December 31, 2013

Tips to Becoming an Employer of Choice in 2014

good choice2014 is just hours away and with it will come opportunities for companies to make a fresh start in the areas of sourcing top talent, increasing productivity, improving organizational culture and brand and employee engagement and satisfaction—all of which can affect retention rates.

The FORTUNE 100 Best Places to Work will officially launch January 16, 2014. And though you’ll have to wait a couple weeks to discover which companies made the list, you don’t have to wait to take the necessary steps to ensure your company is an employer of choice.

china gormanChina Gorman, CEO of Great Place to Work Institute, offers companies a sneak peek into some of the key themes for 2014’s list. Read on to discover just why those top 100 companies made the list and what your business can focus on for the upcoming year:


Employee Development and Leadership Engagement

Among top employers, 2014 promises to address some of the challenges we’ve seen in recent years. We’ve seen several studies come out this past year discussing how many employees are not engaged in their workplace. This year, the best companies are figuring out creative ways to develop and help their employees with their career paths to engage and retain top performers. They do this through executive coaching, professional development classes, and training for managers to identify how to best facilitate employee growth.

At the Small and Medium companies, there is a strong sense of inclusion and togetherness throughout each organization, which is a key component of a trust-based culture. CEOs and senior-level executives make an effort to get to know employees personally, and will often participate in events like onboarding, training, recognition, and celebrations. Beyond that, leaders go to great lengths to gather input and feedback from employees regarding the workplace and related decisions. Due to the many opportunities for involvement, employees tend to feel quite invested in the company from a personal and a business perspective.

Enhancing Company Culture

Additionally, in an effort to engage employees, company culture is not only prioritized, but also strategic. By creating a distinct culture, employers are able to attract the right employees for their company. We see this with both large and small companies from Google to Badger Mining Corp.

When employee and employer values and visions align, we see companies succeeding in retention, profitability, and innovation. Best practices include multiple rounds of interviews, interview questions that assess a candidate’s fit with the company values, and simulated work experiences to get a sense of the candidate’s abilities and interpersonal style before coming on board.

Across their many unique organizations, best companies really understand how to create a fun and celebratory environment in a way that’s meaningful to their own employees. A wide variety of fun practices and events are integrated into everyday life, often punctuated by big celebrations once or twice per year. From company trips to Maui to pontoon boat rides to simple “Random Acts of Fun,” the best companies are constantly pushing themselves to find new ways to foster a sense of fun and enjoyment in the workplace.

 Succession Planning and Generational Approaches

Another trend we see is companies are positioning themselves for long-term leadership success by taking demographic changes into serious consideration as part of their corporate strategies. Succession planning efforts are imperative as boomers retire and younger employees rise through the ranks. Tying into company culture and engagement, employers are looking at ways to involve new generations and keep them interested in their workplace. We see this come to life through new cultural practices and picking the right fit for their organization.

Read more in Employer Branding

Marks’ stories have also been published in a variety of newspaper, magazine and online formats including The Arizona Republic, The Daily Herald, Arizona Foothills Magazine and various classroom magazines of Scholastic Inc. Service is her passion, writing is her platform and uplifting and inspiring the community is her purpose. Marks received a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication from Arizona State University.
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