Research suggests that over a third of all workers aim to leave their current employment once the recession has subsided and the job market has been re-ignited.
For call centres, which employ around three per cent of the UK workforce, this could leave an unwieldy bill upwards of £1.89billion to foot over the next year.
Call centres in particular, are noted by the CIPD as among the industry sectors with the highest levels of staff turnover. With the average cost for replacing staff estimated by the CIPD at £6,125, rising to £9,000 for senior managers, call centre managers should pre-empt any threat of an employee exodus by looking after their valued staff now.
They say that prevention is better than the cure so installing engaging total rewards solutions that offer employees aspirational incentives for achieving long-term goals could well prove to be the best strategy. While a cautious approach to rewards and recognition has been necessary over the last year, from both a financial and a PR perspective, now is the time to begin re-introducing appropriate performance incentives. It is an investment where the overall cost will quite easily be less than the financial investment.
While the recession has presented a distinct set of challenges for HR and marketing departments aiming to engage staff towards working their way out of these difficult times, it is important to expect a shift in objectives over the coming year as the economy stabilises and workers build confidence about their prospects of alternative employment.
The answer is to create an employee engagement culture that can become the cause of envy. With this, top performers will recognise that they are already in the best place and will not be so easily tempted away by competitive offers. Otherwise, failing to confront employee retention issues now could prove very costly indeed.
John Sylvester is Executive Director at P&MM Motivation