GNcareers, from Gulf News

Employers need to improve staff retention

Employers need to improve staff retentionImage Credit: Supplied

Many companies in the Middle East may be doing well these days, but they need to seriously work on their employee retention and talent management strategies to slow down turnover rates and keep their staff more satisfied, human resources (HR) specialists told Gulf News.

The latest Global Career Satisfaction survey by eFinancialCareers, which polled professionals in the finance sector, indicated that resignations may be on the rise soon with more than half (53 per cent) of the respondents in the Middle East now actively looking for a new job, more than any other job market.

A quarter of those looking to quit their current jobs (25 per cent) said the lack of career progression has prompted them to explore other opportunities, while 9 per cent attributed their discontent to their level of compensation.

James Randall, sales manager of eFinancialCareers Gulf, said it is likely that many professionals, especially those in the finance sector, are unhappy that the financial rewards they have received for the year failed to meet expectations.

Talent management

''Additionally, good talent management appears to be lacking across the region. Another reason could also be ineffective communication about changes in the company to the employees which in turn affects their morale and satisfaction in their current job,'' Randall told Gulf News.

The survey, which polled nearly 9,000 respondents in the United Kingdom, United States, Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, France, Germany and the Middle East between April and May 2014, found that finance employees in the region are among the most burnt out in the world.

Nearly two in ten (19 per cent) said they feel totally exhausted at work, one of the highest and just behind France (20 per cent). Job satisfaction ratings in the Middle East (61 per cent) are lagging behind other markets, such as the UK and Australia, where 77 per cent of the surveyed workers said they are enjoying their workplace.

It appears that employee-manager relationship also plays an important role in staff retention. The study found that among those who are not actively looking for a new job, 19 per cent said their relationship with their line manager keeps them satisfied.

Lack of career progression

''A quarter says the lack of career progression triggered their decision to change employer. It clearly puts the onus on managers and HR professionals to communicate with staff. Even more so as our research reveals that over half of them do not have regular meetings with their line manager,'' said James Bennett, global managing director of EfinancialCareers.

It is, therefore, critical that employers maintain an ''open door'' policy to help foster a good relationship between the employee and the manager. ''Communication should be the key factor. Retention strategies vary with business, but aspects that need to be addressed while formulating them are working environment, employee relationship, employee support, employee growth and finally but definitely compensation,'' Randall said.

Source: Cleofe Maceda, Senior Reporter,