The key factors for attracting and retaining talent

6 months ago by Daniel Stargatt
The key factors for attracting and retaining talent

Over the past year we have been on a journey as a business to help improve what we offer our people, with a view to improving attraction and retention of talent. Based on the journey we have been on and the changes we made, we wanted to share with you what factors we focussed on.

Before we made any decisions on what we felt needed to improve, we reached out to the the people we were actually changing for… our people! We did this through an anonymous survey, not because our people feel uncomfortable about raising concerns, but because we wanted outright honesty to ensure we focused on changing the right things.

After gathering the feedback we could clearly see a pattern emerging that showed that a more flexible approach to working hours was needed to help support personal commitments and improve work/life balance. The main changes we made were offering flexible working hours, a 3pm finish on a Friday and we also made our rewards more tailored to individuals rather than one fits all. Since making the changes we have seen a huge increase in our retention rates as our people are happier and more engaged in the business than ever before… great!!

There are so many things you can do as an employer to help attract and retain talent, but in this article we have looked at 4 key areas we suggest you focus on based on our experience with both our employees and the conversations we have with candidates and the reasons for them wanting to leave their current role…

Company culture

Your company culture is possibly the most important factor in keeping people happy, healthy and engaged. Your company culture is, in simple terms, your company’s personality and essentially defines the environment your employees work in. Company culture is built up by multiple elements that create a picture of who you are and what you stand for, such as your values, mission, ethics, goals and expectations.  Company cultures are not improved overnight, but it will be absolutely worthwhile.

Company culture is a huge factor in helping make candidate’s minds up on if they want to join your business and for employees deciding on if they want to stay, so take the time to see how you can improve, change or even just communicate what you do better.

Challenging work

We appreciate that when it comes to any role there will be set things that need to be done to fulfil the role. However, it’s important that you challenge your employees to help expose them to new experiences, new responsibilities and to help them develop and progress in their career. Not allowing your employees to express themselves and utilise their skills on a regular basis will lead to a decrease in job satisfaction and engagement.

Constant communication is the key here, as this will help you to ensure your employees are happy, challenged and motivated, and if you come across an employee that isn’t then you can address it before they lose their motivation and become disengaged.

Improve work/life balance

This is one of the most talked about areas for a business, and one you just can’t hide away from. We are seeing an increasing number of candidates asking about how companies help to achieve a healthy work/life balance, so if this isn’t at the top of your list as a business then you could struggle to attract and retain top talent.

Offering a healthy work/life balance is key to helping your employees manage their work and personal life, such as being able to attend clubs they’re apart of, have quality family time and managing child care. Being flexible is the key here, and by offering flexibility you will increase people’s want to achieve more as they feel fully supported, happy, healthy and engaged in your business.

Reward and recognition

Lastly, reward and recognition. People want to feel valued by their business and by making sure you are offering rewards that are in-line with the current market and recognising people’s successes you won’t go too far wrong, as employees will feel valued and motivated to achieve.

We wrote an article specifically about the benefits of employee recognition


We appreciate that it is far easier for smaller businesses to change some of the areas discussed above, as they can be more agile in decision making and implementation, with less red tape etc, but if you don’t address it, it will be a constant barrier to attracting and retaining talent.

If you are open to making changes don’t be scared to ask the people in your business what they value from an employer. Engaging them in helping to carve what your business offers is a great way to help make them feel a part of your business and ultimately leads to knowing what it is that actually needs to change.

Want more advice on what candidates are looking for?

If you want to find out more about what candidates are looking for, what questions they are asking when searching for new opportunities then get in touch with us. It’s far easier to know what to change when you know what people actually want from their job and the company they work for.

Looking to recruit?

If you are looking to recruit for your team then get in touch with us and we will help you get the right people for your business.

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