Back in May 2021, news broke that would install fear into businesses up and down the UK. Coined “The Great Resignation”, the term referred to an unprecedented rise in employers resigning from their jobs in the wake of the pandemic.
With studies showing that most resignations were born from a desire to simply move sideways into a similar role for another company, businesses were startled at the realisation that they weren’t doing enough to retain their star talent.
To fight back, they have taken stock of both their business and workplace, paying closer attention to employee demand in order to turn the tables.
The Great Resignation: Just how accurate was it?
Some leaders may have scoffed at The Great Resignation trend, believing it to be wholly exaggerated. They were instead left wholly surprised!
Figures indeed show that there was a sharp increase in resignations from the end of 2020 to the final quarter of 2021 here in the UK alone, rising from just over 200,000 to over 500,000. Most of these employees weren’t giving up work altogether, they were simply moving to start a new job with another employer.
Those who left their place of work to a different occupation during the above timeframe saw minimal change, but there was a staggering jump from around 50,000 to 300,000 people who sidestepped into a similar role.
Of course, it may have been that a company was offering better pay for similar levels of responsibility, but with these figures being recorded prior to the cost-of-living crisis, it would be accurate to suggest there were also other motives for their decision.
In the modern world it is not just salary that influences us.
Why were employees looking for opportunities elsewhere?
A Harvard Business Review noted that a key demographic who were driving the change was those aged 30-45. This is rather interesting.
These are mid-career team members who already have several years of experience under their belts and lots of earning potential ahead of them. It could be that they were just seeking opportunities to further themselves, but why then would many step into a similar role?
Labour shortages could have been a major impact. For example, it was believed that the manufacturing sector had been hit by an influx of early retirements, whilst hospitality was suffering from a lower rate of younger workers.
What this led to was existing employers having to take on more responsibility without perhaps much acknowledgement from their employers. It was almost expected. It is therefore easily believable that staff might look elsewhere not for better pay, but for more appreciation and better working conditions.
Of course, it is hard to overlook the possibility of a higher salary. It is widely regarded that the best way to progress is to transfer, though you should still never disregard the importance of wellness initiatives to keep staff happy.
What is also interesting, though, is that the rate of resignations and vacancies has clearly slowed since the final quarter of 2021. Whatever businesses have been doing since then is working.
Give employee wellness the respect it deserves.
Coinadrink Limited the vending machine company has always seen value in meaningful employee wellness initiatives and there has never been a better time to implement them than now.
It would certainly seem that for the businesses that have done so since the pandemic, they have played their part in halting The Great Resignation and driving The Great Re-engagement.
We have long said that the best way to keep your team happy at work is by finding out what will make them happy. You’d be surprised to find out that they aren’t expecting grand gestures, which is why initiatives such as free coffee, breakout areas and health and wellness vouchers go a long way.
We specialise in the former. There is a lot to be said for a genuine break time, which is a great way to eliminate micromanagement and place the trust back into your employees. Break times don’t halt productivity, they help it flourish, and with facilities like office coffee machines or vending machines you are showing you care for their wellbeing.
From water coolers in corridors to designated breakout areas equipped with everything your team will love, we have over 60 years’ experience in raising company culture and making sure your business is a great one to work for.
There will always be a turnover from staff, but you can steady the flow and highlight exactly why your existing staff should stay and why prospects should join. Then will you able to mould The Great Re-engagement.
10-11, Maple Leaf Industrial Estate, Bloxwich Ln, Walsall WS2 8TF