Benefits and Compensation, Talent

More Money Won’t Necessarily Make Unhappy Workers Stay

If your workers are unhappy in their current roles, throwing more money at them won’t make them stay, say 55% of respondents in a new research report released by Korn Ferry.


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Retaining workers sounds like a job that’s better suited for HR professionals than recruiters. However, understanding why workers stay with your company will allow you to better sell your company to potential new hires. According to new research by Korn Ferry, 51% of respondents say that 10% or less of all new hires leave a company within the first 6 months of being hired.
For 44% of respondents, they claim the most common excuse new hires use for leaving is that the role he or she was hired for isn’t what they expected when they went through the hiring process. Other reasons include:
  • Working for the company is not as presented during the hiring process—17%.
  • They don’t see a path for advancement—14%.
  • They don’t like their boss—7%.
  • Their skills and talents are not being fully utilized—11%.
  • They want more money—8%.

While 8% of respondents say new hires leave for more money, 55% of respondents say that offering more money to new hires won’t actually get them to stay with your company. Unsurprisingly, 74% of respondents in the Korn Ferry research say that even if their new role wasn’t a good fit, they would stick it out until they found something better.
For roles that paid well, 82% of respondents said if it wasn’t a good fit, they would stick it out until they found something better, while 15% of respondents say they would remain in the position in the hopes that it would get better.
If more money doesn’t entice workers to stay, how do you retain top talent? According to Korn Ferry, 70% of respondents say that the challenging and/or rewording work they do is the sole reason why they stick around. Other reasons include:

  • Pay/benefits—9%
  • Coworkers—3%
  • Reputation of the organization—2%
  • Clear advancement path—16%

In a recent Recruiting Daily Advisor article, Paula Santonocito touched on the different ways to retain your workforce, which include:

  • Offering additional benefits, such as an extra week of vacation, a flexible schedule, or the ability to work from home.
  • Creating a new role. If you’re unable to promote the worker to a new role, you could always create a new one specifically for him or her. Santonocito says, however, that the new position should include greater responsibility and a new title. It should also be in keeping with the department and company structure.

The Korn Ferry survey of professionals took place in May 2018 and garnered 361 responses. For more information, click here.

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