4 Effective Employees Retention Strategies in Manufacturing

employee retention in manufacturing
Joanie Turmel
December 21 2021

The labour shortage that Canada is currently experiencing does not spare manufacturing companies. To overcome this talent management challenge and guarantee their long-term survival, businesses need to improve their recruitment strategies and focus on employee retention.

While a high salary is an attractive asset, it may not be enough to retain skilled workers over time. But what are we supposed to do to make them stay? How can one effectively retain manufacturing employees?

1. Create a Warm and Welcoming Onboarding Process for Manufacturing Employees

The onboarding process is a critical step following the hiring process and is a significant predictor of employee retention. Therefore, it is in your best interest to have a well-defined but flexible onboarding plan.

The key is to ask questions. Everyone is different — thus, it is necessary to customize your plan based on each person’s preferences and personality so that all your new hires can thrive in their work environment.

By providing the right tools to your new employees before their arrival, you can help reduce any stress and apprehensions the first day may bring. On that account, it has even been stated that a good onboarding plan can increase employee retention rates by up to 40%!

Make Their First Days Matter

Besides, a warm welcome will give employees a sense of ownership and improve their engagement. In this regard, there are many creative ideas to ensure successful onboardingStand out from people in your industry, and don’t be afraid to be bold!

2. Focus on Recognition and Development Opportunities

Your mentorship doesn’t cease when your new employees walk in. Demonstrating to your staff how they contribute to the company’s success is key to worker engagement.

It has been shown that a corporate culture rooted in work recognition is positively correlated with better long-term employee retention. Manufacturing leaders must understand—and apply—this concept.

A recognition strategy in the manufacturing industry can take several forms, ranging from simple positive feedback to fully implementing a rewards program. The main goal is to make recognition an everyday affair.

Investing in career development through workshops and skill development courses is also an option to consider. Nothing shows appreciation more than empowering your employees to grow personally and professionally in a safe work environment.

The best way to find out what your staff members want, value, and dislike about their job is to ask them! On that account, employee satisfaction surveys are an excellent tool to give your employees a voice and improve your HR practices.

3. Build Bonds Between Employees 

Did you know that people satisfied with their work relationships are more likely to stay with the same employer for a more extended period? Nurturing a friendly and dynamic work environment is another fundamental component of workforce retention in the manufacturing sector.

Several strategies can be implemented to promote healthy relationships among your employees and consolidate your team. To this end, valuing teamwork, setting a clear vision and a shared goal, and creating workspaces conducive to social relations are all efficient methods.

Build a Tight-knit Team

Regular team-building activities can also play a significant role in achieving good synergy and cohesion. They are an excellent way to improve communication, boost group dynamics, help break the ice and manage in-house disagreements.

Tightly knit co-workers are an asset to a company. Moreover, bonded employees tend to remain more loyal to the organization: promoting a friendly work environment will most definitely benefit you.

4. Listen to Your Staff Needs and Be Flexible

Due to their characteristics, manufacturing organizations cannot afford the same freedom in creating their weekly work schedules as some other organizations. However, flexibility is still possible (and desirable) to counter absenteeism and promote better workforce retention!

“Despite the framework that may, at first, appear to be more restrictive for these organizations, there are nonetheless many possibilities when we are committed to finding solutions. LG Cloutier is a great example with their openness towards flexible work schedules based on a trusting relationship with their employees. People notice the goodwill and are, in return, committed to ensuring that deliverables and deadlines are met. We may sometimes think it’s impossible, but it becomes achievable when the entire team is brought on board and involved in searching for solutions!”

Marianne Roberge, Partner and Practice Director Employer Branding and Family-Work Balance at Go RH

Work-life Balance is Possible!

It is essential to consider your team members’ availabilities and preferences. By taking your employees’ preferences into account, you show them that they are valuable to you. This is a substantial factor in the work happiness index.

There are many ways to accommodate your staff while keeping your own needs in mind. An efficient option in the manufacturing sector is to use rotating schedules. It allows you to create a consistent work schedule far in advance while varying days off: an optimal combination for work-life balance.

Allowing employees to trade shifts and to apply for available time slots are also strategies to consider. After all, the best work schedule is the one that works for both the employees and the company!

To simplify this scheduling headache, intelligent scheduling software is a great asset for an organization and will help you maximize your time and save money.

Whatever strategy you choose, the simple fact that you are currently looking for ideas to address this priority issue affecting the sector is another step in the right direction. Also, using technological HR solutions for manufacturers can help to simplify the process of HR practices implementation.

To ensure continuous improvement, Folks HR’s employee engagement surveys are designed to make life easier for those who use them by offering easy-to-deploy, 100% confidential and easy-to-analyze surveys.

Discover Folks Surveys

Want to see how Folks Surveys can help you increase employee engagement in the manufacturing sector?

Request your free demo

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