Know How to Hold ’Em

Retailers are finding it harder and harder to hold onto employees. According to a survey conducted by, which polled both retail employers and employees, nearly half (48%) of the surveyed retail employers say that retaining employees is more difficult than last year.

The survey also found that 28% of retail employees plan to leave their current jobs within the next year; 46% intend to leave within two years. Reasons for the quick exits, according to the employees polled, are lack of career-advancement opportunities, unsatisfactory pay, increased workload and work-life balance concerns.

Other findings of the survey include:

Eighty-one percent of retail employers plan to hire new employees in 2007; 42% say the inability to find qualified workers is the biggest impediment to hiring; and

While 62% of retail employees report they are satisfied overall with their current jobs, 69% say they are either actively seeking a new position or would be open to a new job if they came across one.

“Turnover isn’t a new challenge for retailers. However, as the labor pool continues to shrink and retailers feel the pressure from consumers to keep doors open longer…many retailers are embracing more competitive hiring and retention programs,” said Rosemary Haefner, VP of human resources for

Haefner made the following recommendations for improving recruitment and retention efforts:

Break through the clutter with your job postings, ensuring that they communicate an employee brand that is accomplishment-based;

Be specific in job postings, outlining specifically the salaries and all benefits; and

Measure employee satisfaction regularly, whether through informal discussions or organization-wide surveys.

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