The grass is always greener on the other side.
That sentiment often leads employees to leave one job for another. They long for greener grass — and it’s not always the monetary kind.
“If an employee is planning to leave, more money will not keep them for very long,” says Don Tyler, personnel-management specialist with Tyler & Associates of Clarks Hill, Ind. “You can offer it, they may take it, but my experience is that they will still leave in a few months.”
Perks other than pay increases go a long way toward decreasing turnover in the workplace. Here are three easy ways to create an atmosphere where employees want to stay long-term.
1. Reward long-term service.
It’s common sense that people feel good when they get a pat on the back. Unfortunately, it’s not commonly practiced.
One way to change that is to recognize long-term employees. For instance, offer special perks for employees who reach five, 10 or 15 years of employment on your dairy. On those years — and those years only — give employees additional time off or reward them with an extra paycheck, Tyler says.
Another idea is to provide a cash incentive for each year employed, says Greg Smith, employee-retention consultant and CEO of Chart Your Course International of Conyers, Ga. Smith consulted for a small plumbing business that gave employees $200 for each year employed. To be eligible, employees must have achieved five years of employment.
Non-monetary rewards can be just as effective. Be creative. Rewards for long-term service can be something as basic as being more flexible during silage season.
“One company that I work with had several employees who had been with the company for 20-plus years,” Tyler says. The employees had received regular cost-of-living wage increases. They were now earning well above the going rate for their positions. The company simply could not afford to continue pay increases, so it capped salaries. “As we spoke with each of these employees, we found that their needs were basic,” Tyler recalls. “They really didn’t mind that their pay was capped,” he says. All they wanted in return were some basic benefits that fit their personal needs. For example, one employee wanted to take time off during silage harvest to attend a motorcycle rally in his hometown. Although it was against farm policy for anyone to take time off at harvest, the company granted his request.
Your actions do not go unnoticed by other employees. This, in turn, builds loyalty among those who have not yet achieved long-term status.