5 Tips To Reduce Staff Turnover in Hospitality & Retail


There are many reasons people seek jobs in hospitality. Some people are looking for careers, but many use it as a stepping stone. Many of my clients believe that this is the reason staff are not only hard to find, but are hard to retain. In my experience, staff turnover rates are quite high. Many of our clients believe that this can’t be improved. However, we believe that it’s manageable. Here are 5 easy steps to improve staff turnover.


Staff training help reduce staff turnover

Staff need to be trained in their jobs. There is nothing worse than turning up to a shift and not knowing what to do. It is generally expected that when staff are hired that they should know how to be professionals at their job. But like every job, there are always subtle differences in procedure that vary from business to business. By not training your staff, you are not giving them the best possible chance to do their job effectively. This can leave them feeling helpless, unsupported and undervalued.



Setting up expectations

This is one of the simplest, but often overlooked aspects of running a hospitality and retail business. As an owner, you need to communicate to your staff exactly what it is that you expect. How to dress, what their conduct is on shift, how you expect them to perform, how to talk to customers, etc. Anything that you can think of, that you expect must be written down and communicated to staff.



Make things consistent and predictable

In general, humans struggle to operate in unpredictable environments. It uses too much of their energy as they try to anticipate what is coming next. Are they going to be understaffed? Is the stock going to run out? Are all of the pieces of equipment functioning? Essentially owners must set up their business so that no matter who is working, on what day, the business runs nearly the same no matter what. This even includes rewards for good behaviours, and consequences for those that are not as desirable.



Keep it simple

This sounds simple, but it does require some thought and work. You must look objectively at your business, and decide what is necessary and what is not. By failing to remove unnecessary tasks, staff are more likely to dread coming to work. What are you, as an owner, your management team and your staff doing that is wasting time and energy? By eliminating unnecessary tasks, staff have more time to focus on customers. Which means they will find their jobs more pleasurable because they know they can easily do the one thing they are there to do. Serve customers.



Remove the unnecessary stress

People cannot function properly when they are stressed. Their judgement becomes clouded, they lose focus, their health suffers, and they shut down. It’s good to have a little bit of stress, as this helps people to perform at their peak. But too much can be extremely destructive. When staff don’t experience debilitating levels of stress, they feel excited to turn up to work and give it their best.