The shockwaves from the “Great Resignation” are continuing to reverberate throughout almost every industry, with 20 percent of workers in the UK expected to leave their jobs within the next year,  argues Dan Schiappa.

This, coupled with unprecedented labour shortages across a range of industries, has led to many organisations to consider how they are going to navigate these challenges going forwards. How can businesses recruit and retain the right skills talent, when labour pools are hyper competitive, and jobs are going unfilled for months? How can they foster and grow the people they already have in their ranks to defy dissatisfaction, burnout, and increasing turnover?

While there is no silver-bullet, one-size-fits-all solution to this mass exodus of workers, there are cultural concepts businesses can put into practice if they are to recruit and retain talent in the months and years ahead.


Create a shared sense of purpose

Front-line employees, managers, and leaders must feel aligned and connected to a company’s culture-no matter how solid the business strategy. While this is easier said than done, Creating a sense of culture and belonging should begin before an employee begins their day to day work.

It can therefore be helpful to dedicate HR and recruiting resources to create unique, immersive, and engaging onboarding experience for all new employees. Regular and purposeful connections among employees—new and established— should be programmed into the experience over time so that businesses can continue to reinforce their cultural values in the long-term.


Support internal mobility

Throughout the course of the pandemic people’s expectations, goals, and motivators have changed, meaning they may be better suited for a different role in the company. What typically would have been a pathway to turnover is another great opportunity to stand out and make efforts to retain talent. The key is having an open, honest, and transparent conversation between employees and managers about what’s working and what’s not.

Then, they must work together on identifying where they may be a better fit and developing a transition plan. This level of transparency, trust, and cooperation will leave a lasting impression not only on the employee, but also those that interact with that individual. This can go a long way in building a sense of belonging and a shared sense of success.


Promote from within, and often

Another key takeaway from the Great Resignation is that employees can often feel that opportunities for career progression are infrequent and inconsistent. Remote working has removed geographic constraints on many roles, meaning it can be tempting for talented employees to look for roles more suited for them elsewhere. This represents an opportunity for organisations and leaders to make internal progression a cultural norm, and not an exception.

Offering promotions on a yearly or half-year basis is no longer viable when in-demand workers can command higher pay and better benefits in a growing pool of open roles. Don’t be afraid to promote an employee who is already excelling and operating on a higher level, even if this is outside of formal review cycles.

Support a flexible work environment

With just 4 percent of employers expecting workers to return to the office full time, it is clear that remote and hybrid forms of working are here to stay. As a result, recruiting future talent will require accommodating the needs of an increasingly flexible workforce. Of course, not every team at every company can be remote, nor should it be a mandatory option for those who thrive in a traditional office environment.

Rather, developing a flexible working policy that allows employees, when they are able, to pick and choose where they would like to work is a more cohesive and inclusive path to success for all involved. Although this may not work for all departments, leaders must take into account the different needs of each teams in order to make it successful.

While The Great Resignation may have transformed the world of work, it also offers an important opportunity for leaders to step back and assess their culture and values, and consider how these can be established even before a new employee arrives.

From there, being open, honest, and transparent about mobility and career progression can go a long way in fostering strong, sustainable connections with employees-and creating a healthy, supportive working environment in the long-term.


Dan Schiappa is Chief Product Officer at Arctic Wolf.