We are amid what many have dubbed the Great Resignation, where employers across the country are experiencing unprecedented turnover and historic shifts in labor. Many employers have made changes to improve work environments and offer sign-on bonuses, while others have looked for new ways to let employees know that they are appreciated.
As workers across the nation air grievances about low wages, lack of opportunity for advancement, and hostile work environments, it’s quite clear that there’s much to learn from the Great Resignation.
Here are three important takeaways that the Great Resignation has taught us so far.
- Employers Should Use Technology and Statistics to Monitor the Hiring Landscape
This mass quitting has inspired many companies to change the way that they do things in order to be more connected to the average human and their needs. Many hiring managers have shifted to lean heavily into surveys and statistics to find out what employees really want in an employer.
A recent survey of Zoomers or Gen Zers—those born roughly between the years of 1996 and 2012—indicated that they want to work with a company that:
- Cares about more than making a profit (61%)
- Offers a good benefits package (67%)
- Has similar values to their own (62%)
- Offers ample career progression opportunities and development (59%)
- Has a strong brand reputation (49%)
If they haven’t already, HR managers should look for ways to glean new insights about their hiring pool and then put that data to use to hone an effective recruitment strategy.
- We Must Continue to Show Employees That They Are Appreciated
About one-third of the average person’s life is spent in their place of work, and it’s no secret that employers should actively let their employees know that they are appreciated. It helps them feel that the employer empathizes with them and wants them to feel satisfied with their career choice.
Here are some helpful ways that you can let your employees know that they are appreciated:
- Hosting frequent work events
- Celebrate employee birthdays
- Give employees the opportunity to show appreciation to their coworkers
- Volunteer opportunities
- Regular work retreats
- Awards such as gift cards, paid time off, or other rewards or recognition for fine work
- Personal thank-you notes and rewards (the more tailored to the individual, the better)
- Regular expressions of gratitude, in person and in public
- Paid luncheons, dinners, and other events
- Consistently open lines of communication with your workers
- Friendly environments where employees are offered choices
- We Should Extend This Conversation Further as Employers
The COVID-19 pandemic changed much of what we once knew about hiring, and as the Great Resignation rolls along, workers are facing another, less-talked-about phenomenon. Surveys across the country are indicating that many employees are leaving one place, only to find the same issues at the next place, or at least that the new job isn’t what they were led to believe it would be. This leaves them feeling some regret—a situation dubbed the Great Regret or “shift shock.”
If the Great Resignation and the Great Regret have taught us anything, it’s that we should work together toward honest, open conversations about the workplace. Employers should be candid about their company values and products during the hiring process, even if they aren’t particularly exciting. And perhaps employees should be more realistic when it comes to their expectations.
Furthermore, employers should be upfront about the typical kind of stresses that come with the jobs they offer—and listen to candidates actively during the hiring process.