Retaining Talent in Today’s Market

Everyone remembers their first day of school and the stomach-fluttering uncertainty that comes with meeting new people in a new place. This uncertainty is also true for new hires, especially temporary employees who wish to acclimate to their new company culture. If employees do not feel they or their contributions are valued, they have less motivation to seek or accept a permanent position if one becomes available. With the current shortage of available talent, retaining quality employees has taken on a new level of importance.

A positive introduction encourages employees to feel valued and confident. Survey results from illustrate that companies who spend time onboarding new hires retain 91 percent of their 1st year workers. If an employer wishes to continue relationships with these workers, they must encourage them to feel part of the “team.” The following three methods will motivate new or contingent employees to wish to remain with your company.

Quality Onboarding

Onboarding should provide value to your employees. Invest time and resources in a new hire orientation tailored to fit the needs and unique feel of your company. Provide slides or a speaker from each department to explain his or her company role. If an employee feels they are worth time and effort, they often become more productive in their work and confident in their abilities.


Schools often assign an upperclassman mentor to an incoming student. The same should go for the workforce. What makes an employee feel comfortable and valued? A handbook and empty desk/work space, or an engaging and helpful mentor familiar with the company culture? Cultivate a list of current employees whose personalities and work experience allow them to serve as strong potential mentors.

On-the job training

New hire training should be comprehensive and continuous. On-the-job training is proven to boast high effectivity, especially for those who learn well through “doing.” For example, if a new hire must utilize specific computer programs, offer training exercises they can practice independently to test skill and comfort levels. Include new hires in meetings and phone conferences, as well as staff social events. These invitations increase employee engagement and loyalty through perception and appreciation of their “psychological contract” with the company rather than a solely economic one.

A job description or company reputation may be an initial employee draw, but a culture that supplies mentors, quality onboarding, and proper training can increase retention and satisfaction. Try to remember your first day, week, and month as a new hire. What methods or training empowered you? What techniques could have been improved? Use this insight to bolster your approach to new hires and retain productive and satisfied employees.