The five stages of grief — denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance, in the lens of an employer, could be dubbed as an emotionally devastating process especially, when a huge influx of employees have left the company for greener pastures. Being an employer in the age of digital advancements is indeed tough work. In a few taps on their smartphones, employees could access a wide range of job vacancies and apply for them immediately without having any second thoughts.
Then, they’ll proceed to leave the company, encouraging others to follow suit. As a consequence, the employer would have to handle the lack of manpower to execute crucial tasks and rehire new employees, only for the process to repeat itself all over again. Instead of going through the five stages of grief, it is important for employers to focus on improving the quality of their respective workspaces to provide a more conducive working experience for their prospective employees instead.
So, the key step is to identify the reasons towards why your previous employees left your company. With every problem comes a solution, hence another key component would be to detect these reasons at an earlier stage and solve these problems, pronto! So, for starters let’s focus on the possible reasons why your employees are leaving your company.
1) Low compensation
According to a new Pew Research Center survey, a low compensation, or in other words, a low pay, constitutes 63% as to why Americans quit their jobs in 2021. It should be noted that these statistics were noted during the age of a pandemic where Zoom fatigue and frequent backaches were reported worldwide as the entire globe protected themselves from Covid-19 by adapting to a fully digital workplace.
As many businesses suffered a heavy loss in their yearly earnings, it has deeply impacted the daily operations of the companies affected by these devastating losses. As an unintended consequence, many companies resorted to cutting down the pay of their employees to cope up with the losses incurred during the pandemic. These specifically applied to private companies and start-ups. And even if their salaries were not affected, they had various allowances being cut to cater to the company’s budget cuts.
In the eyes of the business owners, avoiding bankruptcy and extreme financial losses is key therefore, they’ve always rationalized these low salaries. But on the logical spectrum of things, what’s a company without it’s employees? Therefore, it’s essential for employers to regularly communicate with their employees regarding the satisfaction rate of the employees towards their current salary.
2) Lack of emphasis on Covid-19 safety precautions
The onset of the pandemic has definitely made everyone extremely cautious of their own health and safety. With disposable face masks and scented hand sanitisers in action, it’s high likely that most individuals would carry on these practices even if the virus becomes eradicated. This is mainly due to the fact that the efforts meant to stop the spread of the virus have also effectively curbed the spread of other respiratory illnesses too.
Covid-19 has ruined the livelihoods of many and incurred millions of lives lost around the globe so, it’s really essential for employees to take good care of their health by consuming Vitamin C tablets, stocking up on face masks and hand sanitisers, practising social distancing and of course — ensuring that their companies prioritize their health and practice adequate Covid-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs). Without these measures in place, it’s less likely that your employees would stay as they might assume that their employer prioritises the company’s profits over the general well-being of the employees.
With that being said, employers could solve this issue by ensuring that the basic health protocols such as wearing a face mask and social distancing are always practiced within the office setting. It’s best to also provide hand sanitizers and implement regular sanitisation efforts such as hiring weekly cleaning services.
3) Lack of mental health support
Mental health support is now a popular tool for individuals to learn healthy coping strategies for their respective mental health issues. Nowadays, therapy is no longer exclusive to those suffering from mental health issues such as depression and anxiety. In fact, many individuals with no mental health issues are seeking the help of mental health practitioners such as therapists, psychologists and psychiatrists, just to talk with someone who’s non-judgemental about their daily problems.
Now, with universities hastening their efforts to provide counselling services for their students, it is highly expected for companies to follow suit in an effort to care for the welfare of the employees working in it. Providing mental health services within the office setting includes hiring an in-office psychologist, be it in a remote office or a physical office.
If the employer refuses to ensure the mental health wellbeing of his or her employees, are being taken care of, it could lead to the employees quitting. These employees would then proceed to work in other companies which provides mental health services for them. A good fix for this dilemma would be to hire an in-office counsellor who oversees the employees’ mental health.
4) Lack of work-life boundaries
With remote employment gaining huge traction from employers across the globe, it has made companies worldwide transform their 100% physical workspace into a hybrid workspace, comprising of both Zoom meetings and physical meet-ups from time to time. Despite it’s ideal flexibility, from a realistic perspective, there could be numerous setbacks ranging from an ineffective task tracking system to even a lack of productivity amongst workers in a remote setting.
However, the biggest setback with a remote or hybrid work setting would be the lack of boundaries set whilst the employees are working from home. As an employer, it might be tempting to text your employees at 9pm for an “urgent” task, just because they’re based at home but, it’s highly unlikely that your employees might be happy about this. Just like everyone else, your employees have personal life commitments and a vibrant social life to attend to, when they’re not stuck in front of their laptop screens, working their 9 to 5 jobs.
If an employer decides to overwork his or her employees at non-working hours and exhibit a lack of work-life boundaries, this could lead to the employees quitting their jobs in a fit of fury. As an employer, it is generally a good rule to stop all modes of communication with your employees, past working hours unless absolutely necessary.
5) The gender pay gap
In the year 2021, the global gender gap score for wage equality for similar work done by both genders in Malaysia was at a score of 0.75 — where a score of 1 indicated absolute parity and a score of 0 indicated absolute imparity. This leaves Malaysia as one of the countries with the biggest gender pay gap in Southeast Asia. For further context, the gender pay gap refers to the difference in earnings between men and women.
Often regarded as the weaker gender, women are often compensated lesser than their male counterparts due to several factors, which mostly surround the cultural status quo that largely defines a woman’s place within modern-day society. As an employer, it is indeed important to acknowledge the fact that as we’re embracing the fourth wave of feminism, it is extremely crucial for female employees to be given equal opportunities as their male peers. This includes giving an equal pay for female employees who put in the same amount of effort as your male employees.
If an employer decides to discriminate his or her female employees, be sure to anticipate a huge influx of female employees quitting the company in no time. If an employer is unaware of the gender pay gap, it is wise to read up articles and reports regarding the topic of the gender pay gap to ensure a fair pay is given to both genders.
6) Toxic work environment
If there was one issue that could be found everywhere, it would be bullying. Be it in schools, on the road or even within family members, bullying has been a prominent issue that deeply affects its victims both mentally and emotionally. Sadly, even in workplaces, bullying still remains as a huge dilemma especially, for new recruits. The anxiety and emotional turmoil before the first day at work becomes a living nightmare for these new employees as they navigate across a toxic working environment, cladded with harassment and classic office politics.
While this might seem harmless, it shouldn’t be normalized as it stunts the professional and personal growth of the victims. Having a toxic work environment would also give way for the employees affected to suffer from mental health issues such as depression and anxiety. This might put the company’s future at stake as this might hinder fresh graduates from climbing up the professional ladder which subsequently, leads to a high number of new employees leaving the company after gaining a sufficient amount of experience, in search of more lucrative job opportunities.
Employers, as a way of detecting whether their workplace reeks of toxicity, could ensure that all their employees undergo an employee satisfaction survey at the end of every month. This should be done anonymously and each employee has to channel their complaints towards any colleague via that survey. It’s extremely important to keep the results of the survey private and confidential to prevent a breach of trust.
7) Low chance for career growth
Trainings, workshops and tasks with huge responsibilities are supposedly part of the learning curve when it comes to working in a company. It’s basically one of the many key features that employees look forward to when it comes to working in a specific company. These elements would then help these employees build a solid portfolio to either further their studies in a postgraduate course or for future job hunting purposes.
As for employees who might want to remain in the company for a few more years, the lack of chance for career growth might make their tasks repetitive, resulting in a lack of enthusiasm in their work. This might also inhibit their creativity and critical thinking skills to a great extent. As a good way to solve this issue, the employer could resort to providing more training opportunities for his or her employees.
Besides that, it is essential for the employers to give important tasks to their employees instead of micro-managing things. Focus on the growth of your employees, and the company will grow subsequently.
How To Detect The Resignation of Your Employees Early?
When a hard working employee hands in his or her resignation letter abruptly, chances are, that it might be a slap in the face for the employer. It could become a living nightmare watching an employee serve another company, especially that of a rival company. However, if the employer had indeed paid close attention to the tiny details that led to the eventual resignation of the employee, he or she wouldn’t have been this shocked with the turnover of events.
In many instances, employers might overlook these tiny details due to various factors such as stress and pending tasks. But it is vital for them, as employers, to observe and assess these details. As a result of a successful observation, the employer could subsequently prevent the resignation of the employee by having a small chat with the issues being faced.
Hence, here’s a brief guide on how the resignation of their employees could be detected at an early stage.
1) High absenteeism rate
Ever wondered why your highly functioning employee decides to call in sick regularly, citing various reasons such as headaches, backaches and high fever? Well, that employee might probably be simply uninterested in work, and as a direct consequence of this lack of interest, he or she might even be at high risk of handing in that dreaded resignation letter! The same situation applies to employees who take longer breaks or go for vacations regularly.
2) Arrives and leaves work exactly on time
Now, if your employee used to work late hours and arrives early to the office, and now resorts to leaving and arriving on time, it could be a huge sign that he or she is a walking red flag. Topped off with the fact that the particular employee is not taking up extra workload or projects might just indicate a lack of enthusiasm.
3) Takes a long duration of time to respond to work emails or calls
Well, if an employee decides to respond to their work emails and calls at a slower rate, it could be a sign that he or she might be contemplating of leaving. The individual concerned might also communicate less in person. It’s important to not make quick assumptions as the employee might be going through some huge life changes. Again, communication is key!
To sum it up, while losing an employee might be a devastating situation to be in, especially for small businesses and start-ups, it is equivalently important to acknowledge and face the bitter truth as to why the employees have left in the first place. The job scope of an employer extends beyond sitting in a secluded office room, figuring out new ways to develop the company.
Instead, the employer should proactively address and identify his or her employees’ satisfaction via various methods. It might be a difficult task to uphold but in the long run, once an appropriate system to identify the dissatisfaction of the employees is established, it could be beneficial for the growth of the company and the employer could also get a peace of mind with the potential significant decrease of incoming resignation letters.