Having high turnover is a problem for any organization. Some would argue that it is just a sign of the times. Millennials, especially, are not expected to stay in positions for as long as previous generations. The workplace is more fluid than it has ever been before. It has never been easier for employees to seek new positions.

However, even with all things considered and taking the changing labor landscape into account too, high turnover can be a major problem for organizations. It can be costly, disruptive and take up a lot of time, effort and energy.

But, generally speaking, high turnover often stems from two key issues the majority of the time. Of course, there are multiple reasons for high turnover, but there are two that stand out the most and appear to occur time and time again. Firstly, high turnover often comes from either a highly stressful environment or an unreasonable manager/department head. Secondly, a poor selection process that results in the wrong people being hired also leads to a high turnover rate.

A highly stressful environment or unreasonable management

What to do about an unreasonable manager can be quite a challenge. The problem is that issues can go unnoticed, or senior management can turn a blind eye. Bad managers can mistreat and even, in some cases, be abusive towards their staff over a period of years.

But, even if their turnover rate is high, it can go unchallenged because they are adept at managing up. To be honest, any problems that exist might go completely unnoticed – if results and accomplishments are consistently impressive. Businesses are results-driven so totally missing such issues is all too easily done.

It is usual that there will come up a time when a bad manager’s failings and weaknesses will catch up with them. However, this can take years and the damage that is caused in the meantime can be considerable.

Hiring the wrong people

If the above problem is focused on employees being forced out when they shouldn’t be and an organization losing too many good staff unnecessarily, then the other key reason for high turnover is the opposite. If the wrong hires are made, it becomes apparent fairly quickly that an individual is not really cut out for a position. This is a much easier fix overall.

It begins with the organization recognizing precisely what skills and experience are really needed for a position and to put a candidate in the best position to perform well and succeed.

Once these key skills, qualities, and attributes have been identified, the next challenge is to ensure that the recruitment process is robust and rigorous in the way it serves to identify the extent to which a candidate meets the specific requirements. Whether that is asking more precise and targeted questions to elicit more useful information, or to better test or screen candidates are just some of the ways that a candidate’s skills and abilities can be drawn out at the interview stage.

This will undoubtedly result in the organization making better overall hiring decisions. If this is the case then retention becomes easier and turnover rates are likely to be lower.