How To Control Early Attrition

There are many who have debated the true meaning of the term early attrition. Is it, not joining on day 1 (no show), is it the ones who left before training was completed, is it those who left after they were handed over to Ops but within 6 or 12 months – definitions are many, but many a time a company looks at allocating that attrition in the appropriate bucket, rather than looking at the main reason around early attrition. Is it the culture, the expectations mismatch, false promises, poor treatment, incomplete training etc etc. The reasons could be many. The point is to reduce early attrition to ensure longevity of tenure and skills.

In many financial cases, the cost of an attrition has been pegged at anything between $15000 to $45000 depending on the notice period, the cost of a new hire, training, loss in revenue etc. And if you lose even 20 people a year due to early attrition (in my case I am assuming 3 months from joining), this means an easy $300K on the lower scale, not including risk on business, quality and growth.

While there are many ways to curb and stop early attrition, and you are more than free to contact me to discuss and understand the complete spectrum, I want to focus on the element of expectations mismatch. While we would like the Hiring Manager plus HR to be very clear around expectations of role, responsibility, work culture, ethics, etc, many a times these are only words which do not leave an impressionable mark on employees. One way to curb this is to put in processes that ensure 100% compliance around sharing of JD’s and answering questions, and once an employee is selected (or otherwise if your data security rules allow), allow selected or potential employees to visit the office and spend a day within the culture and environment that may be their future. This is like a mini induction, the only difference is that this person has no contract and is not a part of the team …yet.

The potential employee spends a day in your office(to sweeten it also invite their family) understands more about the company, meets people who already do the role, have their questions answered, go on to the Ops floor and interact with employees, speak with HR and Finance, and basically get answers to all their queries beforehand. Once assured that this is the place that they want to work, or not, they have the liberty to continue with their offer or walk away from their offer, with no bad blood between the two parties.

Two things happen here. You have only the ones that like what they see join you, and even if they don’t, they will continue to be your ambassadors to the outside world, and second, if they join, they stay longer and bring a few more along with them.

The point to ponder over is this – is a $300k loss worth it when sessions like these with families, goodies and a lunch would cost 1/5th that amount, and still generate massive amounts of goodwill that does not have a price tag.



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