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8 Signs Talent Retention Strategies are faltering - Americas
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8 Signs Talent Retention Strategies are faltering - Americas


This ebook is extracted out of the report Acquisition and Retention in the War for Talent. It belongs to the Kelly Global Workforce Index, a global questionnaire of the workforce solution company …

This ebook is extracted out of the report Acquisition and Retention in the War for Talent. It belongs to the Kelly Global Workforce Index, a global questionnaire of the workforce solution company Kelly Services across 30 countries with more than 165,000 participants.

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  • 1. 8signs talentretentionstrategiesare falteringkelly Global workforce index ™michael s. websterThe Americas:Canada, United States,Puerto Rico & Mexico
  • 2. Talent retention suffers a setback in the AmericasOver the past three years, employees’ intentions to leave They want meaning in their work. Today’s employees and looking to careers with multiple organizations, wheretheir current jobs have risen more steeply in the Americas want to feel valued and they want to be challenged. Few the skills and quality of the work they engage in is the keythan anywhere else in the world. organizations appear to be meeting the mark on these driver of satisfaction. fronts, and employees are not overly optimistic aboutJust three years ago, when the first significant effects of their ability to influence this change within their current In many ways, the results we see emerging over thethe great recession were being felt, employee retention organization. Instead, they’re carefully planning their next year are simply an intensification of a longer termin the region was the highest in the world. Now, it seems next career move with an eye on attaining new skills and trend that’s been building for some time. Decliningemployees are taking their careers into their own hands. broader experience, which they hope will shore up their satisfaction and meaning at work is reaching a naturalThey’re reporting high levels of dissatisfaction, but it’s not future employment prospects. crescendo—and it’s hardly assisted by ongoing marketthe trivial kind. Rather, they appear to be searching for turmoil and the quickening pace of change. Now, it’sorganizations that will embrace their potential, provide To some degree, these patterns are similar across up to HR professionals, hiring managers and seniorthem with consistent challenges, and this—far more than the globe. Of 170,000 employees surveyed across 30 leaders across the region’s organizations to respond,higher salaries or better benefits—is the reward they are countries, two-thirds are planning to switch organizations and respond decisively.seeking in spite of economic uncertainty. within the next year. Yet, employees in the Americas have bucked this trend in the past. Now, they’re falling in lineKelly Global Workforce Index™ 2
  • 3. 1 / Voluntary attrition increases sharplyMany more employees are looking to move organizations than they were threeyears ago—a result that puts the Americas in line with a strong global trend.Employees in the Americas have seen the greatest job switchingupswing in voluntary, planned attrition intentions, with Job Switching AMERICAS Do you intend to look for a job with another organization within the next year? (% Yes, by region)an increase of some 20 percentage points over the past 100three years. Other regions report unchanged, or only 69% 74% 58% 62%slightly elevated, results on this front. 90 80This year, two-thirds of workers in the Americas(67%) say they intend to look for a job with another 70organization, compared with just 45% in 2009. InMexico, this figure is among the highest in the world, 60with almost three-quarters of workers (74%) planning 50a career move this year. Canada is also higher thanthe global average at 69%, and the U.S. is just slightly 40lower at 62 percent. Puerto Rico is the lowest within the 30Americas, and significantly below the global average. 20It appears that employees plan to move organizationsas part of a broader career strategy, perhaps in 10response to decreasing career prospects in their current 0role and the need to acquire new skills in a rapidly Canada Mexico Puerto Rico United Statesevolving market.Kelly Global Workforce Index™ 3
  • 4. 2 / Exits are now well-planned, strategic decisionsWhile voluntary attrition plans are on the rise, unplannedexits driven by personal frustration are low.Fewer employees in the Americas feel the “I quit” urge “I quit!”than those in other parts of the world, yet more have I Quit! AMERICAS Do you frequently think about quitting your current job and leaving your employer? (% Yes, by region)already planned to leave for strategic reasons. It’s not 100sudden dissatisfaction that’s driving people’s intent to 29% 27% 22% 28%move on, but something more complex. 90 80Above all, employees are seeking greater opportunitiesto develop and excel in their field. They want to use 70more of their existing skills and experience, and theywant a genuine challenge. However, few employers 60appear to be offering it. 50More than one-third of respondents globally (37%) 40say they frequently think about quitting their job andleaving their employer. This is considerably lower in the 30Americas where fewer than three in ten people (28%) 20frequently feel like quitting their job. Across each of theregions within the Americas this result is similar, with 10Puerto Rico again significantly below the regional and 0global average. Canada Mexico Puerto Rico United StatesKelly Global Workforce Index™ 4
  • 5. 3 / Lack of ‘meaning’ at work is eroding satisfactionHappiness at work comes from a sense of meaning and achievement—withoutit employees are looking elsewhere in spite of economic uncertainty.In the Americas, just half of employees (50%) feel that job fulfillmentthey have a sense of ‘meaning’ in their work. While Job Fulfillment AMERICAS Does your current employment provide you with a sense of “meaning”? (% Yes, by region)both Canada and the U.S. report lower levels of 100‘meaning’ in their work than the global average, more 42% 77% 58% 42%than three-quarters of people in Mexico (77%) feel they 90have genuine job fulfillment. 80The issue of ‘meaning’ is closely linked to how happy 70employees are in their jobs. Employees in both Canadaand U.S. report low levels of happiness—just 47% and 6048% respectively, while 58% in Puerto Rico and 71% 50of those in Mexico say they are happy with their job.So it seems that while some people can have meaning 40without happiness and vice versa, for most the two 30issues are linked. 20 10 0 Canada Mexico Puerto Rico United StatesKelly Global Workforce Index™ 5
  • 6. 4 / They believe having multiple employers is an advantageWhile some still believe its possible to have one employer for life,most see multiple employers is a career asset.While many in Mexico still believe in the concept of one one employer for lifeemployer for life (66%), which is well ahead of those One Employer for Life AMERICAS To what degree do you agree or disagree that a “career-for-life” with one employer is relevant? (Total ‘agree’)who still hold this view in Canada and the U.S. (38% 100and 45% respectively), it seems it is becoming less and 38% 66% 54% 45%less likely in reality. Most employees now believe that 90staying with a single employer is a limitation on their 80career prospects. 70In the U.S., some 60% of workers feel that gainingexperience with multiple employers is an asset to their 60careers, as do 64% of workers in Canada, and 74% of 50those in Mexico. 40 30 20 10 0 Canada Mexico Puerto Rico United StatesKelly Global Workforce Index™ 6
  • 7. 5 / Counter offers are unlikely to change their mindsFew employees are keen to have an open dialogue with their employers about theirdesire to move on, which signals their minds are already made up.People in both the U.S. and Canada align with the likely to share quitting plansglobal trend of not intending to share their quitting How likely are you to share your potential plans to move to another organization with your employer, withplans with their employers—just 29% in both countries Likely to share quitting plans AMERICAS the thought that this may result in changes that may motivate you to stay? (Total ‘likely’, by region)say they would do so. However, employees in Mexico 100 29% 44% 46% 29%and Puerto Rico are significant outliers on this count. 90Almost half (44% and 46% respectively) say they wouldshare their intentions with their employer in the hope 80that it will result in changes or counter-offers that will 70enable them to stay put. 60While there are large differences across the region, alarge number of employees seem set on their plans 50to move organizations regardless of their managers’ 40response to their resignation. Given that most counteroffers are usually just a rise in pay, employees are again 30indicating that financial incentives are not the only kindof change they’re looking for. 20 10 0 Canada Mexico Puerto Rico United StatesKelly Global Workforce Index™ 7
  • 8. 6 / Few employees feelvalued or fully utilizedJust 45% of employees in the Americas say they feel realising potentialvalued by their current employer. Realising potential AMERICAS Do you feel that our current employer is realising the full benefits of your potential? (% Yes, by region) 100The sense of being valued is lowest in the U.S. (42%) 29% 39% 31% 28%and considerably higher in Mexico and Puerto Rico 90(both 53%) with Canada sitting in the middle at 8046 percent. 70Many employees across the region also report thattheir full potential is not being realized by their current 60employer. Just 31% of employees in Puerto Rico, 29% 50in Canada and 28% in the U.S. feel they are maximizingtheir abilities in their current role. In Mexico this figure 40is significantly higher at 39%, but still well short ofrepresenting a full engaged and utilized workforce. 30 20 10 0 Canada Mexico Puerto Rico United StatesKelly Global Workforce Index™ 8
  • 9. 7 / They want personal fulfillment and to be challengedWhat really keeps employees engaged— enjoyable and challengingwork—is often difficult for managers to respond to.When asked about what drives the decision to accept Factors that drive job choice factors that drive job choiceone role over another, personal fulfillment and personal Which of the following factors would drive your decision to accept one job/position over another? (By region)growth/advancement accounts for around eight in every 10010 responses. In Puerto Rico, these two factors accountfor slightly less (70% of responses), while in the U.S theyaccount for 74% and 80% in Canada. In Mexico, 85% of 80people say these two factors are the main reasons foraccepting one job over another.When asked which factor makes them feel more 60committed and engaged with their current job,‘more challenging and interesting work’, and ‘moremeaningful responsibility’ accounted for the majority of 40responses—well ahead of higher salaries and benefits.In the U.S this accounted for four in ten responses(40%), in the Canada the proportion was 46%, in 20Mexico it was 43%, and lowest in Puerto Rico (37%). 0 Canada Mexico Puerto Rico United States Personal fulfillment/growth/advancement Compensation/benefitsKelly Global Workforce Index™ 9
  • 10. 8 / Their desire for reward is personalDon’t assume all employees are looking for a raise—it’s usually more complicated than that.Compared to the global average, fewer people in the Rewarding Performance Americas rewarding performanceAmericas expect any form of reward for a job well done. What is your preferred way of being rewarded for good performance at work (By region)This is highest in the U.S., with more than one-quarter 100of people (26%) saying they don’t require a specificperformance reward, and significantly lower in Mexicoat 13 percent. 80The significant differences across all countries andregions points to the fact that rewards and incentivesare very personal. Having a one-size-fits-all approach 60is likely to miss the mark, as none of the suggestedperformance rewards can claim to meet the desires ofthe majority of any worker population. 40 20 0 Canada Mexico Puerto Rico United States Financial Bonus None requiredKelly Global Workforce Index™ 10
  • 11. conclusionA strong, global pattern has emerged in talent retention. performance target. After all, large numbers of people encouraging other departments/managers and teamsMost people are planning to switch organizations within say that challenging work helps to keep them engaged to seek skills internally, will increase development andthe next year, and they have clear, strategic reasons why in their job. growth opportunities for internal talent.they’re doing so. • Commit resources to documenting and keeping • Focus on ways to demonstrate the outcomes andFew feel that their current organization is accessing their track of employees’ skills: few employees feel their contribution of each employee’s role: meaningpotential, which inevitably throws up a negative cycle: as full potential is being utilized in their role. This is a at work is critical to engagement and satisfaction,one employee leaves to pursue their potential, another poor outcome for both employee and employer. Some so finding ways to demonstrate the ways in whicharrives in their place with the same goal. It seems both of this is simply that managers and HR departments each role contributes to overall outcomes is key towill get what they seek for the short term and then the do not always have a clear view of the skills that retention and productivity. Team recognition is fine,cycle will repeat, leaving HR and hiring managers to pick each employee has, and as a result they fail to be but individuals (particularly highly talented ones) wantup the pieces and consistently plug skill gaps. proactive about helping employees use these as new to see how they impact results too, and this means opportunities arise. finding ways to measure and report on it.Instead of being locked into an endless, vicious cycle, HR • Find ways to move employees internally: for most • Make the most of contingent workers: aroundprofessionals, hiring managers and senior leaders in the employees, the idea of an employer for life is outdated one-third of most workforces are now made up ofregion should look to: and instead they actively seek new employers to contingent labor, and these workers need to be kept• Give employees a voice in how they’re rewarded: access and develop new skills. This can be provided engaged, motivated and rewarded too. This highly don’t assume a bonus will always be top of the list. internally, but is likely to fail if the entire process relies skilled group offers a wealth of potential, but if it’s Consider other projects, skills and responsibilities that on managers. Allowing employees to choose projects not being used, they’re more likely than others to staff can be exposed to should they reach their high- and make a case for being part of them, as well move quickly.Kelly Global Workforce Index™ 11
  • 12. This ebook is extracted out of the report Acquisition and Retention in the War for Talent. Download your FREE copy today.About the AuthorMichael S. Webster is executive vice president and general manager, Americas, for Kelly Services. Prior to joining Kelly, Mr. Webster worked for nearly 20 years at GE Plastics, last serving as general managerof the company’s North Central region. Mr. Webster holds a bachelor’s degree in business administrationfrom West Virginia University.MethodologyThe Kelly Global Workforce Index was open to respondents around the globe and took the form of a questionnaire on the KellyServices website. Data was collated and analyzed by RDA Group. A number of questions have remained consistent over the courseof the survey and allow time-series analysis.About KellyKelly Services, Inc. (NASDAQ: KELYA, KELYB) is a leader in providing workforce solutions. Kelly® offers a comprehensive array ofoutsourcing and consulting services as well as world-class staffing on a temporary, temporary-to-hire and direct-hire basis. Servingclients around the globe, Kelly provides employment to more than 550,000 employees annually. Revenue in 2011 was $5.6 billion.Visit and connect with us on Facebook, LinkedIn, & Twitter. EXITKelly Global Workforce Index™