January 24, 2018

Want to reduce turnover? Involve employees in social causes

Want to reduce turnover? Involve employees in social causes

A large survey of millennials found that a company’s support for social causes was an important factor when accepting a job offer for 55% of respondents. The survey was conducted by The Millennial Impact Report, an organization that looks at how US millennials interact with causes.

“Employees show more commitment to an employer that promotes the greater good, and they work harder too,” writes Mirco Tonin in his article Are workers motivated by the greater good? “Moreover, many people are more willing to give up some of their compensations to contribute to a social cause.”

One study analyzed the retention of employees at a global consulting firm. It found that participants who volunteered for a social impact consulting assignment, which involved a temporary reduction in salary, as much as 50% in some cases, were a third less likely to leave the firm. The conclusion was that employees felt more loyal to a firm when they were permitted to use their talents for a social cause.

The appeal comes not only from the desire to contribute to causes, but from the sense that a company that’s involved in social good is likely to be a better place to work. One respondent to The Millennial Impact Report explained, “If a company cares that much about outside causes, then I know they are invested in treating me right as an employee.”

High employee turnover is bad for team morale and can have significant financial costs for a company. Turnover is especially prevalent in Silicon Valley where the average tenure for employees at ten major technology companies is just one to two years.

Read further articles on personnel economics.