In the field of business, it is no secret that talent retention is vital for organizational growth. No matter what strategy you adopt to ensure success, nothing will work out if you cannot hold on to your best talents and leverage their skills and expertise. Besides, recruiting and retaining new talents is rather time-consuming and expensive. So, if you are doing this over and over again, you are wasting valuable resources of your organization. Not only would this cost you a fortune to keep things up and running, but it could also negatively impact your employees’ morale and productivity.
While this is relevant to every business sector, talent retention is particularly important with regard to field service management. This is one sector that regularly takes on challenging and difficult tasks and solves them on the fly. To achieve this goal, service delivery companies largely depend on individual skills and expertise. So, losing expert technicians is not an option for small service businesses.
Despite the necessity of retaining top talents, field service is one of the major industries affected by high employee turnover. According to reports, the service sector in the USA experiences about a 12% turnover rate in a year’s span. They leave their jobs due to various reasons, which include poor work conditions, insufficient compensation, lack of growth opportunities, and high market competition. However, this could be fatal for small companies.
The impact of high employee turnover is almost common knowledge to any business owner. But where they struggle is in finding an effective strategy to attract and retain top talents in the industry. Most small service companies cannot afford high pay grade or offer lucrative incentives to their field technicians.
So, how can they ensure that skilled workers choose them as employers and continue to work with the organization with motivation? Here are some ideas.
1. Prioritize Potential over Experience
“Candidate must have a college degree with X years of experience”. This is something every job seeker is all too familiar with. They are a pretty standard requirement in any job posting. However, experts have found that even with years of experience, a potential candidate may not have the skill required to do the particular job. Besides, one has to learn ten other skills and unlearn some more to become a perfect fit for the position. Therefore, focus more on potential than experience when hiring new talents. Look for people who have a solid foundation, an eagerness to learn new things, and the ability to translate their newly acquired knowledge into actionable skills. This is important for retention strategy as well, especially regarding promotions.
2. Ensure a Sense of Career Growth
The most common reason for employee turnover in field service is better pay offered by rival organizations, and of course, the assurance of a better work environment. To prevent your employees from switching jobs, therefore, you need to make sure that they see the potential for career growth while working in your organization. Having a comprehensive training program and expert guidance can help you in this regard, where new technicians can look forward to upgrading their skills. Don’t shy away from praising them for their performance, listen to their feedback, and most importantly, include them in your decision-making process where possible. With thee, your employees will feel valued, as such, they have actually accomplished something instead of just laboring away. And in turn, it will make them look forward to contributing more to their jobs and being a part of its future.
3. Stay Up to Date with Latest Technology
Providing a quality work environment is perhaps the biggest challenge in hiring the best talents in the industry. For field service, this is especially relevant. If you choose to carry on your operations with the traditional paper-based methods, you will have a hard time attracting the potential candidates to your organizations while your competitors offer a better working environment aided with advanced digital tools such as mobile apps, field service software, online training guides, etc. to their employees. Besides, if you do not upgrade your technology with time, your existing employees will start looking for better job opportunities for the sheer convenience of advanced technology. This is obvious because no one wants to waste their time working harder than they need to, when they can get the job done more easily and more efficiently with these tools and technology.
4. Spare Your Employees Unnecessary Hassle
Most often than not, employees have to put a lot of effort into trivial managerial tasks that may feel unnecessary and exhausting. This might make the job feel more toilsome and shift the focus from the actual job that they are hired to do. For example, field technicians need to spend a lot of time filling out timesheets, reporting parts and assets used in the job, creating invoices, and so on. The paperwork often feels like extra work. The more you force your employees to do this for you, the more weary of the job they might become. The solution, however, is easy. You need to automate your system with the best field service management software. With the help from this advanced digital tool, your field technicians can ditch the paperwork and do all this extra work with just a click on their own smartphone. In short, if you provide your employees with the convenience of working with technology, it will set you apart from your competitors and make you a preferred choice as an employer in the job market.
5. Create A Strong Brand Value
Perhaps the best way to attract top talents is to build a clean, desired brand image for your company. This way, job seekers will come to you looking for career opportunities rather than searching around for them. To do this, you need to identify the values and mission of your company, so that potential candidates can relate with them. You must put your brand across in a way that candidates feel like this is the right fit for them and this opportunity could add value to their careers. Treat your employees with respect and empathy. Simply put, promote your brand values in a way that makes you a preferred employer over your competitors.
To sum up, you must build and promote your brand as such where employees want to work. But more importantly, build a company where people enjoy working for you. Promote a healthy, constructive, and empathetic organizational culture where people can thrive. Embrace technology to create a faster, convenient, and efficient work environment. Respect your employees’ time, maintain a good work-life balance, and ensure transparency in all levels of your organizations. Most importantly, support both your new and experienced employees in their career growth with the right tools and resources, and you will earn their loyalty as an employer.