Retaining Employees Through Internal Recruiting

May 30, 2019

Abby Roveda, CPA | Senior Accountant | Published by Crow Shields Bailey

Retaining good employees is a challenge that businesses in all industries face—especially public accounting. As companies, we invest a lot of time and resources into the recruiting process so we can find the right employees to join our teams. However, recruiting our employees should not stop at their hire dates. As business owners and managers, we need to continue to spend our time and resources making our company the place that employees want to work as they grow and develop as professionals. There are a few key ways we have implemented an “internal recruiting” initiative at our firm that may work for your business as well.

Provide Leadership Opportunities

If you are hiring team members with the idea that they will one day advance to the top of your company or division, you should start training them on how to be leaders from day one. This not only gives them the skills needed to run the business successfully and manage their peers but lets them know you’re invested in them for the long term and have confidence in their abilities. Create committees that are in charge of certain events or functions within your company; get team members involved in organizations outside of the office; organize gatherings that stir up useful conversation about current events or industry specific topics. When you notice that they have knowledge about a unique skill or topic, encourage them to share it with their peers through a presentation or organized training.

Adapt Roles as Goals Change

The goals and career aspirations of your employees are constantly evolving. Create a mentorship program where employees have the opportunity to talk about their changing goals and aspirations frequently and an environment where they aren’t afraid to ask to try something new. A lot of turnover could be prevented by being adaptive to your employees’ requests. Practical examples of this include: giving them projects outside of their specialty, allowing them to play an active role in management decisions regarding policies that are important to them, or helping them get onto the board of an organization that matches their skills or interests. Adapting as your employees progress in their careers prevents them from feeling limited by their position within your company and shows them that new opportunities are available right where they are.

‘All work and no play makes Johnny a dull boy’

The easiest way to create a place where people want to work is to have fun. We aren’t telling you to throw productivity out the window, but don’t underestimate the power that happy hours, firm outings, and friendly competition can have over employee satisfaction. Creating fun doesn’t have to be a grand production or event that takes a lot of the time and resources of your HR staff. It can be as simple as sending around a link for a trivia quiz and giving out prizes for the highest score or as easy as renting out space at a restaurant to watch a Mardi Gras parade. Our team loves an opportunity to compete whether in cook offs, office pools for sporting events, charity races, or golfing for a good cause.

Create a Culture of ‘Yes’

Are your employees coming to you with suggestions or requests often? If they aren’t, either everything is perfect and you’re doing a great job or they may have assumed the answer would be ‘No.’ That is not to say that there aren’t a lot of times that the answer has to be ‘no’ but, you should embrace every opportunity to say ‘yes’ even if it is inconvenient and might require some extra costs. Saying ‘yes’ is the key to success of all of the concepts we have already discussed above. The time and money that goes into saying ‘yes’ to making changes, granting requests, and supplying opportunities for your team to bond are part of your investment in employee retainage.

Getting Started

The best way to implement an ‘internal recruiting’ initiative of your own is to start talking to your employees. That’s the easiest way to find out what their goals are, what leadership opportunities make sense for them, and how they like to have fun. From there, all you have to do is start saying ‘yes.’