How to Boost Efficiency During the Great Resignation

It’s Possible to Maintain Output Levels During the Big Quit. Here’s How:

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By Nicole Schreiber-Shearer, Content Marketing Specialist @ Gloat

January 11, 2022

Surging turnover rates are much more than an HR problem. An uptick in resignations inevitably creates a dangerous domino effect that spreads throughout your business. When workers leave, the on-the-job training and organizational knowledge they’ve accumulated leaves with them. Between the lost productivity and future recruiting expenses, you’re looking at an overall cost of replacement that is 84% of your employee’s salary. And you don’t just have vacancies to fill; you’ll also have knowledge gaps that threaten to slow efficiency levels to a halt.

Today, most leaders don’t need to be walked through the devastating impact of subpar retention rates, because they’re seeing it for themselves. Months after professor Anthony Klotz first predicted a “Great Resignation” in which employees would leave their jobs en masse, churn rates continue to hit record-breaking levels. In total, more than 38 million people have resigned in 2021.

As a result, companies are struggling to maintain output levels. And small-to-medium-sized enterprises that are growing quickly may be particularly vulnerable since they might not have another employee with similar skills who can pick up the slack when their colleague resigns. Fortunately, with the right tools and a strategic approach, subpar productivity doesn’t have to be your organization’s fate. But what does it really take to upgrade efficiency during the Great Resignation?

Let Your People Take Charge of Their Careers

An engaged workforce is more than a win for your people; it’s a sure-fire way to improve your bottom line. Gallup finds that engaged workforces enjoy 21% greater profitability and a 17% boost in productivity.

But when employees are leaving in droves, how can you possibly keep your people motivated? Instead of relying on perks and benefits to improve engagement, leaders need to understand what employees really care about.

Right now, our research shows that 3 in 10 workers aren’t on their desired career paths. That means approximately one-third of the workforce isn’t excited about their future with their company, and as result, they’re likely to become disengaged and unproductive. In contrast, when employees are put at the helm of their own professional development, leaders can expect both engagement and output levels to climb.

Give Everyone Ample Opportunity to Upskill

In the new world of work, skills are the fuel you need to innovate, evolve, and unlock agility. So it’s no surprise that knowledge gaps come with a steep cost, especially when it comes to efficiency. 70% of professionals say skill gaps are already impeding productivity at work.

Skill-building shouldn’t be reserved for new hires or junior-level employees. If you want to enhance efficiency, everyone needs access to learning and development opportunities, including employees who already have advanced training.

At the moment, our research shows that nearly three-quarters of these highly skilled workers believe there are better opportunities outside of their organization. To prevent knowledge gaps from slowing productivity to a halt, employees need access to opportunities that will enable them to keep learning and growing, even once they’ve developed advanced competencies.

Put Internal Mobility Above External Recruiting

If your answer to the Great Resignation is doubling down on your external recruitment efforts, it might be time to rethink your strategy, especially if you’re looking to improve efficiency, accelerate your speed-to-market, and cut costs. Unlike external candidates, your employees already know how your business works, so they can get up to speed faster than new hires who need a few weeks to onboard.

Despite these productivity advantages, many employers continue to overlook the powerful role that internal mobility can play in filling talent needs during the Great Resignation. And as a result, our survey shows that about two-thirds of employees think there are better opportunities outside of their company.

It’s time to turn that belief upside down because, as our VP of Insights and Impact, Jeff Schwartz, explains, “In a free-agent world, we have a requirement as business and HR leaders to put in place platforms and programs that help people choose our company every day.”

Take Advantage of Talent Marketplaces

The Great Resignation is also a call to action. To hold on to top talent and avoid the productivity drops that turnover inevitably causes, leaders must democratize access to opportunity and put employees in the driver’s seat of their careers.

It’s going to take more than minor tweaks to make these changes. The only way to recalibrate operating models is by leveraging disruptive technology that breaks down barriers and uncovers talent that may have once been overlooked. Talent marketplaces have emerged as crucial platforms that can level the playing field by matching employees to internal opportunities that align with their skills, experiences, and ambitions.

While the technology is still emerging, employees already recognize the valuable role that the platforms can play in increasing talent visibility, and in turn, productivity. Our survey shows that 70% of respondents believe talent marketplaces can help democratize careers.

The Great Resignation serves as a powerful reminder of what’s at the heart of every business success: people. No organization can afford to lose top talent. And the good news here is that, with the right strategy, yours won’t have to. For more insights about today’s turnover crisis and the steps you can take to empower your employees to achieve their full potential, download our Great Resignation Research Report.

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