Pay Structure, Inclusivity, Appreciation, Flexibility

It has been called the Great Resignation. It is a movement that started in the spring of 2021 to the present where employees voluntarily leave their jobs “for a better/more well-balanced life” so to speak. The new trend? #QuitTok. Employees use Tik Tok to publicly resign from their jobs. While on an individual level it could be a good decision, for employers, it has been a nightmare. According to a report from the Peterson Institute for International Economics, the U.S. economy is still short over 4 million jobs as of January 2022.

Headlines across the United States continue to highlight the shortage of labor and the consequences of forced shutdowns. Some of our clients have felt this same pressure and asked for guidance from NAPCO.  We’re listening.

Here are a few ideas to attract and keep hard-working, loyal employees:

1. Pay structure. Minimum wage can be hard to swallow for some employees, especially when you are asking them to work with chemicals. One way some of our clients work is to pay employees on a commission basis. For each job completed, the employee gets 10% commission from the total project cost. This pay structure can be a game changer because it motivates employees to take on more jobs and also do it right the first time. If they have to go back a second time, they receive no more pay for his/her time. This incentivizes them to do the best they can the first time around.

2. Company culture. As we’ve seen over the last year and a half, we need to be better prepared for the unknown. If you have a company culture where everyone feels valued, then you will be less likely to “lose” employees during times of uncertainty. Here are a few ideas to consider when building your company culture:

a. Part of the Bigger Picture. When employees know who and what the company stands for, it is easier to be a part of it. You can do something as simple as a vision and mission statement, and then educate employees on what those statements mean and what you want your company to be remembered by. By being inclusive, employees feel like they are part of the bigger picture and understand how their work helps support it. They feel more like a family.

b. Appreciation. Everyone wants to feel valued. If you are a company that can make that happen, then you will have less challenges retaining employees. Here are a few ideas for showing appreciation to employees on an individually level or as a group. Give a shout out for an employee of the month via email and a $25 gift card. Ask managers to write an email to their teams once a month congratulating them on a job well done. For groups, getting together once a quarter outside of the work environment can be highly beneficial. Some ideas include: a holiday party, employee BBQ or team lunch, escape room, early dismissal to go play a round of mini putt. Be creative. It doesn’t have to be expensive; it just needs to show authentic gratitude to your employees.

c. Flexibility.  Figure out where you can give employees more flexibility, while still maintaining clear expectations of when and how they should be available.  During the interview process, find out what is most important to them, maybe it is being home by 5p.m. to eat with family or having a day off mid-week. Whatever it is, try to build boundaries for what you need to do to run a business while still giving employees a little flexibility.