What are your plans to tackle future attrition?

Some 46% of employees in Europe’s SMEs plan to look for a new job in the next year. That statistic shows a strong change in what employees now look for.

We investigated why more and more staff are thinking about quitting their jobs, and which elements would help them stay. Working with market research institute Opinium, Personio conducted a pan-European study to find out

We discovered some surprising insights – alongside a host of possible solutions for organisations.

Get the insights you need – read our HR study in full.

People Are Planning Job Moves – But Why?

Overall, 90% of HR managers in European SMEs report that their company is experiencing skills shortages, recruitment problems or increased attrition.

But, why? In the last two years, employees have reassessed their values when it comes to where work sits in their life. For example:

  • 71% want more time for their families
  • 71% want more work-life balance
  • 68% want a higher salary

This reinforces the need for companies to not only focus on attracting new talent but also on retaining the talent they already have in the company.

Pete Cooper, Director of People Planning at Personio shares: “​​For employers, the priority shouldn’t just be to stop people leaving, it needs to be about retaining and maintaining a motivated, productive and engaged workforce.”

Here’s Why Employees are Leaving

Remote, hybrid, flexible – working during the pandemic is just as challenging as ever. Some 32% of employees view a stressful work environment as a reason to quit. But, too little praise and poor opportunities are also important push factors.

  • 31% would quit because of a lack of appreciation
  • 30% would quit because of a lack of promotion opportunities

A lack of career development seems to be a particular issue. Some 37% of employees feel the pandemic impacted their careers, while 35% think they have missed a promotion they were entitled to. That can make a significant impact on morale.

It’ll Take More Than Money to Stay

Admittedly, a compensation increase would convince more than half of the employees (54%) to stay with their current company. But, more appreciation is also high on the list (35%), as are a good work-life balance and benefits (30%).

Our study finds that as many as 96% of HR teams make use of retention strategies. For these to be effective, though, a holistic view needs to be taken of employee priorities, potential reasons for leaving and factors that would help retain staff.

Our Chief People Officer, Ross Seychell shares: “Performance discussions not only highlight pull and push factors, they identify frustrated employees and ensure they get the appreciation and opportunities they need.”

How Performance May Create Sticking Power

Great performance management helps employees develop their careers, feel valued within their team and realise their own potential.

However, only 51% of employees feel that appraisals are fair in their company. Our findings also showed that managers have not been giving enough regular feedback.

HR leaders need to make their performance appraisals fair, regular and adjusted to employee needs. Especially when employees work from home and are more disconnected from the office, inclusion is table stakes.

How Your HR Department Can Help

In order to grow sustainably, SMEs need to be proactive to keep their existing talent and attract the best candidates. Your HR function needs to prioritise sustainable talent acquisition and retention.

Ross Seychell explains: “Unless HR teams can be freed up from admin and access a powerful bedrock of data to fuel their strategic decisions, businesses will risk their success.”