Prevent It

WorkWell's Workplace Injury Prevention Blog

MSK Programs can help stop the revolving door of new hires

It is estimated that 33 -43% of new hires in the US voluntarily leave their jobs within the first six months. This statistic varies by industry and can even be more than 43%. Since it takes almost 8 months for new hires to be fully productive, this problem becomes costly for employers to solve.

Some of the reasons people leave are outlined below:

  • The job did not meet the expectations outlined in the interview
  • Job descriptions were unclear
  • Feelings of being overwhelmed and neglected due to
    • Lack of a structured onboarding process
    • Lack of ongoing support
  • The culture and management style differs significantly from their expectations from the hiring process or previous organizations where they worked.
  • Feeling underqualified and/or underappreciated
  • Compensation and benefits,
  • And in physically demanding jobs, the feeling of not being physically capable to perform the job.

Understanding and managing employee turnover is essential. Voluntary employee turnover is estimated to cost US employers $1 Trillion annually. The cost of replacing an employee is ½ to 2 times the employee's annual salary. So, for example, a $30,000 employee replacement cost can range from $15,000 to $60,000.

These replacement costs don't include indirect costs such as lost productivity, overtime, and the negative impact on morale. There are proactive steps that an employer can take to reduce employee turnover. In a recent survey,  92% of Human Resource executives believed that the quality of the employee experience is the most critical component to retaining employees.

The role of MSK programs in retention, employee experience, and injury prevention. When you look at turnover rates in industries with physically demanding or repetitive jobs, they are above the US industry norms. Historically, employers have looked at MSK programs as a way to prevent injuries and keep employees safe. But increasingly, employers are looking at MSK programs as a way to attract and retain employees.

The following programs assist in stopping the revolving door of new hires:

  1. Functional Job Analysis and Job Descriptions: Understanding and documenting the job's physical demands by analyzing the job and creating functional job descriptions. The resulting document creates a solid foundation of understanding for the employer and employee of what is required to perform the job. It minimizes misunderstandings of expectations during the hiring process.
  2. Post-Offer Employment Testing (POET): Implementing a POET program to ensure candidates are physically capable of performing their jobs. While creating a change in the hiring process, the benefits, such as reduced injuries and retention, are worth the investment.
  3. Managed Onsite MSK Clinic: An MSK Clinic, sometimes called a "PT Clinic," is a small investment in space and budget with a huge benefit. It is a lot of bang for the buck. An onsite clinic managed by a team of experts can provide much-needed support for a new hire, especially in physically demanding jobs. Onsite programs should be custom-designed to meet your unique challenges and may include:
    • New hire orientation education
    • Workplace rounds and proactive outreach
    • Job-specific conditioning
    • An onsite clinic to address early aches and pains
    • Toolbox talks or lunch and learns to engage employees in ongoing training
    • A trusted resource that employees feel comfortable visiting and sharing their concerns

While an MSK program doesn't address all the concerns that drive employee turnover, it is part of the foundation of an improved employee experience. The program helps new hires understand their job requirements, feel supported, and feel less overwhelmed. It is an essential building block of the company's culture and safety culture that will help employees thrive.

A new employee, Darrell, told his manager that he appreciated that the company cared enough about him to offer the program and said no other company had ever done that. ~ Food Distribution Customer