Step 2: Understand why people quit

17 Aug 22 | Blog

Qlearsite’s Retention Series

Discover the three steps you should take to boost employee retention – from identifying the warning signs and understanding the reasons, to deciding what actions to take.

You’ll learn everything you need to know about employee retention. But more importantly, because every organisation is different, you’ll get practical advice on understanding retention in your workplace. Our platform makes it faster, easier, and more affordable to manage retention effectively.

In the first post, we looked at areas to consider to understand the risk of employee turnover. Now let’s consider why employees leave.


Blog 2

“It’s not you, it’s me”

When it comes to resigning from a job, sometimes that’s true. But more often, it’s at least a combination of an employee’s personal goals and the way the organisation has treated them.

It’s an uncomfortable conversation to have, and not one everyone’s willing to take part in – from your team member feeling awkward, to managers wanting to sweep it under the rug. But one way or another, you need to find the reasons that people quit.

5 common reasons why employees leave their jobs

1. They’ve run out of opportunities

Be honest: in practice, how many employees have grown their careers in your business? It’s not enough to have a detailed learning and development policy, you need to act on it too. That means consistently keeping to review schedules, factoring in individual aspirations and career development goals, and hiring from within.

Why? Because 93% of workers would stay at a business that invested in their career – with a third of resignations made due to having no growth opportunities.

2. Growth has changed everything

This may be a surprising one, but sometimes an organisation’s success can lead to a wave of resignations. Why? Because growth has both intended and unintended consequences on a company’s culture.

From a heavier workload or newly enforced structure, to new positions and an unfamiliar workforce, these changes won’t be welcomed by everyone. So don’t be too surprised if you see turnover spike after a particularly successful year.

3. Your organisation isn’t inclusive

If you’re actively trying to hire diverse candidates, that’s great – at the very least, you likely have good intentions. But if these initiatives aren’t backed up by the creation of an inclusive, equitable workforce, then it’ll only end in people quitting.

That’s because no-one will stay where they feel they aren’t wanted – or recognise that they’re a token hire, without any real intent to make your organisation more representative.

4. Untrained managers are to blame

A big reason people quit? Bad managers. What that looks like can be very different – maybe they’re hopeless at onboarding staff, setting them up for failure, or are generally unsupportive. Either way, it’s cited as one of the top reasons people choose to leave.

Again, it’s not surprising. Managers are the link between employees and the leadership, guiding their day-to-day experiences and career progression. If that relationship isn’t working, nothing will.

5. There’s not enough flexibility

Employee expectations change all the time – and the pandemic was a good example of that, serving as the catalyst for the explosion of remote and hybrid working. The reality is that people want flexible workplaces – and many will leave if you can’t offer that.

It can go beyond where you work too. More and more organisations are introducing flexible hours, holidays, and other elements that will tempt your staff to split.

How to use Qlearsite to understand why people leave (and why they stay)

Every organisation is unique – so while being aware of the common reasons for resignations is useful, that’s not enough. It’s also important to listen to your employees, and see what they’re already telling you about why they want to leave (or why they’re staying).

Our platform can help you with that. By sending our research-led employee surveys (which take just 15 minutes to send), you can get actionable insights – including overall temperature checks, departmental and demographic breakdowns, and language analysis to uncover common concerns.

Here’s a few ways you can understand why people leave, and why they stay:

    • Look retrospectively at previous survey results: after a wave of resignations, take some time to reflect. By reviewing feedback from previous surveys, you can identify any warning signs you missed. If your sales team has seen high turnover, view their results alone – and look at the language analysis for common reasons they weren’t content.

    • Understand and explore any positive feedback: by running another survey, and focusing on the positive feedback, you can understand what you’re doing well and make it a key focus to do more of that. Maybe one department is particularly happy – talk to their managers and help them guide other team leads!

There’s a lot more you can do with our platform. We’ve made it fast and easy to listen insightfully to your teams, so you can tackle issues like retention.


Click here to read the third and last post in the series.

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