Tips for attracting and engaging employees

There was once a time when salary was considered the biggest driver for employees and was the tactic that any employer wanting to attract, motivate or retain staff would employ. However, recent statistics point to the fact that this has changed; wages is no longer the top attraction as employees look more towards fulfilment in their role.

This is great news for employers at a time where wage rises might be difficult to fulfil, especially with other financial considerations bearing down on businesses, such as the mandatory auto-enrolment of staff into pension schemes. There are ways that employers can engage their employees for a happier workforce that doesn’t have to involve financial remuneration. Here are a few:

Career path and progression – establish a programme for employees that is geared towards their personal goals, which can be set at review meetings. A one-size-fits-all approach is unlikely to be as effective as different people will want different things from their role. Identifying what is important to each individual and helping to devise a plan to help them achieve it will make them feel valued and give them goals to strive for progression;

Training and development – offering appropriate training to develop each employee is a great way to demonstrate and enable progression. This doesn’t need to be accredited training in all cases, as it could be fulfilled in-house;

Encourage creativity – operating a working environment that encourages people to come forward with suggestions and ideas will help creativity flow, which leads to innovation. This works best in an environment where senior management are approachable and have time to listen – perhaps establish a monthly ideas forum where due time and consideration can be given to each suggestion;

Give responsibility freely – when employees feel they can take ownership of something they feel trusted, valued and have a real sense of pride in the outcome. Whether that is being responsible for a company social event such as the Christmas party or being responsible for decisions that can affect the business – it is important for power to be given away for staff to truly feel that their opinion, capability and expertise is important.

Flexible working – it’s never been easier to offer flexible working. The emergence of technology means many people can access information and communicate easily when not at the same site, so offering flexible working opportunities to help people achieve work/life balance is a very valuable offering.

It’s certainly the case that money isn’t everything, and at a time where some sectors are experiencing skills shortages finding ways to attract and engage staff in order to retain them is high on the agenda. Not least because recruitment fees and training costs can be high, so making the most of the investment is crucial.