Wise-up Wednesday from Zane Benefits: 5 easy employee retention ideas to start now

Losing great employees hurts morale and revenue. Learn five easy employee retention tips for your dental practice.

Content Dam Diq Online Articles 2015 06 Employee Retention 1

Most dental practices, even the small ones, have a strategy for recruiting and hiring employees. But once a team member is hired, how do you keep the person from jumping ship? As our workforce becomes increasingly mobile, a thoughtful and intentional employee retention strategy becomes just as important as recruitment, if not more so.

An employee retention strategy does not need to be complicated, time-consuming, or expensive. Here are five easy employee retention tips your dental practice can start today.

Employee Retention1. Understand why employee retention matters
As we know too well, frequent voluntary turnover has a negative impact on employee morale, productivity, and revenue. Just how much impact does it have on revenue? The cost of losing an employee is high, from 16% of annual salary for entry-level jobs to over 200% of annual salary for highly educated positions. Yet, your practice can impact employee turnover cost through simple and intentional employee retention activities.

2. Measure and track your employee retention rate
Before you implement employee retention activities, it’s good to know your practice’s current employee retention rate and track it over time. The formula is simple. Divide the number of employees who left during a period of time by the total number of employees at the end of that period to get the percentage. By tracking employee retention rates, you have a baseline, and you have a way to measure the effectiveness of new HR initiatives such as an onboarding program or health benefits.

3. Identify the benefits and perks that your employees value

One way to help retain employees is to offer benefits and perks. But before you invest in new programs or benefits, ask employees what they value. For example, they may already have health insurance coverage and would value a health insurance reimbursement program over traditional coverage options. Or maybe employees would value the option to take a longer lunch in order to work out or run errands, as long as they help each other coordinate office coverage. The point here is to ask employees what they want, and then listen to them. This will help you invest your dollars strategically.

4. Set clear employee goals and expectations
According to Gallup Management Journal, only 29% of employees are actively engaged at their jobs, 54% are not engaged, and 17% are actively disengaged. The less engaged they are, the more likely that the good employees will jump ship. The solution? Set clear goals with employees. Make sure they know what is expected from them daily, quarterly, and annually. Also give employees goals, and put those goals in writing. Make sure each employee reviews the goals regularly, and support employees in reaching them.

5. Create a positive culture
The last tip for employee retention is to create and maintain a positive company culture. There are many things you can do to create a positive company culture, and not all of them cost money. First, what is your culture “temperature?” Do employees feel like it’s a positive and supportive place to work? Or does your culture need a tune-up?

Take these simple steps to improve or sustain a positive culture:

  • Document your dental practice’s values and vision
  • Hire employees that fit your culture
  • Match your physical workspace to your vision
  • Be open and honest with employees and patients
  • Get your leaders on board
  • Listen to employees and patients
  • Constantly communicate culture
  • Create bonding rituals (i.e., team building activities)

Conclusion
Losing great employees hurts morale and revenue. As your dental practices looks at ways to reduce employee turnover, try incorporating these five simple employee retention tips to keep your valued employees happy, loyal, and productive.

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Wise-up Wednesday is presented bi-monthly from the experts at Zane Benefits. One Wednesday a month features Human Resource issues, and the other Wednesday discusses health benefits. Want more HR tips for your dental practice? For more HR tips for dental practices download Zane Benefits’ complimentary guide, “The Dental Practice's Guide to Human Resources.

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