A Toolkit for Retaining Great Employees

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Are you giving your best employees good reasons to stay at your organization? Retaining employees comes down to giving great employees a good reason to stay at your workplace over and over again, especially when they have another opportunity on the table.

Over the years, ERC has conducted a large amount of research on what makes great talent stay at their organizations and has found that retention typically boils down to four (4) key factors: relationship with the manager, challenging work/learning opportunities, a great work environment, and compensation/rewards. Based on these factors, we've developed a toolkit of checklists to help you retain great employees.
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New Graduate and Intern Compensation Trends

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The 2013 ERC/NOCHE Intern & Recent Graduate Pay Rates & Practices Survey, conducted annually through a partnership between the Northeast Ohio Council on Higher Education (NOCHE) and ERC, reports that 57% of the organizations surveyed have a formal internship program in place. In addition, the same proportion of respondents are either in the process of hiring or are planning to hire new college graduates in 2013. This strong connection between the area’s higher education institutions and local employers also seems to be translating into positive compensation trends for many interns and new graduates, particularly in highly technical fields of study such as engineering.

Compensating Interns

Although there is still some debate over paid versus unpaid internships, the 2013 survey indicates that the vast majority of internships are paid. In fact, after stagnating from 2011 to 2012, the average hourly pay rate for interns across all fields of study saw an increase of nearly one dollar in 2013. While certain fields saw larger increases than others. For example, engineering interns are making more than interns working in the non-profit sector- but these differences were largely unsurprising and fall largely in line with overall compensation trends for their respective industries more generally.
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11 Easy Ways to Create a Memorable First Day for New-Hires

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Organizations only have one chance to make a great first impression with their new-hires - on their first day. A new employee's first day is the most critical day of on-boarding. It leaves a lasting impression that should be both positive and memorable.

Creating a memorable first day for your new-hires doesn’t require an overly elaborate on-boarding program, but it should avoid the common mistakes and issues that plague many on-boarding experiences and lead to poor first impressions including lack of preparation and support, poor training, information/training overload, and failing to provide a warm welcome.

Here are 11 easy ways to create a positive and memorable experience for your new-hires on their first day.
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Even More Reasons to Hire Interns & Recent Grads

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According to the 2013 ERC/NOCHE Intern & Recent Graduate Pay Rates & Practices Survey 85% of employers with internship programs in place indicated that they will be either maintaining or expanding their programs in 2013. Organizations also report that 48% of their entry-level positions are filled using new college graduates. These numbers clearly demonstrate an ongoing commitment by Northeast Ohio organizations to building strong internship programs and bringing young graduates into their workforces. However, this year’s survey also reveals some unexpected opportunities and perks that further bolster the importance of hiring interns and recent grads from more of an organizational development perspective.

Building Networks

Employers looking to hire interns or recent graduates continue to collaborate closely with colleges and universities in the area, most often using the job boards at colleges and universities themselves. This strong connection between the area’s higher education institutions and local employers is also thriving on a more personal level with 61% of respondents taking time to build relationships with professors in order to find interns and 40% drawing upon their alumni contacts when seeking new college graduates to fill positions at their organization. Despite a strong focus on online recruiting overall, employers still find value in the face-to-face networking opportunities that their connections to colleges and universities provide.
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Social Recruiting: What's Trending Now

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Why is social recruiting such an important topic, and what's the value to your company? Mike Donoghue, the Senior Director of Mobile, Video & Vertical Strategy at Advance Digital (parent company of Cleveland.com), has teamed up with ERC to answer some of our most pressing social recruiting questions.

Trends & Growth

Over the last few years, Mike and his team have seen rapid growth happening on LinkedIn. As the 'brand-safe outlet', as Mike calls it, LinkedIn provides a platform for talent acquisition that does not require a deeper, personal relationship between company and candidate. Although, he also comments that as professionals become more weary of whom they add to their LinkedIn networks, there will be some decline in usage. Platforms like Google+, Twitter, and Facebook will gain popularity as organizations and individuals become more comfortable interacting and begin developing richer profiles.
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9 Things Job Applicants Want from an Employer

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9 Things Job Applicants Want from an Employer

Hiring great people increasingly demands that your organization creates an attractive, easy, engaging, personal, and memorable experience in the hiring process.

Hiring practices either repel or attract the talent you are trying to recruit. From the moment you "touch" job candidates, they take in information about your organization, form opinions of your workplace, and make decisions about whether or not to pursue employment with you. A 2013 study by CareerBuilder shows that candidate experience is linked to whether applicants seek employment at your company again, recommend employment, and even purchase products or services from your organization.
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Schools Popular with Local Employers for Interns and Grads

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Geography

From April 2012 to April 2013, respondents to the 2013 ERC/NOCHE Intern & Recent Graduate Survey have hired interns or recent graduates from well over 100 higher education institutions. Familiar local names such as University of Akron, Kent State University, and Case Western Reserve University top the list at more than 20 organizations each, but a plethora of smaller colleges and out-of-state institutions are also listed.
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Ten Tips to Starting (and Sticking with) an Exercise Routine

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1. Start slowly and add a little more over time

Many people start out by trying to do too much too quickly. If you’re not currently exercising, try to do 10-20 minutes three times per week. Add a few minutes each week to build up to 30 minutes. Next try to add another day.

2. Get someone to join you

You are much less likely to skip a workout if you arrange to do it with someone else.

3. Vary your routine

Decrease your risk of injury and boredom by doing different activities.

4. Make exercise fun

Plan your walking route to see things that interest you. Listen to music, audio books, or watch TV while you exercise.

5. Keep an activity journal

This is a great way to track your progress and hold yourself accountable.

6. Try something new

Not everyone likes the same kind of exercise. Try and find an activity that you enjoy doing.

7. Make exercise a habit

Try to choose a regular time for exercise. Make an appointment with yourself and block it out on your schedule. Research shows that it takes at least three months of doing something to form a habit.

8. Make exercise a priority

Think about your reasons for wanting to become more active. You have to believe something is important in order to make it happen.

9. Knock down your barriers to exercise.

Think about what obstacles have kept you from being active in the past and strategize solutions to solve those problems.

10. Every little bit helps

Try to incorporate more activity into your everyday life. Take a walk at lunch or do errands by bicycle. Take the stairs. Walk to your co-workers desk to communicate.  Play outside with your kids or dog. Work in the yard.

Information provided by Julie W. Allen, M.A., Exercise Physiologist, University Hospitals

6 Simple Ways to Boost Employee Morale

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Low employee morale can edge its way into the office from time and time, but when your workplace loses its vibrancy, lacks energy, and seems to have a noticeably different “feel” over an extended period of time, these are symptoms of an employee morale problem.

When employee morale is low, most employees don’t enjoy coming to work as much as they used to. Job dissatisfaction is more common and employees feel less connected to one another. Employees often miss the old work atmosphere and "the way things used to be." They may be absent more frequently and may not feel as invested in their work. There tends to be more workplace conflict and competition (spoken or unspoken) and less collaboration and teamwork. Eventually, the problem spirals and productivity, performance, and retention also suffer.
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