Career : Holding On To Newer Employees Is Key: Those With Less Than 2 Years Quit At Twice The Rate Of Other W

About Sirota Survey Intelligence


Founded in 1972, Sirota Survey Intelligence ( ) specializes in attitude research.  Headquartered in Purchase, NY, Sirota has conducted thousands of attitude surveys around the world that have helped organizations build strong, productive relationships with their employees, customers, communities, opinion leaders, investors, suppliers, and other publics.  The major results of their surveys have been summarized in The Enthusiastic Employee: How Companies Profit by Giving Workers What They Want ( Wharton School Publishing ).


Twice as many employees with less than two years of service voluntarily leave an organization as do those with more than two years of tenure, according to a study of worker attrition rates by Sirota Survey Intelligence, specialists in attitude research.

Employees with less than two years of service voluntarily leave at an average rate of about 20 percent per year, while those with more than two years tenure quit at an average rate of about 10 percent per year, according to the study of nearly 47,000 employees. Moreover, the data show that – of all those who voluntarily leave within any given year – almost 60 percent have less than two years tenure.


Sirota Survey Intelligence examined and linked data on employees’ attitudes from 2005 and 2004 employee attitude surveys to actual turnover that occurred in the next year, based on company-supplied data.


“To improve overall employee retention rates, companies should pay closer attention to retaining workers with less than two years’ experience in their jobs,” said Douglas Klein, president of Sirota Survey Intelligence.


“Many leaders fail to recognize that new employees are enthusiastic about staring a job, and that, by their actions, management destroys this enthusiasm. Our research shows a measurable decline in employees’ morale after they have been working for an organization for six months, and this deterioration worsens as they continue to evaluate what they expected against what they are receiving,” Klein added. “Best-in-class companies do not create this decline in morale as seen in the overall trend.

“During the first two years on the job, employees are confirming that their actual jobs meet their expectations, as well as those that their employers led them to believe during the recruitment process,” said David Sirota, chairman emeritus of Sirota Survey Intelligence and co-author of “The Enthusiastic Employee: How Companies Profit By Giving Workers What They Want,” ( Wharton School Publishing ).


“Since management’s attitudes and behaviors can enhance employee retention, companies should invest in improving managers’ leadership skills, and creating an environment where employees feel genuinely valued by their employers,” Sirota added.


Companies can improve the retention of newer employees by 10 to 13 percent by adopting more effective management policies and practices, according to analyses based on the study.  Key actions should include :-

  • Making the work more challenging, if possible
  • Being clear about potential career paths and providing greater opportunities for development
  • Managers being more consistent in what they say and do
  • Creating an atmosphere where employees feel valued: recognizing them for good performance, and  listening to their ideas and acting upon them
  • Creating a secure environment where employees do not continually feel as if they are on a “slippery slope”
  • Encouraging high standards of personal and professional integrity, such as clearly laying out what's expected in terms of ethics, and establishing accountabilities and consequences for exemplary and sub-standard behaviors

“Companies can save considerable sums of money by improving the retention of newer employees.  It is commonly estimated that it costs more than one and a half times the salary of a departing employee to replace him or her when factoring in recruitment and training costs and lost productivity,” Sirota added.

© Copyright 2006 - Sirota Survey Intelligence

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