‘’The Great Resignation’’ represents a sea-change in modern workforce management. HR leaders are having to find novel ways of stemming this tide of workers exiting their enterprises, and HR analytics are the secret weapon that can turn resignation into retention.
The factors driving ‘’The Great Resignation’’ – such as the demand for more remote work, the prioritisation of mental health support, and the tighter connection of labour to corporate purpose – are representative of immovable long term changes to worker expectations.
HR leaders need to figure out how best to pivot their enterprise to offer what employers are lacking, and stem the tide of employee turnover. As the UK is currently in the midst of a candidate shortage in critical industries, retention strategies should be prioritised to make sure business provision remains consistent, and HR teams aren’t trying to rapidly fill talent voids in one of the toughest recruitment markets in a generation.
This is where big data, and HR analytics, can play an outsized role. The data gleaned from HR processes – from interview and sourcing, right through to exit interviews and referral programmes – provides actionable intel for business leaders to flip ‘’The Great Resignation’’ script and improve retention rates.
The Pandemic and Our New Working Normal
Up until the eve of the pandemic, staff turnover was a naturally occurring, relatively slow-moving and fairly undramatic process that HR teams could (to a degree) predict. Certain times of the year typically saw higher than normal turnover, and HR leaders could put plans in place to mitigate employee exits through fixed, legacy retention cultures: the annual review, the Christmas party, the annual bonus, and so on.
In the mid and post-pandemic world, those systems of legacy HR management have been consigned to the dustbin of history as millions of workers upped and left their jobs in search of new opportunities.
In the UK, the numbers were, and continue to be, stark:
● “LFS shows that 1.02 million people moved to a job from another between July and September 2021”.
● (There were) “1.2 million job vacancies in the three months to November 2021, more than half of businesses who reported a worker shortage stated they were unable to meet demands”.
● In 2022, “Redundancies in the UK are at their lowest level since the mid-1990s, while the level of open vacancies is the highest on record”.
And the future looks equally as fragile as “almost a third (29%) of UK workers are considering moving to a new job this year”.
HR teams have had to learn a hard COVID-specific lesson, and as many reports and studies have shown, workers want more from their workplace than just a paycheque.
● They want to align with company purpose,
● They want to understand and be part of ESG programmes,
● They want more personalised L&D and career development pathways,
● They want remote or hybrid work agreements as standard,
● They want to work for more ethical employers who value mental health,
● They want working cultures that don’t clash with their ethics,
● And above all they want their time to mean something.
So how can HR teams bolster their retention strategies against such a formidable turnover foe? The answer lies in data, and how HR teams can leverage data and analysis to improve retention outcomes.
HR Analytics and Data as the Foundation of Cultural Change
If employers have learned anything over the last year, it’s that employees want to be heard, to be seen, to be protected and to be valued. Below are some of the ways that you can use analytics and data to improve your company culture.
• With improved KPI measurements, derived from real-time data, managers can show their staff just how well they are performing, and just how much value they hold within the workplace.
• Cumulative datasets from within workforces such as performance management feedback, that is captured ‘in the moment’, as well as more structured feedback can pull up deficiencies or gaps in certain workers’ skill sets – providing context for career improvement and direct points of reference for skill development.
• Data gathered from exit interviews can help illuminate the reasons why staff seek employment elsewhere, and the information gathered becomes fuel for exit intervention.
• Examining employee survey results can provide better insight into the sentiment of employees, proving invaluable in determining whether major changes are needed to address retention issues or improve morale. Things to look for include responses to questions about manager support, career progression opportunities, and engagement among different teams within the company. When taken together, this data can draw a clear picture of what areas need improvement in order for employees to feel valued and motivated.
Using HR Analytics as Your Crystal Ball
When it comes to managing employee data, combining information about employees’ performance, demographics, and behaviour patterns into a single centralised HR platform is the ultimate key to predicting employee resignation trends.
This information can then be used to develop targeted retention strategies. For example, if the data shows that employees tend to resign in the months leading up to Spring, interventions can be put in place in the months leading up to Spring to reduce turnover. Similarly, if the analysis reports that the majority of resignations occur in a particular region, retention efforts can be targeted on that area.
An effective workforce management software can also provide valuable data to assess employee productivity and engagement. From employee attendance to performance and productivity, there is no shortage in data to predict employee engagement and productivity levels.
Get The Most out of Your HR data
HR data analytics, thereby becomes the foundation of retention strategies. If you’re looking to get the most out of your HR data, it’s important to have a platform that integrates all of your different HR data sources. This will give you more of a holistic view of your workforce to identify patterns, trends, and issues before they become serious problems. It also allows you to track the impact of different HR initiatives, and see how they are affecting employee engagement and retention.
Contact us today to discuss how we can take your HR data analytics to the next level!