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Is Your Company Suffering from Attrition? Here’s What to Do

February 27th, 2014

Losing employees can have a big impact on your company whether people are retiring, relocating or just moving on to greener pastures. Filling the open position or finding a way to handle workload without replacing the employee can consume time and money resources. Here are some questions to ask yourself to address employee turnover.

Are your retention expectations realistic?

It’s possible that your attrition rates may be within normal levels. It’s rare these days for an employee to sign on with an employer right out of college and stay through retirement. Workers in the United States typically remain in jobs just over five years. If you are losing many employees much earlier than that, you may want to look for a cause.  But what you consider attrition may just be the typical comings and goings of mid-career professionals.

How can you control attrition?

Find out why it’s happening. You can’t keep everyone happy all of the time, but if you are witnessing a large number of departures you need to find out why. Are your compensation rates competitive? Do you foster a positive company culture?

If employees are leaving soon after they are hired, take a look at your screening and onboarding processes. Do new employees have realistic expectations of what the job entails?  Conduct exit interviews with departing employees. They may not be completely frank, but you can look for patterns among people who leave.

Employees who feel valued are less likely to leave their current job. Ask employees for feedback on what is working and what is not. Give your team feedback and offer perks designed to keep star employees on board.

Is there an upside to attrition?

Take advantage of unplanned staff losses to lower headcount without layoffs. Fill open positions with temporary or contract employees who can complete projects without adding to your permanent headcount.  Or try contract-to-hire workers in high turnover positions. You’ll have the opportunity to assess people on the job to be sure they fit well into your environment before committing to a permanent hire.

As leading recruiters in Kansas City, Morgan Hunter knows how to make the best of employee attrition to help employers build lean, efficient, cost-effective teams. If you need additional help sourcing top candidates for your company, call Morgan Hunter. Contact us today if you’re ready to learn more!

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“Average” Employees: How Much Are They Costing You?

February 11th, 2014

As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, Morgan Hunter knows great companies are not built on average employees. And yet, there are certainly times when a candidate looks promising on paper only to fall far short once on the job. They’re not poor performers, exactly; they’re just “average,” doing enough to get by, nothing more or less.

You’re not impressed. And you’re also not alone.

No one hires a mediocre employee on purpose. But it’s a situation that must be dealt with as quickly as possible because – just as is true with a bad hire – a run-of-the-mill employee can also have a negative impact on morale, culture, and productivity, among other things.

To help you gain a true sense of what those “mediocre” performers are costing your company, here’s a breakdown of the factors involved:

They Take Up More Time 

Mediocre employees take a lot more time to manage than strong performers. They need more direction and attention in order to meet goals and expectations. This has a ripple affect on the rest of your team because you can’t spend as much time managing and developing your star performers and other solid employees.

They Cost You in Training 

Average performers not only need more time, they also need more training because they are lacking certain skills and competencies to get their jobs done to your expectations. Likewise, they are typically less productive during training programs, which can negate your ROI in them.

They Make More Mistakes

Your customers don’t know who your mediocre performers are. If they have bad service or a mistake is made that adversely impacts them, they’re not going to differentiate between team members. And unfortunately, average employees do tend to make more mistakes, lose more sales, and have a net negative impact on service and standards as a whole – truly bringing down the whole team.

Other Employees Grow Resentful

When other team members have to pick up the slack for average performers, they are going to grow frustrated. What’s worse is that if you don’t do anything to deal with the situation, they will soon become disengaged as well, impacting employee satisfaction, loyalty and eventually retention.

It Helps Your Competitors

When you have mediocre employees on staff, they’re likely not the ones generating innovative ideas and solutions that will sharpen your competitive edge. In fact, they may even distract from your vision, boosting your competition’s efforts to win more market share in the process.

With all that said, average performers still end up costing you the same in salary, benefits and other employment expenses as superior employees. So while it can be a challenge to deal with them, finding a way to do so – and filling those positions with top talent – is essential for your organization’s success.

Need more help finding star performers to add to your team? Call Morgan Hunter. As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, we’ve helped companies throughout the area secure their most valuable asset – top employees. And we can help you too!

Contact us today if you’re ready to find out more.

 

5 Ways to Increase Employee Retention

January 14th, 2014

As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, Morgan Hunter knows when it comes to employee retention, things aren’t looking good for U.S. employers. In fact, according to a 2013 Bureau of Labor Statistics survey, the average tenure of an employee is now only 1.5 years.

What’s worse is that it usually takes a good six months for a new hire to learn the ropes and get up and running. So you essentially get 1 productive year out of a new hire.

If this sounds all too familiar, then it’s time to invest more effort and resources into engaging and retaining top talent. Here’s how:

1. Focus on strong employee/manager relationships.

One of the biggest reasons employees leave is due to a bad relationship with their boss. Many times, though, people are promoted into management positions without ever being trained on how to manage their people. As a result, they don’t really know how to motivate different personalities, diffuse challenging situations, or handle an underperforming employee.

For instance, an employee may not be clear about expectations and not given the support and resources necessary to succeed. Yet their manager simply views them as underperforming. There’s clearly a communication gap – one that needs to be bridged by training managers on how to manage people.

2. Be a champion for your employees.

If you see an employee you know is highly talented, then don’t let them waste those talents – maximize them! It’s better for your company to develop your best people – even if it means they might eventually leave – than to waste their abilities.

When you enable an employee to achieve their potential, you will not only advance their careers, but also improve retention in the process. On the other hand, if a top employee feels like they’re in a dead end position, they will leave the company eventually out of frustration.

3. Follow through on your promises.

Another reason an employee will leave is because they feel like their employer is not keeping promises. For instance, during the interview process, if you touted a strong mentoring program for new hires, but didn’t deliver on that promise, the employee is going to feel burned. They’ll also wonder what else you’re lying about. From job description to day-to-day job duties, always be honest with your employees.

4. Offer flexibility.

For many employees, scheduling flexibility has gone from a “nice-to-have” perk to an absolute “must-have.” So if your company doesn’t offer flexibility, then it’s only a matter of time before employees leave for companies that do.

5. Invest more in hiring right.

Another primary reason for turnover? A mismatch between an employee and their job. Sometimes, when a company hires too quickly or doesn’t assess personality along with skill set, a hiring mistake can occur and turnover will follow suit.

That’s why it’s so important to hire the right person from the start…even if it means a longer process to do so.

If you need help hiring and retaining top people for your organization, call Morgan Hunter. As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, we’ve helped companies throughout the area secure their most valuable asset – quality employees. And we can help you too!

Contact us today if you’re ready to find out more.

Narrowing Your Candidate Field: How to Utilize the Experience of Your Recruiter

December 24th, 2013

Post a job, get bombarded by resumes from hundreds of job candidates…many of whom aren’t qualified. If this sounds familiar, you’re certainly not alone. But if you work with a Kansas City recruiter, the good news is that you can leverage their experience to your benefit – to help you narrow the candidate field and identify the best person for the job. Here’s how:

Recruiters can sell your position. 

One of the most often overlooked – yet critical – aspects of a candidate search is the job posting. But many employers make the mistake of recycling old ads or not investing the time and effort to develop an attractive and articulate job ad.

But recruiters are experts at selling jobs. They know what candidates want in employers and jobs. And they can work with you to learn about your company, its culture and your needs in the new hire. They will then combine the two to craft a more effective job ad that will attract a higher quality candidate.

Recruiters can locate the best candidates. 

Recruiters recruit. That’s what they do. And through this experience, they know the best places to find top candidates, as well as how to approach them.

For instance, they know that many high level candidates are passive (i.e. not actively looking for new jobs) and need to be engaged and enticed in a certain way in order to gain interest in your position. As a business owner or hiring manager, you can take advantage of this expertise to expand your candidate network and secure the best person for the job.

Recruiters can screen effectively. 

Reviewing resumes and interviewing candidates is a time consuming task. And if you don’t approach it right, the end result can be disastrous in the form of a bad hire.

A recruiter can help you avoid this situation altogether by meticulously screening and evaluating each candidate based on your unique criteria for the position – ultimately ensuring you end up hiring the right employee for your company.

Recruiters can give you insight and recommendations.

By the very nature of what they do, recruiters are on top of employment trends involving recruiting and retention. That means you can tap that knowledge to not only make the best hiring decisions, but also to retain your star performers.

In addition, a recruiter can give you recommendations as to how to strengthen your employment brand, which is key to attracting top talent.

Ready to work with experienced recruiters who can help you identify the best talent for your job openings? Call Morgan Hunter. As leading Kansas City recruiters, we will work with you to learn about your company, its culture, and your hiring needs. We’ll then be able to source, screen, and recommend candidates that are a great fit for you.

Contact us today to learn more about our proven approach to hiring.

Your Company’s Investments: How Important is Internal Hiring in the Mix?

December 10th, 2013

How much are you planning to spend on internal hiring in the coming year? If it’s less than last year, then you could be in trouble.

In fact, according to the 2013 Global Recruiting Trends survey recently released by LinkedIn Talent Solutions, 92% of companies plan to invest more or at least the same on internal hiring efforts. That means if you’re investment in internal hiring isn’t on par with those companies, than your best talent could jump ship –  while your competitors beat you in the marketplace.

So why so much interest in hiring from within?

With a still uncertain economy and competition for top talent fierce, employers need to retain and develop their key players. As a result, many companies – 67%, according to the survey – are focusing more effort on hiring from within. They are placing an emphasis on succession planning; how to deploy talent that’s already working for the company; investing more in training and leadership development opportunities; and ensuring employees are engaged.

There are many benefits that go along with internal hiring. A vital one is that a company will wind up with a higher quality candidate that has the right skill set and already knows and fits in with the culture.

Another key benefit of internal hiring actually impacts an employer’s brand. By helping an employee to develop and advance their career, they are more likely to express positive sentiments about their employer, which improves the overall employer brand and enables companies to attract higher quality talent.

Besides internal hiring, companies are also focusing on two other key areas when it comes to hiring, according to the study:

Social Media & Technology 

Savvy companies are realizing that their effort (or lack of) on social media channels is impacting the quality of their hires. Not only that, but they’re also able to use data garnered from these sites in order to make stronger hiring decisions.

In addition, more and more companies are investing resources to ensure their job postings and career websites are mobile friendly – particularly critical considering more than half of all candidates search for jobs via a smart phone or tablet. And this number is only going to grow in the future.

Employer Brand 

If you’re not familiar with what an employer brand is, it’s simply the image a company projects to potential and existing employees. According to the survey, today’s companies are learning that having a strong employer brand leads to lower turnover rates and costs per hire. Not only does it help when it comes to recruiting highly skilled new employees, but it also enhances their loyalty by increasing their identification with the firm. Likewise, it raises a company’s visibility in the employment market, helping it to stand out from the competition.

While the findings of this study are varied, one key point is clear: companies must to continue to invest heavily in their recruiting and hiring efforts in order to remain competitive. If you’d like some expert assistance in your hiring efforts, call Morgan Hunter. As one of Overland Park’s leading staffing firms, we pride ourselves on the service and results we provide for our clients. Our approach to hiring is not only distinctive, but highly successful as well.

Contact us today if you’re ready to learn more about how we can help you.

5 Reasons Hiring New College Graduates Can Produce High ROI

November 12th, 2013

Sure, new college graduates may lack the experience and insight you’d typically look for when hiring for your company. But there are also plenty of benefits to hiring them, including ones that can help you produce a higher return on your investment. Here’s a look at a few:

Reason #1: Less Money 

As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, Morgan Hunter can tell you that most college grads know the job market right now is not great, especially for their demographic. That’s not to say they are willing to take on any job. However, if you’re offering them an opportunity to get their foot in the door at a great company and learn from industry pros, even if the salary is less than stellar, most will jump at the chance.

Reason #2: Eager to Learn 

Most new college grads are still in the learning mindset. They’re used to going to class and reading everything they can get their hands on about a particular subject. They will have no problem continuing with this attitude once on the job. So how does it benefit you?

First, they will be self-motivated to learn all they can about the position and the company so they can do a great job. Also, if they are new to the industry, be sure to introduce them to the best industry publications, websites and resources so they can read up on news, trends and challenges. By doing so, they can come to the table with their own informed ideas and insight.

Reason #3: Learn New Technologies Fast 

New college grads have grown up with the Internet and laptops. And they can’t live without their smart phones and tablets. As a result, most are extremely comfortable with learning new technology and software programs. And in fact, they may even be more familiar with certain tools and applications than some of your senior staff.

Reason #4: They Can Adapt to Change

Today’s business environment is highly competitive and rapidly changing. To be successful in it, you have to be ready to adapt and change course. New college grads typically are much more willing to accept and adapt to change than older workers, looking at it as an excellent chance to learn and grow.

Reason #5: They are Team Players

Most projects require a solid team in order to get off the ground and produce positive results. And today, most college grads are solid team players. Perhaps it’s due to their use of social media, but working together often comes more naturally to this demographic.

Need More Help Hiring for Your Team?

Give Morgan Hunter a call. As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, we can work with you to evaluate your current workforce and staffing challenges – and create a strategic plan that helps you access the talent you need, while also improving ROI.

Contact Morgan Hunter today to learn more.

6 Reasons Your Star Talent is Looking to Leave

October 22nd, 2013

Employers put a lot of time and effort into recruiting and hiring today’s top talent. But as a leading Kansas City staffing agency, Morgan Hunter knows that unfortunately, retaining them often becomes an afterthought.

However, the fact of the matter is that even in today’s difficult economy, there are still plenty of opportunities out there for the cream of the crop – and your top talent may be in the midst of searching for one.

So why is your top talent about to jump ship to a different company? Below are 6 possible reasons:

Reason #1: A Bad Manager 

One of the biggest reasons employees leave is because of an issue with their direct supervisor. Whether it’s a lack of people skills, unclear expectations, or rude behavior, the end result is disengaged workers looking for a new opportunity.

What’s interesting though is that so many managers out there today are thrust into their positions of leadership without any people management skills. And their lack of training shows loud and clear in their high turnover numbers.

Reason #2: No Advancement

If an employee is locked in the same position, year after year, with no prospects for growth and advancement, they will grow bored and frustrated. So if you don’t allow them to spread their wings, then they’re going to look for another company that will. That’s why it’s so important to create and communicate clear career paths so employees know how to move ahead at the company.

Reason #3: An Unhealthy Culture 

If your work culture requires round the clock work, pressure cooker deadlines and stress to the max, then it’s no wonder your top talent is looking to leave. Considering the amount of time employees spend at work, they want to operate in an environment that is well balanced, supportive and even a little bit fun.

Reason #4: Lack of Vision 

Employees want to work for companies that have a strong mission and vision. On the other hand, when there’s confusion and no clear focus, employees become disengaged and uninterested in doing great work. It’s up to a company’s leaders to lay out their vision for the company and get employees to buy-in to it.

Reason #5: Lack of Recognition

The best employees don’t need constant slaps on the back. But what they do need is a little credit when it is due. And when bosses either a) don’t offer praise or b) steal the credit, then they’re basically asking good employees to leave.

Reason #6: A Failure to Keep Commitments

If you promised an employee something and failed to follow through, trust us, they will remember, no matter how insignificant it seems. A failure to keep your commitments will translate into a lack of trust among your staff.

Need more assistance recruiting, hiring – and retaining top talent? Give Morgan Hunter a call. As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, we’ve helped companies throughout the area secure their most valuable asset – quality employees. And we can help you too!

Contact us today if you’re ready to find out more.

Turnover Happens! Make Sure You Learn From It

October 8th, 2013

As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, Morgan Hunter knows that having your star talent hand in their two weeks notice is like a sucker punch to the gut. You’ve counter-offered and counter-offered again. But, alas, they are set upon leaving. What can you do?

While losing top talent is always a big blow to a company, don’t miss out on an opportunity to learn from the experience. What you do learn, if put into practice, can help you avoid high turnover in the future.

The best way to learn? Conduct an exit interview. But in order to get the most out of it, you need to approach it in the right away. To help you, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

Don’t let the employee’s manager conduct the exit interview. 

Many employees leave their companies because of an issue with their direct supervisor. So by letting this person conduct the interview, you’re not only sending a hostile message to the soon-to-be former employee, but you’re also not going to garner any useful information…making the interview pointless. Instead, have a neutral party – like an HR professional – conduct the interview. You’re much more likely to get open, unfiltered feedback when you do.

Don’t conduct the interview right after their resignation.

When an employee finally decides to resign, emotions are running high. It’s likely a decision they’ve pondered for weeks and have dreaded handing in their two-week notice. Once they do, you may be in a bit of shock and even panic mode. That’s why this is not a good time to conduct an exit interview.

Instead, if the employee is staying on for two weeks, conduct the exit interview a few days before they leave. That will give everyone some time to gain perspective and hopefully offer more constructive feedback as a result.

Dig deep with lots of follow up questions. 

Sure, the employee’s new company may offer better pay or benefits. But is that the real reason why they’re leaving? There was something that happened that made them want to leave in the first place, before they even landed the new job offer. So what was it?

Your goal during an exit interview should be to find out what that thing was – whether it was one incident, or many factors over time. And the best way to do that is to ask pointed questions and follow up. The employee’s first answer is likely to be a canned response. But when you ask follow up questions – tell me more, what do you mean?, can you offer more detail? – you’re more likely to get to the root of the real issue.

Put what you learned into action.

Unfortunately, most companies simply file away exit interview forms, never to be heard from again. But there’s no point in going through the process if this is what you’re going to do. If you don’t want the truth, then don’t ask for it!

Instead, when you get a valid criticism, take it to heart and do something about it so other great employees don’t leave because of it.

Need to fill the shoes of a former employee? Let Morgan Hunter know. As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, we’ve helped companies throughout the area secure their most valuable asset – quality employees. And we can help you too! Contact us today if you’re ready to find out more.

Is Your Online Presence Scaring Candidates Away?

September 24th, 2013

When it comes to attracting top talent, most companies know they need to have an online presence. However, as a leading Kansas City staffing agency, Morgan Hunter knows many of them don’t invest the necessary time and resources toward making that presence great. As a result, candidates wind up having a confusing or frustrating experience – which reflects poorly on the company as a whole.

So is your online presence scaring job candidates away? It is if you’re making these mistakes:

Making Job Postings Hard to Find 

Do job candidates get to your career site and have a hard time finding job postings? If they have to click more than three times, then your job postings are buried and you’re going to lose top candidates.

Keep in mind, the #1 reason people are going to your site is to apply for jobs. If postings are hard to find, then you’re reducing the number of qualified candidates who will apply. Instead, give your job postings front and center visibility.

Not Updating the Site Frequently

It’s imperative to ensure all job postings are current. There’s nothing more annoying to a job candidate than to find a posting that seems ideal for them, only to find out the application deadline has passed.

In addition, make sure all company information and news and events are timely and accurate. Outdated information will make your company look sloppy and disorganized.

Making Your Site All About You

Sure, candidates want to know about your company if they’re considering working there. However, you shouldn’t make your career website all about you. Rather, you should be promoting what your company can do for its employees.

For instance, do you offer a mentoring program, opportunities for advancement, or flexible schedules? Whatever unique perks you can provide to employees, you should be highlighting them on the site, whether through page copy, video or blog postings. So quit talking about the company and all you require – and focus instead on why someone would want to work for you.

Slow Loading Content 

You know it’s annoying to go to a web page and have to sit there for a minute until the page content loads. So why do you put potential candidates through that experience? Rather, skip the Flash and huge graphics that make your site’s load time slow and instead aim to offer an easy user experience and fresh and engaging content.

Not Optimizing the Site for Mobile Devices

Today, a majority of job candidates use their mobile devices to search for and apply to job postings. And if your career site isn’t optimized for mobile, then you are missing out on top talent. So it’s important to work with a developer who can ensure that your site looks great and functions properly on the web, smart phones and tablets.

Still not sure how effective – or not – your career website is? Then have someone who isn’t an employee go through the process of applying for a job and perusing the site. Then ask them to rate their experience. This kind of objective feedback can prove invaluable when trying to design the best candidate experience possible.

And if you need additional help attracting top candidates, give Morgan Hunter a call. As a leading Kansas City staffing agency, we’ve helped companies throughout the area secure their most valuable asset – quality employees. And we can help you too! Contact us today if you’re ready to find out more.

 

 

Increase Sales by Refocusing on Building Long-Term Relationships with Clients

September 17th, 2013

You know relationships with your clients are critical to business success. So why then are you focusing all your time and attention on getting new clients, instead of refocusing some of that energy into keeping existing clients happy?

As one of the leading sales and marketing staffing agencies in Kansas City, Morgan Hunter knows when it comes to client loyalty, it’s all about relationships. And if you don’t have strong ones with your clients, then they will jump ship at the first opportunity.

To help you build better long-term relationships with your clients, consider these tips:

Create Regular Touchpoints 

You should build in regular touchpoints with your clients throughout the year. These can include in person meetings with them to review existing projects or services along with future needs; phone calls to check in; emails notifying them of business articles of interest; newsletters with timely information; invitations to events they may benefit from; and introductions to other clients offering complementary services.

These communications should not be focused on sales; rather, you should be positioning yourself as an expert and a trusted partner so when they need a service you offer, they will think of you first.

Always Be Honest 

Nothing undermines a long-term relationship like deception and dishonesty. So always be honest and upfront with your clients. You are trying to cultivate a reputation of integrity – a trait successful businesses depend on – and even the smallest white lie will erode it.

Meet Deadlines 

Ever hear the saying “under-promise and over-deliver”? Well, this is especially true when it comes to developing long-term relationships with clients. One missed deadline can seriously harm your relationship and get your client thinking about other options. So set realistic deadlines from the get-go and then do everything in your power to meet them.

Think of Yours Client as People 

Your clients are more than just a way for you to meet your sales goals. They are real people, with likes and dislikes in terms of how they want to conduct business; professional and personal goals; and visions for their futures. And the faster you recognize this, the better you will be at not only developing relationships, but building close, personal ties that stand the test of time.

Bonus tip: Another tip for communicating with clients – and building strong relationships as a result – is to raise your social media visibility. On your social media pages, you can post relevant content of interest and also give your clients a channel on which to communicate with you. This results in creating a dialogue between you and your clients, which contributes positively to client loyalty.

Need a social media expert – or any other kind of sales and marketing expert – to help you build relationships with your clients? Let Morgan Hunter know. As a leading sales and marketing staffing agency in Kansas City, we have the resources and first-hand industry knowledge to connect you with highly qualified, high-caliber candidates. Contact us today to learn more.