Villa Nemo Cap Martinet   79

It’s one of the biggest challenges faced by businesses: how do you attract top talent and make your company the destination of choice for the best candidates? 

Then, once you’ve found your dream employee, how do you make sure they stay with you? Recruitment and retention of staff is one of the toughest - and not to mention costly - challenges an entrepreneur faces. 

Large corporations know this already and have extensive strategies in place, often led by large talent and development teams. But with the exponential growth of small and medium-sized companies over previous years, SMEs are now realising they have to offer much more than a good salary to really hold on to the best talent.

“Organisations need to sharpen their focus on retention in the light of increased recruitment difficulties and competition for talent,” wrote Personnel Today recently. Competition for talent in the UK labour market is more fierce than ever according to a 2017 CIPD survey; turnover in the labour market has increased yet again - currently at 16.5%, up from 14% in 2015.  

Engagement and retention is equally tough. A survey by Cascade, which asked 447 HR directors their views on the HR landscape for 2018 found that 44% viewed employee engagement as their biggest challenge to overcome, closely followed by 36% who viewed their greatest hurdle as staff retention. Absence management and recruitment came in as the third top concern at 36%. 

“When employee engagement goes down,” Christoph Williams, talent and performance manager at Sony Europe told HR Magazine at the start of the year, “turnover goes up and retention goes down.” Williams warned that this was in part due to “too much emphasis on efficiency rather than rewarding work”. 

So what’s the answer? Upping wages rarely works and puts strain on an SME’s bottom line. Countless surveys have revealed that paying employees large sums of money is not enough to keep them happy at work. 

 In today’s working world, the hours are longer, the pressure and stress more intense and digital technology from WhatsApp to Slack means “working 9-5“ is little more than that Dolly Parton song released at time when a job still meant that - way back in 1980. 

Employees rarely switch off - in 2002 only 10% of employees checked their email outside office hours; now 50% will be working on their their smartphones before they’ve even got out of bed.  

So we say: get out, far away, from the office. “If we took a holiday,” as the great, wise Madonna sang, “took some time to celebrate; just one day out of life, it would be, it would be so nice.” That’s our view at Red7, where creating great travel experiences is our passion and something we’ve been doing  as a business for 21 years. 

With access to the best airfares and hotel rates, exclusive large capacity deluxe villas and cost effective private jet and private yacht hire we have long rewarded our own high performers and long-serving employees with “incentive travel” -  whether that’s a great holiday, a corporate retreat, or staff party and spa weekend. 

Incentives and rewards are well recognised as one of the most effective ways of retaining star performers - with some figures giving up to a 20% ROI from those who receive them.  I’m proud to lead a fiercely loyal team and we’ve long rewarded our high performers and long-serving team members with incentive holidays. 

This year, Red7 sales manager Viki Baines and my Executive Assistant Sadie Ball were whisked off on trips of a lifetime to celebrate their respective 10 year anniversaries at Red7. 



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