Male and female colleagues looking happy

Retain Your Talent & Thrive

7 March 2023

It's National Careers Week! Are you in the best postin to appeal to fresh talent? How about retaining the loyal workforce you already have? Read on to discover the best ways to attract, nurture, and retain the best people for your business.

This week is National Careers Week, and although the purpose of NCW is to celebrate and focus on the free career advice available to those still in education, there’s a broader discussion to be had.


For HR professionals, it’s an opportunity to participate in job fairs and put your organisation in front of the workforce of tomorrow. By speaking with those yet to embark on their career journey, you can learn what matters to this next generation of workers, which will help you shape your Employee Value Proposition and Employer Brand.


We can offer some insight on Gen Z from one of our clients, Ian Hodson, Head of Reward/Deputy Director of HR Reward and Benefits at the University of Lincoln. Speaking at EB Live in 2022, Ian shared research highlighting that:


  • 62% of graduates prioritise a work-life balance

  • Graduates see themselves staying with a business for a maximum of 2 years.


Changing careers


Whilst National Careers Week may be geared towards those still in education, employers should also focus on those already part of their business.


The cost-of-living crisis may have overshadowed the Great Resignation, but it hasn’t gone away. The pandemic contributed to 74% of people questioning their job and career choices, but some businesses may only start feeling the impact of those choices today, especially if an employee has undergone external training to support their career move.


Research from Top CV in 2021 found that 30% of those questioned had moved jobs that year, with 34% moving to an entirely different role and industry.


Being happy and fulfilled in their job role is vital to employees, and according to Indeed, 81% of people planning on changing careers are doing so due to being unhappy at work. That same report suggested that 88% of those who had changed jobs were happier for doing so.


Retaining your talent


There will be times when you can’t prevent an employee from wanting a new or different career. People’s wants and needs change as their life evolves. For example, your older generation of workers may have started on a particular career path due to security and then find their passion later in life.


You can’t account for every situation, but there are steps to take to make your organisation a place where people want to stay.


Learning & development


Gallup survey shows 87% of millennials prioritise development and career progression opportunities. Supporting this further, a study on engaging millennials states that 89% believe it’s important to be ‘constantly learning on the job’.


Engaged employees are more likely to stay in their roles, and it’s clear that learning and development and career progression opportunities are essential for millennials (who are likely to represent 75% of the global workforce by 2025).


Changing roles within a business


In addition to progressing along a specific career path, employers must offer employees the chance to move into different areas of the business.


The ONS published an interesting report on job changers and stayers, analysing the difference between employees who change roles within and between organisations. This 2018 report found that 75.4% of job changers moved between companies, with only 24.6% moving within a business.


One reason for the higher number of people moving to a new business is that they are likely to receive a higher pay rate as part of the negotiation process. Whilst this may be a lure for the employee, it’s more expensive for the business, highlighting an additional benefit of recruiting from within.


Career breaks


Whilst pay is important, it’s not the only driver for job seekers and changers. We’ve highlighted the importance of learning opportunities, so let’s look at flexibility.


The Great Resignation has taught us that people are re-evaluating their lives and adapting to new circumstances. Our article on supporting employee carers highlights the growing number of employees juggling their careers with caring for a dependent.


Giving employee carers or those reconsidering what they want from their future the opportunity to take a career break could be the difference between retaining and losing your talent.


According to a LinkedIn survey, 60% of the global workforce has taken a career break, which can be anything from a few months to a year. There’s a lot to consider - the lack of a monthly wage, for instance - but many people, especially those suffering from work fatigue, benefit from taking some time out.


In the UK, we don’t have any laws to oversee a career break, and it’s purely down to an agreement between the employee and employer.


Your Employee Value Proposition (EVP)


Financial remuneration isn’t the only thing of importance. However, your EVP, which along with salary and career development opportunities, includes your employee benefits package, helps encourage your people to build their careers with your business.


“Prove that you care about them even more than you care about winning. Prioritise their wellbeing over short-term revenue goals and stock prices.” Forbes


Your employee benefits package is an opportunity to enhance your EVP while showing your people you’re on their team.


Mental wellbeing benefits


An employee may seek pastures new for reasons beyond your business’s control, and no matter what you can offer them, it may simply be time for them to move on.


However, if an employee needs a break or change due to being in crisis or because of the weight of external circumstances, you can help. Our Employee Assistance Programme includes access to the My Possible Self app and BCAP-accredited counsellors via phone or email, 24/7, 365 days a year. 


You can ensure your people always have somewhere to turn, guaranteeing they’ll receive impartial advice and support when navigating whatever life may bring their way.


Contact our team today for more information on retaining your talent and strengthening your employee benefits offering.