3 Reasons You're Losing Employees Because of Pay

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In this article, we explore three current and critical compensation problems that cause employers to lose talented employees. These issues include low salary increases, lack of differentiation in pay by performance, and difficulties finding the actual "going rate" for jobs.

Problem 1: Low or modest salary increases

Salary budgets have been lagging for 3-4 years, pay increase budgets are not growing rapidly, and the outlook for significant pay raises is fairly bleak. This means that your employees' salaries probably aren't growing. What happens when the market doesn't match what your employees want? Should you keep your pay practices firmly aligned with the market, or adjust them to what your employees want?
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Book Review: The Three Signs of a Miserable Job

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In “The Three Signs of a Miserable Job,” author Patrick Lencioni writes a fable about a retired CEO who strives to understand what causes misery at work.

Congratulations to the Winners of this month's book contest!

This month's winners are Colleen Bennett, Marlene Hansen, Amanda Peace, Roxanne Putnam, and Marci Kehoe. Congratulations! Stay tuned next month for another contest!

Brian Bailey, a retired CEO, experienced years of success as a leader. Once retired, he finds himself restless and dissatisfied, needing a business problem to fix. One night, Brian and his wife Leslie experience poor customer service at a local restaurant near their retirement home. As an inquisitive problem solver and lover of managing people, Brian begins a quest to determine why this small local restaurant is experiencing poor service, and more importantly, why its employees seem so miserable.
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$30 Million in Training Dollars to be Made Available

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The new Ohio Incumbent Workforce Training Voucher program is scheduled to be announced in the next 30 days. It is expected that $30 million in training dollars will be dispersed between now and the end of June, 2013. It is also expected that the grant will deplete very quickly - grants are awarded on a first come, first serve basis.

ERC's Pete Bednar recently met with the Ohio Department of Development to learn more about the program. In order to secure the funding, an application must be filled out and include course title, the training date(s), and training provider.

If you would like more information or need assistance with your application process, please contact Pete Bednar at 440-947-1293 or pbednar@yourerc.com.

The 5 Most Common Pitfalls of Performance Reviews

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Performance reviews are important tools that managers can use to boost employee performance and productivity to higher levels, but often fall prey to some common mistakes. As your organization prepares to review employee performance in the coming months, we recommend avoiding these 5 pitfalls.

 
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3 Tips for Recognizing Employees

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Consistently, employees say that recognition and appreciation in the workplace matters - that when they feel valued, appreciated, recognized, and rewarded for their contributions, hard work, and results, they are more likely to stay and less likely to leave their organization.

Yet when we conduct employee engagement surveys, we find that rewards and recognition programs are usually some of the weakest initiatives in the workplace. In fact, most employers that we work with struggle with rewards and recognition. They have difficulties defining what to recognize or reward, who to recognize or reward, how to do it fairly, what rewards to offer, how to track results, and how to motivate their leaders and supervisors to recognize their people.

Based on what we know about rewards and recognition programs that work, are effective, and increase employee engagement, here are 3 steps to improve rewards and recognition programs at your organization.
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Training is Key for Hourly Maintenance Workers

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According to the 2012 ERC Wage Survey, with the exception of entry level workers, wages for Machine Maintenance Mechanics in Northeast Ohio fall largely in line with the national dollar figures reported by the 2012-2013 Occupational Outlook Handbook. The national median wage for this job category averaged $21.23 per hour.
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Employers Attempt to Identify Retention Challenges

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When asked “What is the biggest challenge your company faces today?” the most common response by participants in the 2012 ERC/Smart Business Workplace Practices Survey was, “hiring & retaining employees.” To address the first half of this challenge, employers report using recruiting and hiring practices at rates that are fairly consistent with past years. Most organizations check an applicant’s references (90%) and more than half (57%) use some type of psychological testing as part of their selection process. Unsurprisingly, there was a noticeable uptick in the use of technology as a recruiting tool overall, with more employers routinely using tools such as internet job boards (85%) and social networking (52%) to match the right candidate with their organization’s needs.

Determining how these same employers are then “retaining employees” requires a slightly more complex explanation. From compensation and benefits, to employee engagement and communication, to work-life balance and rewards/recognition, each element of an employee’s overall experience at work plays some role in their decision to stay-on with their current employer. One specific factor that contributes to employee retention that is addressed in the 2012 Smart Business Survey is “Training & Development.” 
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How to Inspire & Engage Employees in 6 Easy Ways

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Do you want your employees to work harder? Have a better attitude? Be more productive? Find efficiencies or areas to improve? Show more enthusiasm? Be committed?

It seems that every manager wants these behaviors from their employees, but often believe they need to "fix" or "change" their employees, design elaborate programs, or invest a lot of money in engagement to achieve any results.

The truth is that even though these strategies can help engage employees, using only these tactics will sorely miss the mark. Your front-line managers, on the other hand, are the people that have the largest effect on day-to-day engagement and these outcomes, and the ways in which they do are often cost-free.

Here are 6 easy and cost-free ways that you as a manager can inspire and engage employees to receive the outcomes you want.
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Controlling Costs Through Effective Absence Management

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Controlling Costs Through Effective Absence Management

In an era where concerns about controlling costs is more crucial than ever, managing employee absenteeism is one area where HR departments are empowered to make a real impact on the organization’s bottom line. A cost analysis from a Mercer report entitled The Total Financial Impact of Employee Absences found that the total cost (direct and indirect) of all absence categories (scheduled and unscheduled) averaged 36% of total payroll. The most costly days, the analysis continued, were unscheduled absences- largely attributable to the indirect costs associated with higher rates of lost productivity for these types of absences.

So what are Northeast Ohio employers doing to help minimize what is clearly a large financial burden on employers across the nation? According to the ERC Absence Management Practices Survey, simply recording these absences is the most popular method, with 94% of respondents indicating this basic tracking method is how they manage or control absences. Other top reported methods include “disciplinary actions” (74%) and “using attendance as a performance criterion” (70%).

Interestingly, manufacturers are approximately 30% more likely than non-manufacturers to utilize these more structured measures, which in some cases even have direct ties to rates of compensation. In contrast, non-manufacturers trended towards more forgiving strategies such as “flexible work arrangements” and “paid time-off banks.”

Unsurprisingly, “illness” (88%) is the most common reason for unscheduled absence, with “home/family obligations” and “child-care issues” next in line at 61% and 54% respectively. To combat these issues specifically, 44% of participants reported allocating “family leave” as part of their overall attendance policy and 29% of organizations pointed to “wellness programs”- a key preventative measure to help combat unscheduled absences due to illness at the root of the problem.

Overall, the Absence Management survey reported that the average number of days lost per employee per year due to unscheduled absences is 3.9 days, a number 1.4 days better than the average reported by the Mercer report on the national level.

View ERC's Absence Management Practices Survey Results

This report summarizes the results of ERC’s survey of organizations in Northeast Ohio on practices related to attendance and unscheduled absence.

View the Results

5 Ways to Spot & Develop an Emerging Leader

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5 Ways to Spot & Develop an Emerging Leader

Your emerging leaders are your rising managers and leaders in the making. But how do you spot an emerging leader and then develop them into a leadership role? Picking the right people and training them the right way is essential. That's why we've provided five (5) qualities these talented employees usually embody plus 5 ways to develop them.
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