Field service leaders know that attracting the right employees is just one part of the whole talent picture — it’s just as imperative to have strong strategies in place to keep great employees around.

Below, HR expert Suzanne Lucas shares five key tips for creating a work environment that keeps employees from looking for the next best thing.

1) Promote from within.

Of course, every manager wants to keep his or her best-performing members in their own department. But to keep your top talent around, it’s imperative to give them opportunities to advance through the ranks and take on different responsibilities.

This goes beyond a simple internal jobs board — rising stars need to know that their manager is supportive of a potential upward move. This is especially important in field service — as older, more experienced field service techs retire, a new generation of ambitious, tech savvy workers will take their place. These employees expect opportunities for advancement in their careers, and may leave if they don’t find them.

2) Discover what they value.

These days, a competitive salary isn’t always enough to keep employees around. Some workers may value a hefty paycheck, but others may prefer a more flexible work schedule, for example.

Figuring out what exactly your employees value is a great way to show them that you care about their individual needs, and don’t just consider them as another cog in the machine.

3) Invest in their career development.

When you give your team opportunities to learn new skills, everybody benefits. Your employees will appreciate that you’re investing time and money into their career growth, and your company will be equipped to offer the best service to your customers.

Offering training opportunities is especially important as field service companies are increasingly working on connected devices — field service techs must have mastery over the Internet of Things and smart devices to keep up with customer requests.

4) Provide feedback — both positive and negative.

Your organization may be used to annual or quarterly performance reviews, but keeping top talent around requires more frequent, proactive feedback. It’s essential to show appreciation when your team performs well, and it’s just as crucial to let employees know areas they can improve.

Open communication is key to fostering the right skills to help employees move forward in their careers, as well as ensuring that customers’ needs are being met.

5) As a manager, go above and beyond.

As a manager, you’re setting an example for how your team should act every day. Even if all your employees aren’t star performers, you should focus on being the best manager you can be.

How? Provide clear guidance and establish goals. Avoid micromanaging. Be prompt and fair when dealing with problems, and don’t be afraid to cut ties with those workers who bring the whole team down.

Of course, nobody’s perfect. That’s why it’s crucial to invest in your own development and management skills to keep your best players around for the long run.

H/T: Cornerstone OnDemand


ABOUT Preeti Upadhyaya

Avatar photoPreeti is a multimedia journalist with expertise in technology, economics and markets reporting. Her work has been featured on Marketplace, Chicago Public Radio, MarketWatch, the Wall Street Journal and other publications. Preeti has a M.S. in advanced business reporting from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.