Talent Retention

Understanding Attrition

Data can help organizations get ahead of unwanted turnover.

By Debbie Bolla

“I think I talk about turnover metrics with our business leaders, HR leaders, and HR business partners the most out of anything,” shares Mike Salva, People Analytics and Reporting Manager for Pitney Bowes. And it’s no surprise considering recent research from Gartner shows that 91% of HR leaders are increasingly concerned about employee turnover. Having a handle on worker sentiment can make a huge difference in today’s oversaturated job market.

One effective approach to gaining a better understanding of worker sentiment is by conducting employee listening-based activities, says Salva. When doing employee surveys, he urges HR and TA leaders to be very mindful of the questions they ask, how often they ask them, and to take action on the feedback. Organizations need to gain employee buy-in and if the exercise is too long, too time-consuming or if no real results are produced, the initiative will fall short.

“You don’t have to boil the ocean,” says Salva. “At Pitney Bowes, we’ve done different sets of pulse surveys and interviews to understand new hire attrition.”

For example, a handful of production business sites were experiencing very high new hire attrition rates, while others were not. It was time to look at the data for answers. Salva said they analyzed many factors, including:

  • the recruitment process;
  • if new employees get a tour of the facility;
  • if candidates received a realistic job preview;
  • the onboarding process; and
  • if candidates are being supported in their main language.

“We got great insights as a result of asking good questions informed by one number,” says Salva. “Understanding the dynamics of your workforce, how your managers are working, and overall employee sentiment can help drive down attrition.”

Tags: Talent Retention

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