Avoid Quick Quitting: Extend Company Culture to Contracted Consultants

Your company’s culture has never been more prevalent than it is now. Throughout the past three years, the workforce has felt the impact of The Great Resignation and its jarring effects, such as quiet quitting: employees disengaging from their work because of company disconnect and a less-than-optimal experience. Now, another consequence of America’s tight labor market has come to light: Quick Quitting.

The US short tenure rate (STR), the measure of the fraction of positions that end after being held for less than a year, peaked in 2022. This data conveys that workers are more willing to leave their jobs at any given moment, whether they have been there for five months or a day.

With more job opportunities available now than there are workers, employees have the confidence to find another job that suits their needs better. In a LinkedIn article, the author states that “workers are also spending less time at each job in industries considered to be more traditionally white-collar, like tech….” This is due to the high demand for these well-paid professions. The LinkedIn report executed by data scientists found that quick quitting has increased the most in the arts and recreation industry by 11.6% year-over-year and tech and media by 10.5%.

Why are people Quick Quitting?

According to the World Economic Forum, once candidates accept a role, 91% admitted they would consider leaving a job within the first month and 93% during their probation period. They recorded their reasons for leaving as the following: lack of proper onboarding,  poor management, obscurity between the job and how it was advertised, a discrepancy with corporate culture, or a better job offer.

Data isn’t the only indication of this phenomenon; people in the workplace are responding to this trend like never before. Writer Bill Murphy went viral for quitting his job after one day working for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and states that he has heard from someone “every other day looking for advice on quitting.” Murphy shares a simple but telling moment of feeling disheartened when a senior employee informed him he’d taken 10 minutes longer than what was allowed for a coffee break as he went to work in an enclosed office. It was time to move on. Once he published his story, people across the country felt heard. The relatability grew so intense that Murphy is now writing a book: The Joy of Quitting, to help people find comfort in leaving a job that doesn’t value them.

Consultants are no longer compartmentalized

The idea that workers could pack up and leave is not isolated to full-time permanent hires. The unsettled feeling can extend to the contingent labor market (both tech and non-tech), especially as this workforce segment grows. Just two years ago, there were 51.5 million US contingent workers, representing 35% of the workforce. These contracted consultants, especially those in tech, have an abundance of choices to play their hand at new roles for limited engagements, and they are trying on your company for size.

Gone are the days when a contracted worker is given a spare cubicle in the corner and left alone for six months. Their contributions, particularly as technology experts, are integral to today’s organizational transformations and are part of the decisions being mulled over at the C-suite level.  From the moment they agree to placement in a contract-length position, the clock is ticking on how that engagement will unfold. Much of their decision to complete the engagement depends heavily on their onboarding experience, reception by the hiring organization, and the tools they are provided to perform their job in the compressed timeframe. Yes, of course, contract specifications can outline the terms, including if there are penalties to the consultant for terminating a contract early. However, it’s not as uncommon as you would think to move on quickly, or at the very least to decline to extend an engagement, given today’s market, the inclination to find better roles, and the expectation placed on companies to deliver a positive working experience.

First Impressions Matter

Therefore, as a company, you should not want your employees or consultants looking into how to stop working for you but rather how to work better. The first step to achieving this starts with the first impression. Regardless of the consultant’s position, everyone working for your company should always feel welcomed. Whether remote or non-remote, full-time, part-time, contingent, or permanent employee, there’s always a way to make them part of the team to deter quick quitting.

Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella hired 50,000 employees during the pandemic and found that people are what mattered the most during the onboarding process. Specifically, the connection employees felt with the people who make up the company. Nadella explains that one manager at Microsoft personally introduced a new employee to everyone. “He would set up the Teams call and make the introduction and then leave the call so that she could have the one-on-one with the person.” While this might sound time-consuming, personal attention such as this allows someone to do their job effectively.

Recruiters at staffing firms are uniquely positioned to help drive that cultural difference and dissuade quick quitting by partnering closely with hiring organizations, leveraging their brand, and translating the experience to new consultants. By maintaining communication, offering support, building a robust benefits package, and streamlining onboarding, staffing experts can set the stage for a positive experience at the onset; HR teams can then continue to build the relationship with the consultants by embracing them, extending their brand value to that workforce sector, and being inclusive and open to their ideas.

Discourage Quick Quitting with Transparency

While it might be tempting to oversell a company to candidates, it’s important never to promise something you can’t keep. Recruiters should hire passionately by detailing benefits but staying truthful by accurately describing job tasks and the work environment. Likewise, candidates should seek transparency within themselves and their potential employers. Asking the right questions along the way will increase the chances of the proper placement and decrease the possibility of quick quitting.

 

Here at SSi People, our values are putting people and relationships first– always, being unfailingly honest at all times, and treating everyone with respect and dignity to ensure every voice is heard. 

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