We all know employees work for money. But what else drives them to choose one workplace over another? What motivates them to remain in a job or move on?

As an employer, it’s key to understand why employees will stay with you. After all, high churn rates cost a lot and can affect workplace productivity and morale.

As expert recruiters we talk to thousands of jobseekers a year. Based on direct feedback, we’ve compiled the top 10 reasons motivating employees to be loyal.

  1. Vision alignment

More and more employees want to work for a business they believe in; one that aligns with who they are and how they think. The key is for you to make your vision, mission and values explicitly clear to those working for you. It’s important to promote this when recruiting, on your website and in your job specs and ads. If you don’t you could be missing out on exceptional candidates.

  1. Workplace culture

Today’s employees are—more often than not—keen to work in a rewarding, safe culture. This includes a culture with management that truly leads; one that celebrates successes and is positive and uplifting. Gone are the days when employees are comfortable with a toxic environment, so focus on building a rewarding and inspiring culture.

  1. Manager or supervisor

When an employee takes a dislike to a manger or supervisor, things become challenging. Employees respect managers who listen, are decisive, lead by example, are fair and visionary. They don’t want managers who micro manage, bully or are disrespectful. You’ll want to examine these issues in your workplace and put corrective measures in place.

  1. Growth opportunities

Employees, especially Millennials, are motivated by growing and progressing. It’s wise to expose employees to new challenges and give them opportunities to learn. Clear career paths (short and long term), incorporating cross training and creative approaches, help pave the way.

  1. Flexibility

Flexibility is the name of the game for many employees, but this doesn’t mean throwing your business into chaos. Modern, forward-thinking employers get that flexible work arrangements are increasingly important. You can even work with employees on possibilities. In doing so, you may find that some suggestions are easy to implement, like making minor adjustments to start or end times. Old fashioned, rigid approaches imposing a standard ‘9-5’ day are ‘out’ for many employees.

  1. Recognition

Who wants to work without being recognised? Employees want managers who openly recognise a job well done and have measures in place for this. This can include basic thank you emails through to early marks, a lunch out, gift vouchers or more. Smart employers work with employees on how they want to be recognised, instead of deciding for them.

  1. Regular feedback

Employees don’t want to plod along not knowing how they’re performing. Many aren’t content to just find out about their performance once a year at an annual review. You’ll want to think of formal and informal ways to provide regular feedback, so your employees understand how to improve.

  1. Benefits

Many employees are motivated to stay with a business because of the extra benefits they receive. Smart employers work with employees on the benefits they want to receive. Here are some work perks employees will love.

  1. Location

Some employees decide on one job over another because of office location. This isn’t necessarily something you can control, but you can figure out if this is a deciding factor and think creatively about how to address the issue. Many options are available. Perhaps it’s extra compensation for working in a remote area. Or flexible start times that help employees deal with heavy traffic. Or additional funds to cover stiff parking fees in inner city location. You can work with employees on solutions, to motivate them to stay.

  1. Remuneration

Employees expect a pay check that’s fair and reasonable. Money isn’t always their #1 motivator. Be innovative and factor this into retention plans. As a minimum, you should remember that, at a minimum, most employees expect an annual Consumer Price Index rise in pay. This may be difficult for some employers in 2020. If this is the case, think laterally about what you can offer that employees will consider a greater benefit. Speak to them, explain the situation and together come up with a solution.

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Why candidate experience is important

Employers: 6 reasons staff will stay or leave