. Are you taking advantage of the flexible work trend?
Flexible working options allow your employees to fit work around their lives – not the other way around. This means that they do the same amount of work but operate at different times.
This lets them look after their children or take classes while also giving night-owls the chance to work at their most productive hours.
It’s a really competitive benefit that can completely change how your employees work.
7 – Manage your management
Have you ever been at a job and absolutely hated your manager? We’ve all been there and know that it can really change how you feel about your job.
So be sure to check in on your management and be open to the idea that they could be at fault. A bad manager can make someone absolutely dread clocking in every day and that isn’t good for retention.
8 – Let it grow
No one wants to be stuck in a dead-end job. And when you do the same tasks day-in, day-out it can be hard to feel a sense of accomplishment. This can lead to feelings of frustration, futility and apathy.
But when your employees constantly tackle new challenges and take on new responsibilities, they hopefully won’t feel that way.
So let your employees’ responsibilities grow!
9 – Training and development
To help your employees keep up with their growing responsibilities, it’s essential that you offer training and personal development opportunities.
Training is a powerful way to support your employees in the roles, careers and personal lives. And learning something new will help your employees feel a sense of accomplishment, progression and pride. So it’s a win-win!
It’s also good to keep in mind that training and development is much more about what you can learn than how much you can learn at the beginning!
10 – Promote your juniors
Speaking of dead-end jobs, remember to give your junior employees promotions!
Lots of young people leave their first roles to climb higher and further their careers.
Having conversations about where your junior employees can go within the company makes a big difference. It keeps goals attainable and in-sight.
This is because it can be hard to go from the constant progression of university to a steady full-time job, but a promotion might help any of your juniors that feel stagnant after university.
11 – Say thank you
Appreciation can go a long way towards retention. When your employees feel valued within your organisation, they’re going to be more inclined to work harder and stay with you.
So say thank you! Drop your team members a message, open your meeting with a thank you, organise a social event to show your appreciation or even send personalised cards to your colleagues.
12 – Gain feedback
And make sure to constantly re-evaluate your employee retention strategies. Ask your team for feedback on your onboarding, probation and appraisal processes.
See every opportunity as a chance to improve your processes. From hiring to offboarding, your almost-employees and ex-employees should have something to say about the way you do things.
If you ever need help finding amazing juniors to hire into your teams for the long-term, be sure to sign up and try DigitalGrads. We even offer a free 12-month replacement scheme if your retention plans don’t work out right the first time!