Turnover

What is turnover?

Employee turnover measures how many employees leave (voluntarily or not) within a time period, typically a year. According to the U.S. Bureau of Statistics, the average turnover rate in the U.S. is about 12% to 15% annually.

Is turnover the same as attrition?

Employee attrition is related to employee turnover, with one key difference. Turnover is a measure of employee separation when the employee is replaced by a new hire. Attrition includes all separations, whether or not the position vacated is filled.

What factors cause employee turnover?

There are many factors that can drive employees to leave:

  • Favoritism—special treatment (or the appearance of it) for some employees over others can create a negative work environment, resentment and low morale.
  • Lack of advancement opportunities–if employees don’t have a way to advance in their career, they may go elsewhere.
  • Intimidation—an organization driven by fear and compulsion is one that will have a hard time retaining top talent. Anyone able is likely to walk away.
  • Office politics–if co-workers and managers engage in unethical behavior to gain advantages, it creates a negative work environment.
  • Micromanagement—overbearing supervision gets old quick. It steals time from managers and wastes employee talent and energy.
  • Poor Communication—ineffective, insufficient, and inefficient communication can lead to frustration and failure because even the best employees have a hard time reading minds and spinning wheels.
  • Lack of recognition—employees feel their contribution is not valued.
  • Sink or swim—employees are left on their own to succeed without coaching, mentoring or support. While some can survive, most want more from their team and management.
  • Boredom—if job content and environment are not interesting an employee may begin to look elsewhere for better work.

How can HR reduce turnover?

Improved communication can improve work culture which reduces turnover. What is HR’s role in company-wide communication? Training managers is paramount. HR can train managers to do the following:

  • Highlight each employee’s unique contributions
  • Trust their team members’ ideas
  • Ask employees regularly if communication is working

Make HR easier to understand

Human Resources functions are inherently confusing. Tax forms. Health plan information. PTO structures. Company policies. New hires, especially, can feel overwhelmed when presented with seemingly endless paperwork.

HRMS (Human Resources Management Systems) can simplify all those documents. Employees complete workflows from the same HR dashboard. They access everything from an easy-to-navigate ‘home base.’ It might seem counterintuitive to improve communication with employee self-service. But that’s not the case.

HR is still there when they need it. They can talk to a real person if they can’t find the answer in the portal. But the portal provides answers to most HR issues. People who run their lives with their smartphone prefer self-service. It’s faster and you can do it at your convenience.

When employees have tools to solve HR problems, it de-stresses their jobs considerably. This is especially important for remote workers because they can’t talk to HR in person.

An HRMS has the following:

  • Company directory
  • Timecards
  • Punch in/out
  • Remote hours tracking
  • Benefits management
  • Shift schedules
  • Payroll information
  • PTO accrual reports
  • Time-off requests
  • Shift trade boards
  • Performance reviews
  • Employee recognition

If you want to lower turnover at your company, getting an HRMS is an important step.

See also

Additional resources