Top 6 Questions HR Experts Should Ask to Retain Talent

August 24, 20158:02 am3982 views

Do you as a HR expert follow best stay practices in the industry to retain talent? We offer a comprehensive check-list of the top six questions HR professionals should ask the employee at an opportune moment, in case the HR manager understands through predictive learning, the employee’s planning to quit. This will make the employee rethink twice on their decisions, as they call it quits and walk out of the current job, thus impacting your organisation talent pool.

What exactly is Stay Interview?

It’s the opposite of an exit interview, in which you try to determine the factors that led to a worker’s decision to leave your employ. Ideally this type of pre-emptive measure will cut down on the number of talented employees lost.

A stay interview, conducted periodically, is distinct from a performance review. Its basic goal is to determine why the employee continues to work for you, so that you can, within reason, keep those factors alive.

For example, valued employees might say they appreciate working under a particular supervisor who doesn’t micromanage. Assuming that supervisor’s “hands off” methods have worked well overall, that’s a good reason to retain the manager in question and encourage his or her approach. This has been detailed in a recent report by Avitus Group titled, ‘Workplace Stay Interviews – Best Practices’.

Value of Dialogue

In addition, stay interviews are more effective than satisfaction surveys, because they involve dialogue — and, therefore, may produce deeper insights. Whereas a standard survey is generally limited to the written questions at hand, a dialogue allows for a two-way conversation. Once you have considered the questions you want to have answered, you should also prepare those who will conduct the stay interviews.

See: 7 HR Primary Blunders on Employee Retention

Managing Expectations

While most employers worry that a stay interview could backfire by causing unrealistic employee expectations for workers who stick around. But, when handled properly, the interviews generally won’t lead to this. To avoid misunderstandings, specifically train your managers to conduct stay interviews, rather than rely on the same procedures used for other types of interviews. Here are a few guidelines:

  • Select your interviewees, if necessary. However, if time permits, it might be better to interview all employees.
  • Document and discuss the feedback. Occasionally employees will give you some “wish list” items that are currently lacking in their jobs — for example, performance bonuses. Although you can’t fulfil every wish, HR experts can record every suggestion made and be prepared to seriously consider some of them. Otherwise, employees will perceive the stay interview as a hollow gesture.
  • Leave compensation changes out of the conversation. Sometimes during a stay interview an employee might ask for a raise. To prevent confusion and awkwardness, clarify upfront that the purpose of stay interviews isn’t to negotiate compensation changes but to honestly discuss the positives and negatives of each participant’s employment. This doesn’t mean a supervisor and employee couldn’t discuss a raise, but actual changes should generally be associated only with a performance review or specially arranged meeting.
  • Ask the right questions. Questions about working conditions can place HR professionals and the employer in a precarious position. Make sure to ask only right and relevant questions to every employee considering their job function and valued expertise in the company.

The top six questions HR experts should ask employees to retain the talented workforce within a company are:

  1. What factors about your job exhilarate you the most?
  2. If you inherited a pile of money and didn’t have to work, what would you miss about your job and working?
  3. What do you miss about your last job?
  4. What would you like to change in your current job or employer/company?
  5. How would you describe the perfect job for you?
  6. Outside of work, what are you passionate about?

These questions will help HR managers to retain talent without much extra efforts. Stay interviews are proactive approaches by HR experts to facilitate talent retention within the company and make employees who are looking for career advancement prospects outside the current job, to reconsider their decisions if they wish to quit or stay.

Also read: Top 10 Talent Trends Shaping the World of Work and HR in 2015

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