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The Great Retention: Has the Dust Started to Settle?

The COVID-19 pandemic and Baby Boomer phaseout became the driving force behind the Great Resignation. More than a fifth of the American workforce left their jobs in 2021. In 2022, employers all over the world are hoping for a break.

Will the Turnover Tsunami finally subside and make way for the Great Retention? As companies are reinventing their hiring and retention strategies, it may happen sooner than later. Even though the pandemic is still active, employers are adjusting to the new "normal."

Let's take a closer look at what to expect from turnover rates in 2022.

The Great Resignation

In 2021, almost 50% of the American working population was looking for a new job. The key reasons behind the Great Resignation included:

  • Workforce burnout – Many employees had to work overtime to compensate for layoffs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Once the initial scare subsided, these people simply ran out of gas and started looking for less stressful employment opportunities.
  • Pent-up quitting demand – Employees who wanted to quit before the pandemic stuck with their jobs simply because the volatile environment turned quitting into a serious risk. Once the new normal kicked in and new positions appeared, these employees rushed to leave their jobs.
  • Smart insights – During the pandemic, employees saw that flexible working hours and a better work-life balance are a reality for many industries. They started looking for flexible employment opportunities and left old positions behind.
  • Better opportunities – The Big Quit coupled with a demand for pandemic-related skills and services created a variety of new positions. Employees seized the opportunity to get higher pay and better working conditions.

While the pandemic fueled the Great Resignation, it was hardly the only reason for the massive exodus. The popular reasons like poor development options, lack of recognition, bad company culture, and lack of career opportunities remained.

Meanwhile, the Baby Boomers who are leaving the workforce initiated a significant talent gap, which other generations are struggling to fill.

The Great Resignation is Here: What We've Learned

The Great Resignation has been around for more than a year. Employers have had sufficient time to draw conclusions.

The Tables Have Turned

Two years ago, employees were working hard to make their resumes as appealing as possible, taking courses, obtaining certifications, sourcing references, and much more. Their demand for good positions was higher than the available supply.

Today, the high number of job openings creates fierce competition among employers. Companies need employees more than employees need them.

Flexibility Became King

In a 2021 survey, 56% of employees cited flexibility as the primary reason to look for a new job. That's even more than higher pay. Companies that don't offer flexible working hours have become outsiders.

Going to the office every day and spending time commuting aren't the only factors that make employees crave flexibility. During the pandemic, they would rather minimize face-to-face contact to avoid possible infection.

Work-Life Balance Needs Attention

Many companies laid off employees during the pandemic, forcing the remaining workforce to fill their roles. This led to burnout and a poorly managed work-life balance. As a result, employers who focus on their staff's well-being score significant points.

From encouraging breaks to offering perks, companies are trying hard to show that they support their employees' work-life balance.

Recruitment and Hiring Must Be Revamped

As the employment playing field is changing so are the hiring and recruitment tactics. To stay competitive during the Great Resignation and beyond, employers must revamp their approach to hiring.

In the fierce fight for top talent, it's imperative to minimize mistakes. A bad hiring decision could cost the company thousands of dollars and months of searching for a new candidate. 

Before the pandemic, top-notch hiring and recruitment tools may have been optional. Today, they are essential and will give you a competitive edge. For example, Crosschq tools can help you with:

Employees understand they are in high demand due to their labor shortage. They are willing to jump from one job to another to find the best option. It's up to your HR team to uncover high-potential candidates, who are willing to dedicate themselves to your company's success.

man working from home

The Great Retention: The Next Step

Thankfully, the Great Resignation can't last forever. As people learn to deal with burnout, find desired employment opportunities, and release the pent-up demand, they start to settle down.

Employers who implement creative tactics to identify and recruit top talent will start focusing on keeping it in place. That's where the Great Retention will come in.

You can start the Great Retention in your company earlier than the rest of the world catches on by adjusting your recruitment, hiring, and retention tactics to the new normal. This includes:

  • Being highly transparent about your company at the hiring stage
  • Implementing and promoting flexibility
  • Boosting your employee engagement practices
  • Sourcing employee feedback regularly (and acting upon it!)
  • Streamlining communication with employees
  • Offering health and well-being-related perks
  • Providing internal growth opportunities
  • Prioritizing company culture

Hoping for the dust to settle without changing your internal practices is out of the question. It's imperative to accept that employees have a wide variety of options and help them see you as an employer of choice.

Kick Off the Great Retention with Crosschq

While the Great Resignation is still in full swing, the Great Retention is becoming a possibility. It's up to employers to adjust their recruitment, hiring, and retention tactics to keep talent from leaving their positions.

As employees become more and more willing to settle down, your internal actions can keep them from looking for new opportunities.

Crosschq offers several effective tools for adjusting your recruitment and hiring practices. Our Recruit, 360, and Analytics solutions can help you kick off the Great Retention before the competition catches on.

Contact us for a free demo today to see how we can help you recruit and retain the best talent.

Debra Carney

by Debra Carney

Director of Marketing

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