Finding and holding on to employees has always been a challenge in the logistics industry, but with the lowest unemployment levels in decades and tougher post-Brexit immigration rules, this has leapt up the priority list. Dave Morris, Operations Director at Vitesse explores what questions to ask when formulating a staff retention strategy and explains how Vitesse can play a vital part in keeping your workforce happy.
People are key assets in all businesses, so the critical shortage of labour has prompted warehouse operators – particularly larger employers – to focus on how best to attract, and then retain employees.
Many businesses are considering investments in automation as a solution to the challenge in retaining and attracting staff, not necessarily to reduce the cost to serve, but as a risk mitigator to continue to deliver the service their customers demand.
Of course, attracting and retaining staff has a lot to do with paying a fair wage that is competitive for the area the warehouse is located, but beyond pay the working environment and atmosphere has often been cited as an equally important, if not more important factor. For example, first line managers looking after their teams and helping them solve any problems arising, so that they feel supported.
Having committed, properly trained and well supported staff is key for managers in meeting the daily challenge of achieving agreed service levels with volatile volumes. Indeed, it makes the challenge more deliverable and even enjoyable.
The opposite scenario makes life tough for everyone. A first line manager faced with a churning workforce and constant new team members, will be under pressure to carry out induction training, taking core team members off key tasks to help newcomers and creating a hurdle to performance.
Constantly losing and replacing workers interferes with momentum and puts service levels at risk, while increasing the cost to serve.
So, here are a few questions to ask when devising an effective staff retention strategy:
- Is an employee’s performance evaluated accurately and fairly?
- Who is setting the benchmark and how is it set?
- What data is being used, where does it come from and is it reliable?
- How is feedback given and is it both fair and balanced?
- How is consistent performance rewarded?
- How are inconsistent performers helped to find their level?
- How is overachievement rewarded and encouraged?
Vitesse software helps employers to evaluate and measure employees’ performance in a fair and unbiased manner, enabling them to recognise and reward employees. This ‘fair playing field’ helps to create a stable and positive working environment and forms the foundation for a thriving retention strategy that can become a cornerstone of operational excellence.
Get in touch to find out more about Vitesse and how we can help you create a fair working environment, foster positive attitudes and optimise performance.