It's no secret that career advancement is a top priority for employees. 87% of millennials say that professional development and career growth are very important, according to Gallup. So what can your company do to prioritize career advancement and reduce staff turnover?
Invest in employees
When companies invest in their employees, everyone benefits. Employees feel appreciated and are therefore more likely to stay with the company over the long term, reducing turnover and saving on recruitment costs, while employers benefit from a stable staff. Happy employees are more productive and more invested in their work. When employees feel valued, they are more likely to take pride in their work and deliver a higher level of patient care.
So how can your company most effectively invest in its employees? By developing programs that support employee growth and career advancement. These may include:
Training and development
Talent mobility opportunities
In short, ensure every employee has access to career growth opportunities as a means to improving employee tenure and retention.
Training and development
Quality staff training can positively impact staff retention by giving employees the skills and knowledge needed to perform their jobs effectively, and the chance to develop professionally. This increases job satisfaction and motivation, which in turn can reduce turnover. Offering quality training programs signals to employees that you value their development and are invested in their success.
Offer tuition assistance
Employee training and development can be enhanced through tuition assistance programs. This can increase employee satisfaction and motivation, as well as their marketability and income potential. In addition, offering tuition assistance can signal to employees that you value their growth and are invested in their success, which may increase employee engagement and commitment to the organization. Employees who are offered the opportunity to further their education are less likely to leave the company.
Develop mentorship programs
A great way to invest in employees is by offering mentorship programs. This involves pairing a more experienced staff member with a newer employee, in order to help guide and teach the new hire employee the ropes. Mentorship can help employees feel more comfortable and supported at their job, and can show them clear examples of what can happen when they develop their skills.
Establish career pathways
One of the best ways to prioritize advancement in your organization is by setting up clear career progression pathways. That starts by outlining the entire advancement path from the employee’s starting position, and the steps each employee needs to go through, or skills each has to acquire, in order to be promoted.
A well-defined career pathway not only gives employees direction and clarity on their expected progress, but also provides a way for them to track their next steps and develop specific skills required for each role. It’s also important for employers to evaluate the developmental needs of their employees and identify any opportunity gaps. Proactive steps like professional coaching, mentoring programs, and education can assist with professional development.
By creating viable career pathways, employers can develop employee loyalty and help retain staff by recognizing their achievements and offering real opportunities for advancement.
Identify talent mobility opportunities
Companies can better retain talent by creating programs that help employees grow and advance. By actively providing opportunities to advance their careers, you are sending the message that you prioritize employee success.
This is important, because it helps employees feel valued and invested in the company's success. When employees feel more connected to their work and see a clear path for their future with the company, they are less likely to leave, reducing the harmful effects of turnover. By administering a 4-minute survey, Arena Analytics can help match your existing employees to your open roles where they are predicted to stay.
Employees get to identify their next role. As the employer, you benefit by growing candidates from within––employees who are already familiar with your culture and the ways things are done. By investing in your team and providing opportunities to advance their careers, you are sending the message that you prioritize their success.
Measure Impact on Retention
Companies can measure the success of career advancement efforts and their impact on employee tenure by tracking metrics related to turnover, tenure, and retention. An organization wide view of turnover may be what you’re accustomed to measuring today, but we advise going deeper. In addition to measuring turnover across the entire employee base, consider drilling down into turnover:
An employee who leaves after 30 days is far different to one who retires after six years with your hospital. Breaking down turnover into specific milestones gives you a better view of your new hire retention, and any specific milestones experiencing particular pain points.
Are staff leaving in droves after just 30 days? That’s concerning and should prompt you to ask yourself what’s so off putting about the first impressions people are getting of your organization, of their jobs, of their manager, and of their teammates. Are you seeing another wave of departures at the six-month mark? This activity should also set off alarm bells because it means you’re losing teammates after you’ve completed your investment in their training and onboarding, which is a costly, time consuming, and frustrating outcome.
Do you know your systemwide hiring and retention rates as well as you know how it breaks down at each of your facilities? Having a view into each medical center, hospital, or other healthcare facility’s data is critical. Tracking the same metrics the same way at each facility makes that data actionable. Request a complimentary Workforce Analysis to have Arena Analytics give you the birds eye view into your healthcare system that you’ve been missing.
By job category
Nurse turnover is costly (up to $51,700 per RN, according to NSI Nursing Solutions) and newsworthy (nurse strikes always make headlines), but did you know that nurse turnover is highly correlated to turnover in supporting job categories? If you’re worried about nurse turnover, do you know it’s correlation to the turnover among health technicians and care assistants? Dissecting turnover rates by job categories is a must if you want to stem the flow of avoidable departures among nurses.
When it comes to employee retention, career advancement is key. Employees want to feel like they're valued and their hard work is being acknowledged. When they feel like they're stagnating or not being given the opportunity to grow, they're more likely to leave.
It is critical that employers invest in their employees to encourage growth and career advancement as a tool to improve retention overall. To create the biggest impact on retention and management pipeline development, it’s important to make programs accessible to all staff, not just the higher-ups. Giving even the most junior employees the opportunity to grow and develop their skills will help to create a more cohesive and productive team that delivers strong business results for you in the long term.