When and Why Do the Members of Your Manager’s Team Go Job Hunting?

So, my thirtieth high school reunion is coming up in a couple of weeks.  It’s time, at the ripe old age of 48, to review my life, think about what I’ve accomplished, and yes, compare myself (with some level of anguish) to my fellow high school classmates.

It’s enough to drive me out to Indeed.com.

Jump ShipI just read a pretty benign article on Forbes.com called Ten Unmistakable Signs Your Employees are Job Hunting, and the list is kind of laughable.  If your team members are suddenly interested in project completion dates, or going out to lunch with co-workers they never spared two words for, then they might be looking for other employment.  But, come on, that’s an expensive guessing game.  Attrition costs companies a huge amount of money, and that’s why they’re applying a certain level of big-brother technology to help identify those who might be about to jump ship.  And when.

Sure, employees still jump ship because they don’t like their bosses, because they were offered better jobs with higher pay, and so on.  But CEB (now acquired by Gartner) determined that there’s a “when” factor in job hunting as well.  In the September 2016 Harvard Business Review article “Why People Quit Their Jobs,” CEB HR practice leader Brian Knopp suggests that any event that encourages an employee to compare him- or herself to peers is incentive for job hunting.  In fact their studies show that:

  • Job hunting increases between 6% and 9% when employees reach a work anniversary
  • Job hunting jumps 12% just before birthdays (milestone birthdays, in particular)
  • Job hunting increases 16% when an employee has a reunion

Some companies are also examining when employees are badge-swiping in and out to determine if it’s possible they’re interviewing outside the company.  Other companies are examining their employees’ use of social media.  For instance, if an employee uses his cell phone to follow that LinkedIn message that says, “These ten employers are looking for someone with your skills!” his name could get added to the short list of people possibly looking to leave the company.

As a Revolutionary Assistant, you have the ability to help your manager get ahead of this attrition issue, particularly where life circumstances are concerned.  A member of your manager’s team isn’t hitting a milestone birthday without you knowing it, let’s face it.  Work anniversaries are easy to get your hands on, and the celebrations you plan around them have just become more meaningful than ever.  Now, you can take that a step further and schedule some “career discussion” time between your manager and that employee, to make sure everyone’s on the same page and that employee is growing with the company in the way he or she wants to.

Another interesting thing the article mentioned was the approach Credit Suisse decided to take for this issue.  Their recruiting department took to cold-calling their own employees about job openings they might be interested in.  By doing so, they reduced their 2014 attrition by 1%, which saved their company millions of dollars.  A program worth looking into?  Bring it up to your manager and see what she thinks!

Getting ahead of employee intent to leave is better than trying to make a counter offer when the employee has another fish on the line.  In fact in 50% of all cases where a counter offer is accepted, the employee makes a decision to leave within 12 months, anyway.  So help your manager manage attrition just a little bit better with these revolutionary facts and an action plan.


Next Post:  Wednesday, November 1

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