Retain Top Talent With These Employee Retention Strategies

Discover the six most common reasons people leave their job – and strategies you can use to improve these areas of your business.

January 10, 2023
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How would you describe your job to a five year old?
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It’s impossible to build a successful business if you can’t hold on to your best employees.

In fact, studies have shown the top 5% of workers produce a massive 26% of their business’s output. Which means losing just a handful of your top performers can have a huge impact on your company’s bottom line. 

Read on for our pick of the top strategies organizations of all sizes can use to retain their top talent, keep them happy, and help make sure they’re engaged with their work.

What is a retention strategy?

A retention strategy is a plan an organization puts in place to keep the number of employees who quit their jobs as low as possible while boosting employee engagement and wellbeing across the business.

It costs your business 20% of an outgoing employee’s salary to replace them – and even more than that for high earners. Which means solving the retention challenge can have a huge impact on your business’s bottom line.

What’s more, companies with higher turnover rates have lower employee engagement levels. And since organizations with highly engaged workforces outperform their peers by a massive 147% in earnings-per-share, the total cost of high turnover rates seriously add up.

Book a demo of Assembly to get all the tools you need to execute a retention strategy in one place.

What are the most effective retention strategies in 2023?

Want to reduce your company’s staff turnover? Here are the six most common reasons people leave jobs – and the strategies you can start implementing today to help improve these areas of your business and boost your retention rates.

Nail your onboarding process

38% of workers who quit do so in their first year – and two out of three employees who leave in the first year do so in the first six months.

Which goes to show how important the way you welcome new employees can be. 

Despite this, 51% of employees think their onboarding experience was subpar. 

Start things off on the right foot with your new teammates with a new hire survey, which will help set both sides up for success and give you a clear understanding of how your new employee works, thinks, and operates.

Fostering open and honest communication as part of your company culture mix and will also encourage your new hires to open up about any issues they’re facing during one-on-ones and employee pulse surveys

Be flexible

Today, flexible working options are a must for a lot of employees – especially millennials and gen Z.

In fact:

  • 71% of employees open to looking for a job are unhappy with their company’s flexibility.
  • 56% of remote workers would look for a new job if their company mandates a return to the office
  • Flexibility would be the deciding factor between two jobs with identical pay for 75% of workers. 

Expecting your staff to commute to a physical office and sit glued to a desk from nine to five is a surefire way to tank your retention rates in the age of remote working. Instead, consider letting your employees choose where and when they work and measure performance on tangible outcomes, not the time it takes to do them.

Give every employee a stake in your business

Offering a share scheme to your employees so they have a real, tangible stake in your success is one of the most effective ways to retain talent. In fact, 95% of businesses with a share scheme say it has actively helped to improve employee loyalty. 

A strong employee share scheme can help your company attract top performers in the first place – and then help keep them on your team for years to come. And when your employees have shares in your company, your success is their success. This gives them a sense of ownership and belonging that can drastically boost engagement across your organization. 

Give your people a voice

Businesses that give their employees a voice are a massive 12X more likely to retain them. 

And it’s no wonder why. Empower your people with a real say in how things are done in your organization through surveys and one-to-ones and they can carve out the job they want. That’s not going to be something they’ll want to leave in a hurry.

On the other hand, people who feel like they need to hide part of themselves from their colleagues are never going to be able to bring their best selves to work every day. And that will leave them eyeing the exit – and rarely going the extra mile while they remain your employee.

Try Assembly to see how easy it can be to empower your employees with a voice.

Train and support your managers

A massive 82% of workers have considered quitting because of a bad manager.

So, don’t be surprised if a team member is eyeing the door if their boss:

  • Doesn't communicate properly
  • Can’t criticize them constructively and rarely praises them
  • Is afraid of having difficult conversations
  • Cares more about looking good in front of their boss than supporting their team

All the hard work you put into retaining your best employees will go out the window if your people managers constantly undermine them. 

Effective organizations understand this and make giving their managers all the training and support they need to do a great job a key part of their retention strategy. If you’re currently promoting your best individual contributors to management roles without giving them any training, then you’d be well advised to make training them properly a priority.

Recognize your people

A massive 79% of people who quit their jobs say a lack of appreciation was a major reason they left. 

Despite this, respondents to one survey reported an average of 50 days since they last felt recognised in any way at work – while a Gallup poll shows that 65% of employees haven't received any form of recognition for good work in the last year.

Developing an effective employee recognition program could transform your retention rates. And giving your managers tools that make it easy for them to praise their colleagues – like Assembly’s Give Recognition Flow – is a simple way to bake recognition into your company culture.

Book a demo of Assembly to get all the tools you need to make recognizing your employees as easy as possible.

The final word

Want to reduce staff turnover rates this year? Implement the retention strategies we’ve outlined here to keep those top 5% of employees driving over 25% of your results around for longer.

Browse our Free Employee Recognition Guide

Get the foundational knowledge on creating an employee recognition program that boosts employee engagement and helps them feel valued.

Explore Guide

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Assembly SOC 2 compliant?

Yes, at Assembly, security is a top priority. Each quarter, we have ongoing security work that is everyone’s responsibility. While we maintain a strong security posture, it was important for us to prove to our customers that we do everything we claim to do. This led us to pursue a SOC 2 Type II report that would provide evidence of our compliance with industry gold-standard security practice.

What's the ROI for employee recognition?

There is study after study showing that employee recognition leads to increased engagement. This in return creates an environment where employees are happier and more motivated which increase productivity and reduces voluntary turnover significantly. In order to filled critical roles, companies tend to spend nearly twice the value of an annual salary. Assembly is an investment in your employees that supports your bottom line.

Does Assembly offer longer-term contracts?

Yes, we will offer contracts for companies with longer-term agreements to help larger customers have more certainty around future costs.

The minimum agreement term is a 12-month subscription.

Does Assembly offer onboarding support?

We do and for FREE! Any new customer needing further support to get started with Assembly to ensure you're set up for success can request custom onboarding support. Improving your employee experience is about much more than just using our amazing software; it’s about transforming your business to create a workplace that people love. That’s much easier to do with the personal support and advice from our passionate people experts.

Is there a free version of Assembly?

Yes. We offer a completely free plan for up to 50 team members. This plan is intended for teams or organizations that are looking to get started with an employee engagement tool. Keep in mind, this plan is limited in features.

All customers can open an Assembly account for free and get started without a credit card. Then you can change plans as necessary.

How much do rewards cost?

At the time of redemption (when your employees exchange their points for a paid reward) you'll pay face value. If a reward is a $10 Amazon gift card, your cost will be $10. All paid rewards are billed for on a monthly basis.

The good news is that you don't have to pay for rewards upfront because we only charge you when points are redeemed, not when they're earned.

Does Assembly offer discounts?

We offer discounts or educational or charitable organizations. In order to secure a discount, you'll first need to book a demo with a customer support specialist.

For all other organizations, we are willing to consider longer-term agreements in exchange for discounts. To set up annual plans or longer, you will need to book a demo with a customer support specialist.

How do I cancel my plan if needed?

If you're on a month to month plan, you can go here and cancel anytime. If you're having concerns or need help setting up your account for success, you can always book a demo with a customer support specialist.

If you're on a longer-term custom plan, you'll need to reach out to your customer support specialist to cancel your account or email us at

What customizations are available?

Great question! You can customize your core values to match your organization's to boost and track alignment. You can change your currency from the 🏆 emoji (our default) to any emoji of your choice. You can swap our logo for your own. You can also set up company culture rewards such as, "Lunch with the CEO," "Buy a book on us," and so much more!

Who can give or receive recognition?

While we recommend a peer to peer set up where anyone in your organization can give or receive recognition, you can set up Assembly however you want. If you need to limit the people who can give or receive recognition, that's perfectly fine and can be done from your Admin, here.

What integrations are available?

Assembly connects to the tools your employees use every day to offer an easy, seamless experience with minimal change management.  

Assembly has integrations with HCM/HRIS systems like ADP, Google, Office 365, and Slack. We also integrate with communication tools like Slack and Teams so you and your employees can access Assembly wherever they work now.

What's your average adoption rate?

That depends on the company's permissions set up. That said, over 90% of the employees on Assembly's platform are recognized on a monthly basis. That means nearly every employee across all of our customers are receiving regular recognition from their peers, managers, or leadership. We're extremely proud of this.

Must rewards be set up to use Assembly?

They are not required. You can use Assembly without having rewards set up. However, we don't recommend it if you intend to have a high adoption and usage rate. You can always keep the costs down by offering internal culture rewards that are fulfilled by you internally.

Are points required to use Assembly?

No, you can remove allowances from anyone or everyone. It's up to you but we do recommend using points whether they're worth a real dollar value or not. Companies that use points have a much higher engagement rate even if those points don't exchange for real dollars.

Could find the answer you are looking for?

Please schedule time with an expert and we will help you to get all your questions answered