When it comes to employee retention, some companies know no bounds. Yes, it’s true that losing an employee can cost anywhere from 1.5 to greater than 2 times the salary of the employee, but paying for your employees laundry, having sleeping pods in the office, is this maybe going a little too far? Some of these radical ideas seem like they can become costly business expenses, or even may harm he culture of your company, but does that outweigh losing one of your star employees? Check out this list below for some of the more creative employee retention strategies, and you can decide if some of these ideas might be too over the top, or just right for you.
Creative Employee Retention Strategies
I could write pages on all of the crazy stuff Google has on their campus, such as sleeping pods, free cars, free bikes, an ergonomic center, but that topic is a little played out. Instead take a look at Gymboree. To help reenergize their employees and to keep them from getting hit with a major case of the sleepies, they give their employees an opportunity to “celebrate their childhood.” On wednesdays, they provide 20 minute snack breaks where all of the employees congregate in a central area and literally just hang out and eat some snacks with each other. On thursdays, Gymboree offers a 20 minute recess, where employees go outside where they can play hopscotch, etc. and just take some time to relax and talk to one another. Gymboree’s goal, to get their employees to take some time to get outside of work and build a sense of teamness, and just talk and get some fresh air.
Don’t you hate doing laundry?
With only a .5% turnover rate, Wilton Conner Packaging Company must be doing something right. Don’t you just hate when you have to go home after a long day of work and do your laundry? Wilton Conner happens to employ a team of laundresses, allowing employees to bring in all of their laundry and get it done for $1. The clothes are then washed, dried, folded and packaged for the employees to take home by the end of the day. If that’s not enough, when the maintenance employees aren’t busy at work, they hop into a company car and travel to your house if you need minor repairs done, at only the cost of materials.
Forced Vacations… What a bummer!
In Beverly Hills California, there is a software company called Motek. Every year, each employee is give an entire month off with pay, and also gives them a whopping $5,000. However, the catch is they have to use it on airlines, cruises, hotels and other travel expenses. The $5,000 is earned each week an employee works, with $100 being deposited into their vacation fund. If this sounds like your type of work perk, get in line. Motek experiences practically no turnover… I wonder why.
Childcare is one of the biggest challenges that workers and especially working moms face. BankBoston has jumped on this sleigh and provided childcare for all 16,000 employees, which is especially awesome when you figure that a few snow days are more or less guaranteed. Employees appreciate this small gesture, and BankBoston gets to keep their employees from having to take the day off work. Sounds like a good trade off to me.
An Endless List of Creative Retention Strategies
These are just four examples of some creative employee retention ideas. You can easily find hundreds of more examples out there, but the best companies around understand their employees needs and what will keep them happy. Sure, you may not need come up with some wacky scheme to keep them from leaving, but sometimes the more creative you get the more they appreciate it. Bottom line, you need to do something to keep from losing your star employees, are you sure you’re doing enough?