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Retaining talent through Covid-19

Covid-19 is having a huge effect on how people work. Social distancing and remote work might be the most obvious examples, but it's definitely not the only one. This is something that employers are going to need to pay attention to as the pattern of employees staying with their current employers may be different than normal during the days of the virus and during the time that comes after. Here's some information on issues related to employee retention during the current days and those to come.


Employee Retention During Covid-19

The current epidemic is creating unique conditions that have unique challenges related to the subject of employee retention. Here are some examples.


Remote Work

During the epidemic, it's more difficult to check in directly with how employees are doing with their work and how they feel about their current position in general. In other words, trips to HR become a lot more complicated and potentially untenable based on potential logistical difficulties. People can't just walk in whenever they want to or whenever they are scheduled anymore.

They could also be unhappy with remote work, or especially with how remote work is handled by your company. The key is to find a method of determining whether this is the case if you want to increase employee retention during COVID.

This method will have to be something that doesn't involve any kind of direct interaction in person, or any kind of observations in persons by trained HR personnel either.


Culture Interruptions

The truth is that having employees work remotely can have a huge effect on the work culture. Unless some alternative method is included in the remote work that a company does, it can be difficult for those same bonds and culture feel to remain in place. If this was a big reason why an employee joined the company in the first place then there could be uncertainty for them in terms of staying around.

Even in cases where people are still working in-person, the changes to how that work is done can be significant. The ability for employees to communicate with each other in both work-related and more casual ways to promote employee morale can be highly limited when everyone has to stand at least 6 feet apart, wear masks, and practice various other safety measures. It's worth noting that this could create a change in employee satisfaction and loyalty since in some cases, it could be a significant change to the normal feel of your business.


Stress Increase

COVID is going to have everyone more nervous and on-edge than normal. As a result, some employees may have more difficulty managing the stress of their jobs on top of the stress that they feel from dealing with COVID-related problems such as contracting the disease themselves or having someone in their family contract it.

This is a situation that wouldn't tend to happen on that same level outside of the COVID era.


Employee Retention Post-COVID

After the COVID virus is over, there are going to be all-new challenges when it comes to retention. Here are a few examples.


Status Quo Changes

The truth is that some employees may get used to the "new status quo" under COVID. This means that they may like working at home, for example. If the pandemic goes on long enough, you may get a situation where employees become comfortable with what they consider to be a new normal.

As a result, when they are expected to go back to the way things were before, this could be a gloomy prospect for them if they enjoyed the environment of a work at home life. This could be a serious problem in terms of retention because a failure to add that kind of flexibility in your company post-COVID, may cause them to search around for a company that does.


A Permanent New Normal

It's also worth pointing out that a post-COVID world may not be the same as the world from before it happened. For example, there may be some changes that some companies adopt as permanent even after the crisis has abated. For example, maybe some companies will insist on masks at work permanently, depending on the sector your company works within.

Perhaps the ramped up cleaning cycles for some restaurants will also remain due to fears of another pandemic down the road even after this one finishes. There could be changes to the companies themselves as well, such as in the numbers of employees and what they do as some companies seek to use more automation.

Whatever the case, these changes could rub some employees the wrong way, indicating the need to pay attention in order to maximize retention.


Retention and Churn-Reduction Options During and After COVID

The key to retention is going to be responding to employees' wants and needs in a competitive way. For example, offering flexibility about work hours and remote work opportunities is going to be an effective method for reducing churn. The added flexibility will help on both ends.

It will both help those who have to work at home now when they are unfamiliar with it since they can increase work-life balance in the face of something strange by working around any difficulties they might have staying home all the time. Plus, it will also help those who get used to working at home who don't want to go back to working in person.

That way, you have the possibility to retain employees who would otherwise head to a different company with work at home options after they realize they like it.


Getting Predictive

One major thing many companies will need throughout the pandemic and beyond is a means of measuring satisfaction that is more efficient and doesn't rely on in-person contact. Examples can include predictive analytics platforms like Manto AI and others, depending on the particular company.

These tools can monitor employees continually and help to identify employees who have more of a risk of leaving and why that might be the case. That way, you can have the best chance of understanding where to allocate resources to keep employees where they are.

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