Tackling staff turnover in 2018 – Breakfast Round Table

The UK staffing industry has never been so competitive with unemployment at its lowest since 1975, total pay which grew 2.8% in the three months to January 2018 and according to a recent RSA report an estimated 12% increase in UK flexible workers in 2017 (employed staff who work on a shift-by-shift basis), suggesting that minimising staff turnover has never been more important.

Whether it’s in the hospitality, events, office or logistics sector, the time and costs associated with replacing staff is at its highest due to the increase in demand combined with a slower UK workforce growth, meaning tackling staff turnover in 2018 whether for full time or flexible workers, will have a significant impact on a business’s success.

With this in mind, Coople invited staffing leading experts and some highly established UK clients to a breakfast round table at the Sky Garden in London to discuss how each organisation is witnessing and managing staff turnover.  It was a great opportunity for each individual to share their own insights, ideas and initiatives they have developed to tackle their staffing pain points.

The event commenced with an overview of staffing industry trends with Kathleen Henehan from Resolution Foundation and an overview of the gig economy with Adam Pode from Staffing Industry Analyst.

These contributions laid the foundations for our roundtable discussion about the recruitment pain points which impact companies today:

  • Employee turnover rates are crucial when trying to keep a level of consistency in delivery. Evidence from across the OECD suggests that training and progression routes not only builds longer tenure but also firm-level productivity. However, the amount of investment employers are willing to spend on staff given the natural high churn rates is up for debate. A case from one of our clients suggested that with a well-structured onboarding programme combined with some training, they see their staff turnover rates reduced with consistency in the delivery of the service maintained, whilst limiting spend on expensive training days.
  • Getting the balance right in the team structure between the roles and responsibilities of full-time and flexible staff can also lead to improved staff retention. One of Coople’s upmarket restaurant clients explained how on-boarding general managers in multiple locations is key for them. Having clarity on the roles of full-time compared to flexible staff has helped them maximise their workforce’s output.
  • Automating the recruitment process was acknowledged by all present as a key area to drastically reduce time and money spent on finding the right talent during key business hours. The need for a more effective recruitment process, whether internal or external, is particularly evident during peak seasons where businesses are already stretched and need more experienced staff. By embracing a more integrated approach, businesses systematically saw an increase in speed of responsiveness and were able to free up their most valuable resources during peak seasons giving them a competitive advantage.

Tackling staff turnover breakfast roundtable September

With the huge success of the roundtable discussion on how to tackle staff turnover, Coople will be organising a follow up breakfast roundtable in September, where clients will be invited to share and present their own initiatives in more detail as well highlight some of their results, whether good or bad.

Overview of the contributors

Kathleen Henehan 

Kathleen joined the Resolution Foundation in 2017, working on post-16 skills and education. Prior to joining Resolution Foundation, Kathleen worked at Universities UK, where she focused on graduate employment outcomes and learning and teaching policy. She has a PhD in Political Science from the London School of Economics.

Adam Pode

Adam joined SIA in June 2009 with overall responsibility for research for EMEA & Asia-Pac. Since then he has examined and written about the staffing industry from Australia to Zambia. Developed forecasts that the market uses to plan its strategy. Advised numerous companies from around the globe. Calculated the size of the Global Gig Economy, and spoken at numerous industry events.