Retention Deep Dive: Workplace Practices

The overwhelming reasons employees leave companies are for more money and better benefits, to progress in their careers, to gain a better work-life balance, and because of ineffective leadership. A lot of employee turnover could be prevented by making small changes in workplace practices that can make a big difference.

While serving as interim CHRO at a $300M manufacturing company, a Beckway operator noted how the company’s workplace practices were negatively affecting their retention rate. Some challenges included the recruiting sources not delivering top talent, compensation below market rates for low-retention roles and continued unrecognized wage rate inflation, limited recognition and promotion opportunities, and a lack of focus on development and feedback opportunities.

The operator took steps to correct the company’s current recruiting and onboarding process, compensation and benefits, rewards and recognition, training and development, career advancement and promotion, performance management, and workplace conditions. These improvements included:

  • Raised expectations on recruiters for talent capabilities to create a stronger pipeline of higher caliber, qualified candidates
  • Provided every employee with a letter that quantified their total compensation increase transparency and employees’ understanding of compensation
  • Increased incumbent hourly pay for key manufacturing floor roles
  • Increased referral bonus
  • Engaged employees and discussed rewards & recognition to determine employees’ incentives from their point of view
  • Developed training program for supervisors and managers to have difficult conversations and to provide regular performance feedback

Since implementing the above changes, all key positions have been filled and turnover has been reduced significantly. The company is also seeing a better caliber of candidates applying and a palpable improvement in the buzz around the company.

For more information contact Keith Swenson at

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