Staff retention in nine steps

Celebrate colleagues' success...

As headhunters, we love recruitment. But we also spend a lot of time advising our clients on retention strategies. After all, if you can retain good staff, it saves you recruitment time and expense, builds your reputation as an employer, and will lead to more ‘virtuous’ recruitment – unsolicited approaches from candidates who have heard great things about you.

Here are a few of the key areas which help drive retention. Most can be achieved at minimal cost, but may require some serious attitude changes from within the business.

Recruit ‘stayers’

Your retention strategy starts with who you recruit.

In more experienced staff, it is easy to see who has a tendency to hop around: if someone has had eight jobs in ten years, the chances are that they will get itchy feet soon enough. This can be challenged in interview, but, all things being equal, a candidate with a number of three-to-five year stints might be preferable.

In first or second-jobbers though, this is trickier. When interviewing them, look for (more…)

Lies, damned lies and statistics

Following our blog earlier in the week about the declining influence of print in elections, two sets of figures have come to light which emphasise the trend. But they also lead to some profound questions.

It was widely reported this week that Labour won the social media war, as we had suggested on Monday. The bald numbers look poor for the Tories. Over the course of the six week election period, Jeremy Corbyn posted 925 messages on his official social media channels, gaining a combined 2.8m shares. Theresa May posted 159 messages, and they were shared a mere 130,000 times – less than 5% of Corbyn’s total.

Corbyn increased his followers on Twitter and Facebook to a combined 2.4m (there is no figure on the overlap between the two audiences, though it is likely to be significant): May manages (more…)

How the media misjudged the 2017 election

Sun front page following the 1992 general election

Sun front page following the 1992 general election

We have written before about the problem the mainstream media has faced in various plebiscites (the last election, Brexit, Trump, etc), but the UK 2017 election results do feel era-defining. It feels like confirmation of the beginning of the end of newspaper influence.

The success of the Brexit campaign, and the national newspapers’ prominent role in driving it, led many commentators – and newspapers themselves – to think “it was [insert name of paper here] wot won it”. In fact, we argued at the time, social media and the legislative restrictions around broadcast media were equally important.

The results from last Thursday, and the lead Labour now has in the polls, more resemble the Trump election than the Brexit campaign. Like Trump, Corbyn was in the ascendancy despite universal hostility in the mainstream press (even the Mirror was negative about him, right up till May announced the snap election). Corbyn’s success came from (more…)

After the Manchester attack – assessing trust, bias, and media responsibility

This time the US media is in trouble for real news. Following the dreadful events in Manchester on Monday evening, the New York Times has published sensitive photographs and documents which, it is feared, might compromise the ongoing investigations into the bombing. The source is said to be from within the US security services – but the question of media responsibility again raises its head.

The NYT has been widely condemned in the British media: yet, as Hacked Off’s Brian Cathcart pointed out in a column last week, mainstream US journalists have in recent times been standard-bearers for the profession, in the face of a lot of pressure from government and commentators. (more…)

How Improbable’s SpatialOS may revolutionise your business

By now, you have probably heard about Improbable, the virtual simulation start-up that raised $502m from Japan’s SoftBank – but what you might not have considered is how its technology could be of interest to your business.

Founded in 2012 by a pair of Cambridge University computer science graduates, Improbable is now valued at more than $1bn thanks to the investment by SoftBank, which represents the largest-ever venture financing round for a private British company.

The business employs 170 computer scientists, engineers and designers who are all attempting to recreate the most detailed version possible of the real world in digital form. (more…)

Wikipedia founder to combat fake news with new website

Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia, has launched a new website to help combat fake news.

The crowd-funded Wikitribune aims to be a “new kind of news platform” that will take the fight to the producers and facilitators of fake news by “bringing journalists and a community of volunteers together”.

Ten journalists will be hired to produce “professional, standards-based journalism that incorporates the radical idea from the world of Wiki – that a community of volunteers can, and will, reliably protect and improve articles”. (more…)

How to save money on recruitment

MTA media headhuntersResearch from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation suggests 42% of employers have raised their levels of pay in order to secure difficult-to-attract staff.

What makes staff difficult-to-attract varies from company to company; but usually it is because the skill set needed is in high demand but low supply (HDLS); because of location issues; or because the company or its sector is simply ‘not sexy’.

These are all valid reasons why your company may struggle to attract the best people. But poor recruitment practices are a much bigger issue. (more…)

BAFTA Games Awards: What’s changed in the last five years?

This month saw the annual BAFTA Games Awards take place with gongs handed out to the great and the good of the gaming industry, but the 2017 ceremony raises a question: were there any games featured that really point us toward the future of the sector?

Five years ago, key BAFTA Games Awards category winners included two side-scrolling platformers, a first-person shooter, a first-person platformer adventure, a side scrolling exploration game and a mobile arcade game.

This year the award includes a side-scrolling platformer, a first-person shooter, a third-person action adventure, a third/first-person exploration game, a first-person exploration adventure, a multiplayer arcade game. (more…)

Vogue’s new editor Edward Enninful will shake up the status quo

Conde Nast announced this week the appointment of the popular and influential Edward Enninful as the new Editor of British Vogue. The response from the fashion and media world has been widespread delight.

Enninful is not only, as New York Times states, “the first male editor of British Vogue since its founding in 1916,” he is also the “first black editor of any edition of Vogue.” (more…)

How do you measure the quality of a candidate?

Everyone agrees that it is important to have the best talent at the top of an organisation.  But how do you ensure that you’re adequately assessing the quality of your candidates throughout the recruitment process?

Over time, the quality of a hire can be measured by the revenue they bring in, the interest their creative work generates, or how they keep customers happy. But what about when they’re sitting opposite you in an interview? What techniques can you use to accurately compare candidates to ensure you’re hiring the right person? (more…)