5 Ways to Avoid Coworker Turnover in the Retail Industry

According to the 2021 Bureau of Labor Statics report, co-worker turnover rate across industries is a dismal 57%. Retail, unfortunately, is even more abysmal, hovering between 60% and 65%. How can you create excitement in your co-workers about their jobs and motivate them to meet customer needs every day? Pollock Orora has a handful of ideas on how to increase co-worker retention.

  • Increase advancement

If the majority of your co-workers have topped out, lack of incentive is obvious. More than 9 out of 10 co-workers report they left their past position because they did not have the opportunity to develop and grow.

When a co-worker is hired, determine that person’s goals and ambitions, and help chart a path to meet those goals.

  • If the desired position requires an advanced degree, think about tuition reimbursement.
  • For sales positions, offer contests to boost the competitive aspect of the job.
  • All co-workers benefit greatly from cross-training, which also benefits your company. Let co-workers observe and work with co-workers across your industry to better understand what happens across the company.

Whatever you choose, ensure your co-workers have room for growth. Once a co-worker’s goal is reached, work with that individual to set higher goals.

  • Offer fair compensation

Retail work is fairly similar from one business to the next. If your company’s compensation package is significantly out of line with your competition, your turnover rate will increase. An Achievers study in 2019 reported more than half the workforce would consider leaving their current position for a pay raise, and 20% would leave for increased benefits.

  • Balance work with life

July 2021 was a breaking point for many retail co-workers, with approximately 682,000 individuals walking away from work because of the encroachment of work life into personal life.

    • COVID-19 proved many co-workers can work more cost-effectively and strategically from home. As the pandemic wanes, many companies are telling their co-workers to return to their desks, even with studies proving it is economically more feasible to work remotely. Give your co-workers the option of working from home if they can. According to recent growth patterns, approximately 25% of all co-workers – including those in retail positions – will be remote by 2025.
    • Schedule flexibility is another sticking point for many co-workers. Juggling a busy home life with picking up children from school, planning birthday parties, nursing a sick family member, attending soccer games, and caring for elderly parents leaves large holes in a traditional work day. If your co-workers have the option of working flexible hours throughout the week, chances are retention rates will increase dramatically.
  • Hire the correct person for the position

So often businesses adopt a hiring strategy of choosing the best of 3 or 5 individuals. That does not necessarily imply the person being hired is the perfect fit for that position. Don’t settle. If a position is open longer than anticipated, update the job description and think of increasing the base pay. Remember, quality candidates respond to quality positions. Hiring a co-worker who matches the position vastly improves the chance of retention.

Nearly one third of new hires resign within 6 months because the job is more or less than what they had anticipated. Turn that number around by reviewing job requirements, training strategies, compensation packages, and other aspects of the position to your choice candidates.

  • Create a positive company culture

When co-workers feel appreciated, they are more likely to remain in their current role. Be positive in your words and your actions. Encourage your co-workers with surprise lunches, quick emails with a specific example of a job well done, or a company t-shirt.

Help increase engagement with team-building exercises, company picnics, and family movie or game nights.

Ask for co-worker input before changes are implemented, especially those co-workers who are affected by the changes. When you follow through on comments made from co-worker feedback, the co-workers feel more worthy and that they are being heard.

Pollock Orora knows co-worker turnover is expensive. In fact, replacing a co-worker sometimes costs more than twice his or her salary. Retain your co-workers with advice from Pollock Orora. We are here to assist you!