Top Ways to Retain Skilled Trades Talent

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Preserving Skilled Trades Talent: Strategies for Retention and Lowering Turnover

A construction site bustling with activity, where seasoned carpenters finesse wooden structures, electricians meticulously wire buildings, and plumbers deftly install intricate piping systems.

But there's a looming concern - skilled trades talent. As experienced hands retire or seek greener pastures, businesses are left grappling with the critical task of preserving their most valuable asset: their workforce.

Let's go through the top ways to retain skilled trades talent and lower turnover.

Competitive Compensation

In industries where specialized skills are at a premium, offering salaries and benefits that align with or exceed industry standards is essential.

Competitive compensation acknowledges the value of the skills possessed by trades workers. It also demonstrates a commitment to their well-being and professional worth.

Regular reviews and adjustments to compensation packages ensure that employees feel fairly rewarded for their expertise. It shows that their contributions to the organization are appreciated.

Keep an eye on hiring trends to help you market your compensation effectively.

You should also offer an array of perks, benefits, and bonuses. This can include bonuses, profit-sharing schemes, vacation, paid time off (PTO), retirement plans, life insurance, healthcare coverage, flexible schedules, employee stipends, gas reimbursement, equipment, uniforms, transportation, healthy meals, wellness stipends, access to mental health advisors, and professional development. By offering a compelling benefits package, employers can attract and retain skilled trades talent.

Career Advancement

One of the best ways to attract and retain skilled workers is a clearly defined career path. Offering employees the opportunity to get promotions is just as important as making it clear on what they have to do to get those promotions.

Providing avenues for career advancement demonstrates a long-term commitment to the growth and success of trades workers within the organization. That further solidifies their loyalty and engagement.

Training and Mentorship

Skills development and career advancement go hand in hand. Employees feel valued when their company wants to invest in their development and growth.

Training programs and mentors not only develop your employees so that they can perform their job effectively, but it can also fill talent gaps. This also builds stronger bonds and trusting relationships which increase employee retention rates.

Don't forget that skills development can come in all forms. Some may need to learn social skills so that they can sell better, or others may want financial literacy so that they can plan for their futures.

Work-Life Balance

Many skilled trades jobs can be physically demanding and require long hours. That can take a toll on workers' personal lives and well-being. Employers who prioritize work-life balance demonstrate an understanding of the challenges. They show a commitment to supporting their overall quality of life.

Offer flexible work schedules. That allows trades workers to better accommodate their personal obligations and interests. This flexibility can include options such as compressed workweeks, no weekend calls, flexible start and end times, or remote work arrangements where feasible. This demonstrates that you value their time.

By providing flexibility, employers empower their skilled trades workers to better balance their work commitments with their family, health, and personal pursuits. That leads to higher job satisfaction and reduced burnout.

Providing generous paid time-off benefits allows skilled trades workers to recharge. They can attend to personal matters without worrying about lost income.

In addition, offering paid vacation days, holidays, and sick leave supports the well-being of trades workers. It shows that you recognize the importance of rest and relaxation.

Open Communication

In industries where precision, safety, and teamwork are important, establishing clear channels for dialogue between management and skilled trades workers are essential.

When communication flows freely, skilled laborers feel valued, heard, and empowered to voice their ideas, concerns, and feedback. That leads to increased engagement and job satisfaction.

Routinely asking for feedback is important because employee needs, wants or expectations may change over time. Understanding these changes will put you in a better position to meet those desires and keep your team happy. Asking for and truly listening to feedback is a recipe for long term success.

Recognition and Reward

In the skilled trades sector, promoting employee engagement is particularly important for maintaining high levels of performance and job satisfaction.

Acknowledging the hard work and achievements of employees reinforces a culture of appreciation and motivates them to continue performing at their best. Frequent public celebrations at team meetings or outings can boost employee morale. This recognition also strengthens the bond between employees and the company that leads to greater loyalty and retention over time.

Leadership Skills

One key way to retain skilled trades talent through leadership is by providing clear direction and guidance. Strong leaders set a compelling vision and communicate it effectively to their teams.

By outlining clear goals and expectations, leaders empower skilled trades workers to understand their role in achieving broader organizational objectives, fostering a sense of purpose and direction in their work.

Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO)

Hire the right employees the first time by using recruitment process outsourcing. RPO professionals can develop targeted recruitment strategies to attract skilled tradespeople who are the right fit for your organization.

By understanding your business objectives and the specific needs of your company culture, they can tailor recruitment efforts to attract candidates that will ultimately stay longer.

Many RPO providers can also build custom retention programs. You don't have to do all the work of retaining your talent on your own.

Performance Reviews and Feedback

Performance reviews and feedback mechanisms are important. Conduct regular, structured evaluations. Make sure you provide meaningful feedback.

These reviews should focus on quantitative metrics, such as productivity and quality of work. It should also highlight qualitative aspects, such as communication skills and teamwork.

Identifying areas for growth and setting clear goals for advancement helps employees understand their potential within the organization.

Providing support to help skilled laborers achieve their career aspirations demonstrates a commitment to their long-term success and retention.

Provide Proper Equipment

To combat poor and dirty working conditions, proper equipment and uniforms are needed to keep your employees safe. Providing access to cutting-edge tools and equipment enhances productivity and efficiency. It also shows skilled trades workers that you're committed to staying ahead of the curve and investing in their success.

Companies that offer more than just standard work equipment such as boots, major tools, transportation and assist their employees with purchasing and replacing common tools and equipment really stand out among their competitors.

Community Involvement and Social Responsibility

Skilled trades talent often value opportunities to give back to their communities. By participating in community service projects or corporate social responsibility initiatives, organizations can create a sense of purpose and fulfillment.

When employees have the opportunity to participate in meaningful activities that benefit their communities, they develop a deeper sense of loyalty and commitment to their employer. Knowing that their organization prioritizes making a positive impact beyond profits can be a powerful motivator for skilled trades workers to remain with the company.

These initiatives provide opportunities for skilled trades workers to develop new skills. They can expand their networks. And, they can gain valuable experiences outside of their usual work responsibilities.

Exit Interview

Perform an exit interview to understand your employee's motivations for leaving. You should also revisit what initially attracted them to the company and what their expectations were during their time there. This could lead to feedback on potential gaps in what you're projecting in your recruitment efforts and what you're delivering in your employment, as well as operational or managerial deficiencies.

Retain Skilled Trades Talent Today

Attrition in any form can be a blow to your company's morale and productivity. A high turnover rate can also affect your budgets and eat into your bottom line. That's why it's paramount to implement a strong retention program.

Do you need an expert in your corner? Hunter Recruitment Advisors has helped over 150 nationwide clients like you since 2015.

Contact us today.

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