As the recession gradually wanes in its intensity, companies are growing increasingly concerned about key talent leaving. Sixty-four percent of companies are worried they may lose managers in a better job market, according to a survey of 262 companies by global talent management firm OI Partners, while 48 percent are worried they may lose executives.
Organizations may not be off base in their fears as more employees voluntarily quit their jobs in February, March, and April of 2010 than were laid off, based on information from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. February 2010 marked the first time in 15 months (since October 2008) that this was the case.
"There is a lot of pent-up frustration among employees who have survived layoffs, cutbacks, salary freezes, and other givebacks," said Tim Schoonover, chairman of OI Partners. "Companies have to demonstrate to employees that they are valued by investing in their career development, or they may lose them.”
The costs of replacing employees at the managerial and senior levels are quite significant when considering recruitment and training of both the employee who leaves and the new worker, lost business, and severance pay and benefits. For an executive, these expenses would amount to two and a half times her salary, and for a manager, two times his salary.
To retain managers and executives, 44 percent of companies are offering better salaries and benefits, and 60 percent are using in-house trainers and coaches.
In addition, organizations are also paying closer attention to who they hire in the first place as hiring the wrong managers and executives has been reportedly tied to low employee morale (83 percent), decreased worker productivity (78 percent); lost business and market share (53 percent); and high employee turnover (54 percent).
“Companies need to adopt an effective talent management strategy to identify, develop, and retain top talent and ensure that employees are achieving their full potential,” says Schoonover. “The survey demonstrates that businesses need to focus on coaching executives and managers in motivating employees, engaging them in their jobs more fully, and promoting better teamwork.”