The time an employee spends in a company can be seen as an arc. We’ve all heard stories of individuals staying their entire life working under the same banner, while others abruptly quit after a few months. There’s a multitude of factors that influence the employee retention rate of a company. In this article, we share the most common reasons why employees leave their jobs.
Why is it important to know the reasons employees leave?
Knowing the reasons why employees resign or leave a job is important since what has pushed an employee to look elsewhere can lead other good employees to leave. By facing their blind spots, companies can improve their work environment and develop strategies to reduce employee turnover.
As this model illustrates, the blind spot of a business is often sensed by many employees and is tacitly accepted as part of the working environment. The lack of flexible hours, a bad manager, the lack of recognition or benefits are common blind spots.
10 common reasons why employees leave their job
Here are the 10 most common reasons why employees leave their job:
- Poor relationship with co-workers
- Inconsistency between salary and workload
- Bad manager
- Uninspiring work environment
- Poor communication
- Strict work policies
- Unclear mission
- Lack of recognition
- Inexistant corporate culture
1. Poor relationship with co-workers
Spending 8 hours a day with people who can barely stand each other can become psychological torture for anyone. An important lack of rapport and camaraderie can erode the morale of workers and make them look for a new job.
2. Inconsistency between salary and workload
On paper, the contract that you proposed to your worker may seem advantageous. However, the salary may not be adapted to the role they actually fulfill in practice. When signing up for a regular nine-to-five job, it is not normal to find yourself drinking coffee at 20h30 and wondering what you’ll be eating once you get home. If employees go beyond their mandate to accomplish their task in due time, a pay raise must be considered to prevent lack of recognition, and retain the best talents.
3. Bad manager
Bad managers are a societal archetype just as famous as the unscrupulous mother-in-law. It is very common for a manager to have great technical talent in their area but have little ability to deal with the demands of their team and the nuances of management. As a result, it is one of the most common reasons for employee dissatisfaction and job resignation.
Companies often assume that their managerial staff has already proven themselves and that they are beyond reproach. This double standard can lead to a high employee turnover rate without anyone scratching their head.
4. Uninspiring work environment
A work environment that is always the same, with repetitive tasks and outdated processes will leave employees feeling bored and unstimulated. It’s important to keep up with the times and offer employees incentives via a benefits package, for example. Businesses should also strive to improve their work environment and organize team-building events to improve employee morale.
5. Poor communication
If managers aren’t in the habit of giving constructive feedback regularly or discussing career goals with employees at least once a year, your company is probably at risk of losing touch with its employees. Annual performance reviews are recommended, but the more frequent the reviews, the better. It’s important to encourage open communication so that employees feel comfortable talking about their career goals and worries.
6. Strict work policies
Flexible hours and remote work have become more common. It is not hard to believe that this new form of work is generally preferred by workers. There’s an increasing number of companies that have recognized this and are adapting their business model to adapt to this new reality. Employers who want to improve their employee retention rate have to keep employee needs in mind and rethink their work policies.
7. Unclear mission
Having a strong set of corporate values, a mission statement, vision and specific objectives (for the company, departments, teams, and individuals) can help employees see how their contributions are part of a greater whole.
Boredom is the silent extinguisher of ambition and a very common reason for job resignations. Employees want to be challenged and prove themselves in their field of expertise, rather than catch as many breaks as possible while still cashing in their full salary. Asking employees if they would like more responsibilities is a great way to kindle their interest and recognize their work.
9. Lack of recognition
Most people don’t feel valued enough in their jobs. It’s a very human feeling that cannot be ignored and that can be remedied by words of encouragement. Lack of recognition by peers and management does not entail that a worker feels cheated regarding his salary, more often than not, it is purely socio-emotional.
10. Inexistant corporate culture
A weak organizational culture discourages employees, affects their performance and decreases their work productivity. In short, it costs you money. When the corporate mission and vision are not well defined, employees perceive it. The same is true if these fundamentals are constantly changing.
Why do employees stay at their jobs?
Here are the top reasons why employees stay at their jobs:
- Remuneration and benefits
- Reputation of the company
- Profile of the direct manager
Remuneration and benefits
In addition to the fixed and/or variable remuneration established in the contract, a benefits package is something that attracts the attention of employees and retains the best talent. Health plans, private pensions, life insurance, and gym vouchers are good employee retention factors. Some employers even cover veterinarian expenses to attract animal-loving workers!
What all employees want deep down is to be treated with respect. Things like broken promises or even internal disappointment while waiting for a promotion can result in lack of employee engagement.
Reputation of the company
People should be proud of the company they work for. To ensure that this happens, businesses must conduct internal and external research to improve their reputation and employee satisfaction. When employees strongly identify with the corporate culture of their work environment, they will want to stay working there for a long time.
Profile of the direct manager
If the manager is not someone who inspires trust, employees will want to go to another company sooner or later. A good manager must have direct, friendly, and clear conversations with employees to know how to get the best out of them and help them achieve their goals.
How to retain your best employees
Working with a recruiting agency is a great way to find the best talents and improve your employee retention rate. Hiring is a complex process which requires reviewing applications, scheduling interviews, performing pre-employment background checks and tests and determining if a candidate is a good culture fit.