Recruiting new staff is a long, expensive process, which is why if you lose a member of the team, the repercussions are felt far and wide.

To build a strong and healthy business, capable of growth and constant improvement, you need to retain your staff. The top talent you spend years nurturing, or recruitment funds bringing on board, is a business asset that needs protection.

So I’m going to provide eight ways you can retain your best people.

1. Put your best foot forward by hiring the right people

There might be a simple reason you’re losing staff – are you hiring the right people in the first place? A person in an unsuitable role will quickly get fed up and decide to move on.

Review your hiring procedures and interview tactics. Are you correctly defining the jobs you advertise? Are you asking the right questions when interviewing candidates?

2. Create a strong onboarding process and support them from the start

How much close attention are new hires given? Do you properly mentor and gradually introduce them to all aspects of the business? Or do you simply sit them at their desk and leave them to it?

A proper onboarding process will ensure new employees get the best possible start. They will understand the roles of other employees, establish the business’ ethics and standards, and create an understanding of their own responsibilities.

Speak to existing employees and ask how they found the onboarding process. Encourage them to be completely honest. It will help you build a great onboarding process for new starters.

3. Focus on employee engagement

How connected are your existing employees to the business? By focusing on employee engagement, you’ll ensure that every member of staff understands exactly how their role impacts the business and contributes to the wider goals of the organisation.

Celebrate wins, encourage improvement, and allow people to learn from failure. The business won’t get anywhere without a culture that embodies these qualities. It will help to reduce staff turnover.

4. Offer tangible benefits

Offering employees benefits doesn’t necessarily mean paying sky-high wages. Examples include providing fresh fruit in the kitchen, or the option to work flexible hours.

Celebrate staff birthdays with decorations in the office, or strike up a deal with the local sandwich shop to get cheaper sarnies for staff. Focus on these small things as they go a long way.

5. Pay as well as you can afford to

Most people are happy to work for what is considered a ‘good wage’. That means paying at least the going market rate, but stretching a little further if budgets allow. Monitor your overheads, but pay people as much as you can afford to. This should be based on their performance, experience and time with the company. It won’t go unnoticed and will negate the need for any uncomfortable pay-rise decisions.

6. Treat all staff equally

Unfortunately, favouritism can all too easily rear its ugly head in the world of work. And this often happens innocently, or as a result of an increased amount of time a manager may spend with particular employees.

It’s vital that you avoid this. Pay attention to every employee and ensure they’re all treated equally. Managers should regularly check in with their entire team, and acknowledge good work. Morale, motivation and staff retention will increase as a result.

7. Regular review meetings

Employee satisfaction is a moving target. If you neglect the importance of dealing with issues when they arise, the effects will be far more potent. Have regular review meetings which are far more frequent than annually.

Create an open culture that values employee feedback above everything else, and there’ll be no place for underlying tensions to hide.

8. Provide training opportunities

Staff will feel valued if they see the business actively investing in them. In the digital age, the world of training has evolved considerably. Business can now provide remote training, or in bite-sized chunks that can be accessed as and when.

Don’t underestimate the value in providing regular, on-going training for employees.