Updated: Sep 28
How to Help Your Business Prepare for (and Survive) the Great Resignation
Employees are quitting — in droves.
And some of them have been in their positions for years.
As an employer, watching the Great Resignation unfold is more than a little unnerving.
Why is everyone quitting their jobs, and what can you do to keep your valued employees?
Here we will answer the question, “What is the Great Resignation?” and give you our top tips on how you can effectively navigate this phenomenon and retain your workforce.
Table of Contents
What Is the Great Resignation?
The Great Resignation, aka the Big Quit, is the post-COVID-19 phenomenon of record numbers of employees voluntarily leaving their jobs.
According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the rate of workers walking away from their jobs hit an all-time record of 3% in September 2021.
Why is the Great Resignation Happening?
Why are people quitting their jobs?
The reasons are diverse and include:
Making the switch to remote work
Restructuring of personal values and long-term goals
The desire to find a healthy work-life balance
Wage stagnation; and
A lack of protection in the workplace
Who is Resigning?
The highest resignation rates are among employees who fall between the ages of 30 and 45 years old and who are in the middle of their careers.
Why is this demographic choosing to quit?
There are a few possibilities for their resignations, including:
These workers have reached a level of financial stability where they are willing to risk a midlife change of careers.
The transition to remote positions has given these mid-career employees greater leverage when it comes to securing new employment opportunities.
The pandemic has caused many mid-career employees to rethink their life and work goals.
Which Industries Are Seeing the Highest Number of Resignations?
We’ve answered the question, “Why are so many people quitting their jobs,” but you may be wondering which industries hit the top of the list for resignations.
Healthcare and tech.
It is not surprising when you consider that the workers in both of these industries experienced a huge increase in demand, workloads, and stress due to COVID-19 — the level of which can easily lead straight to employee burnout.
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8 Ways to Bullet-Proof Your Company During the Great Resignation
If you're hoping to make it through the Great Resignation without having to hire team after team of new employees, you are going to need a plan.
Here are our top eight suggestions to get the ball rolling.
#1: Assess the Issue
If you want to put together a plan for minimizing the turnover rate, the first thing you need to do is have a clear picture of the problem and its impact on your business.
You want to determine your turnover rate in light of the employees who voluntarily resign versus those who are temporarily laid off or terminated. This important step will help you see the source of your retention issues more clearly.
Once you have determined your company’s turnover rate, you will want me to look at just how these resignations affect your business metrics.
Does an employee’s departure leave a gaping hole that must be filled by the remaining team members in that department?
Is the amount of time it takes to complete a task or the quality of work you produce negatively affected by the departing employee?
You may be seeing just a small increase in your rate of turnovers.
But if those employees who are leaving your company are highly trained in specific skill sets, the loss of what may seem to be a minimal number of employees could be costing you dearly when it comes to loss of know-how coupled with the cost it takes to hire and train new employees.
By taking a close-up look at these details, you will be able to get a good grasp of the full picture of the ramifications of the resignation of your employees.
#2: Determine the Source
The next step is to go through a detailed data analysis to determine exactly what is causing your staff to resign.
Be prepared to answer some tough questions around such topics as:
Suitability of the individual to the job requirements
Rate of pay
Amount of time between promotions
Size of pay raises
Paid time off
Opportunities for continued training
Length of the workday
Flexibility in scheduling; and
Location of workplace
Taking the time to uncover these details will give you the tools you need to:
Figure out which of your employees may be the most likely to joining in the Great Resignation, and
How you might go about retaining them through using targeted intervention strategies.
#3: Evaluate Your Work Model
It is not hard to see that the post-COVID-19 workplace will look dramatically different from what we knew before the pandemic began.
We live in times that require companies to deviate from a one-size-fits-all business model.
Many companies have decided that their employees will not be returning to the office full-time. Could this work for your business?
Is it possible to give your employees the option to work fully remote or to alternate their working hours between in-office and remote work?
#4: Focus on Retention
The goal is to retain your current employees, but exactly how is that done?
One way is to focus on creating customized programs aimed at resolving the issues that are the most prevalent in your company's workplace.
#5: Give Raises
According to The New York Times, employee productivity increases when workers are paid more. This is particularly true for those who are employed in high-stress positions that are considered “essential.”
And according to research from Harvard Business Review, when a company gives employees an unexpected pay increase, the workers tend to work at a level that exceeds expectations.
#6: Increase Employee Benefits
An article in Human Resource Executive reveals that …
Paid time off
Paid family leave
Flexibility in working options, including the ability to work remotely
Health and fitness benefits
Financial planning; and
… top the list regarding the employee benefits that workers want most.
#7: Offer More PTO
If you are hoping to remain competitive in the tough job market surrounding the Great Resignation, rethinking how you offer PTO to your employees may be a critical component.
Unused paid time off can result in tired and burned-out employees, which could cost your company plenty of money down the road.
Make sure that you’re offering a competitive PTO policy and encouraging your employees to take time off throughout the year.
Sorbet has a unique approach to PTO, where employees have the option of either:
“Spending” their accrued vacation time in a variety of ways; or
Converting those hours into cash
Not only are employees given exciting options, but using Sorbet means that employers can better forecast their future PTO liabilities.
At Sorbet, we see PTO as an incredible wellness benefit that can (and should) be used as a tool for empowering your employees to take meaningful, planned time away from work so that they can:
Prevent burnout; and
Avoid the pitfalls of the Great Resignation, improve your employees’ work-life balance, and save on your company’s expenses and liabilities with Sorbet.
Successfully Navigate the Great Resignation with Sorbet
How is your business faring during the Great Resignation?
The fact is, we are seeing more and more companies that are unprepared for the unprecedented resignation of a massive number of their employees.
Instead of one person leaving here and there, the Great Resignation has resulted in businesses dealing with three or more people resigning at once.
This increase in resignations is resulting in companies having to hold on to more of their cash flow — companies need to have immediate access to this money to compensate for unused paid time off when the next employee decides to leave the company.
As these numbers continue to increase and more people are leaving their jobs, companies are finding that their cash flow and balance sheets are overwhelmed with the dollar amount they are suddenly having to pay out in PTO.
Sorbet was designed to solve many of the financial issues your business may be encountering, including the Great Resignation.
At Sorbet, we believe that restructuring your PTO will go a long way towards retaining your valued employees.
Sorbet turns old-fashioned PTO systems into a shiny new win-win for employers and employees by:
Giving employees the ability to cash out unused PTO instantly so it doesn’t go to waste
Suggesting pre-approved dates that employees can utilize their PTO; and
Saving employers' money by reducing annual accrued liabilities
If you are interested in saving on expenses and liabilities for your company while improving the work-life balance of your employees, click here to schedule a free demo today.
Want to predict and reduce your employees’ accrued time-off payouts while offering innovative cash-out benefits?
Sorbet’s complimentary Health Check uncovers the economics behind your Paid Time Off Policy ensuring you get a clear picture of actionable data with a simple, guided process. Email email@example.com to get in touch and coordinate your free Health Check.