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36 Employee Retention Statistics to Learn From and Reduce Churn

High turnover can be crippling for companies. Learn why it happens with the latest employee retention statistics of 2024.

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LinkedIn posts are awash with gloomy tales of layoffs, panic about job security, and the threat of AI wiping out everyone’s jobs. In response, people with itchy feet are job hopping from company to company in the hope of finding a more stable situation, brighter career development opportunities, and more green to pay their bills. 

While many workers will land on their feet, declining worker retention and employee engagement can take their toll on productivity rates, team morale, and overall company culture. Employers need to do something about it. 

This guide provides 34 employee retention statistics that illustrate what’s going on in the current work climate. We’ll learn how many people are considering leaving their roles, what makes them want to jump ship, and how employers can turn the tide on employee turnover.  

Employee retention in 2024

The Bureau of Labor Statistics Job Opening and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) revealed the following data, published in March 2024: 

  • 5.2 million total employment separations in 2024, which is significantly beneath the 8.5 million job openings.
  • 1.5 million of these separations were caused by layoffs and discharges.
  • 3.3 million were the result of employees quitting their roles.

For perspective, that’s slightly more than the entire state population of Iowa voluntarily resigning from their positions within the month of March. However, the number of quits is down by 480,000 over the year. 

Layoffs can impact your employee retention rate, too, causing a ripple of discontent and insecurity among your remaining team members when they witness their fellow employees leave the organization involuntarily. 

  • 65% of employees working for companies that have recently experienced layoffs worry about their job security, compared to only 24% of employees whose employer hasn’t recently terminated any of their colleagues. (Nectar

32 employee retention statistics

So, what does this data mean to your organization? To improve employee retention, consider the following facts about your employees’ plans, aspirations, and attitudes toward you as their employer. 

  • 48% of employees are currently “watching for” or “actively seeking” a new job. 
  • 56% of employees believe now is the right time to find a new role (a drop from 70% who felt the same in June 2022). 
  • Only 28% of people would recommend their organization as a great place to work, meaning negative employer branding could also drive churn and repel job seekers. (Gallup

To learn more about why employees feel this way, we’ve pinpointed three common trends that encourage employees to head toward the exit: financial circumstances, employee disengagement, and poor employee benefits. 

How do financial circumstances impact employee retention?

  • 43% of employees would leave their jobs if they didn’t need the money. 
  • 28% of people choose better compensation as the primary reason to leave their role in 2024. (Nectar) 
  • 23% of employees struggle to pay their bills every month, and 48% of people must budget carefully but are able to meet their needs. 
  • Employees who can’t afford their bills are 39% more likely to look for a new role, twice as many compared to those who live comfortably. (Achievers

There’s also a significant mismatch between why employees leave and the reasons HR believes they do. Achiever’s 2024 Engagement and Retention study also found that: 

  • 28% of employees report compensation as a top reason for employees leaving their roles, but this is only acknowledged by 15% of HR leaders. 

Why is this happening? 

The economic landscape has put a strain on most Americans over the past few years, as inflation and the cost of living have outpaced salary raises. As a result, 44% of Americans cannot cover a $1,000 expense with cash and would borrow from friends and relatives, use credit cards, or take out a personal loan if they met an emergency situation. 

If any money is left over after paying the bills, many face a choice between paying down existing debt or trying to stockpile emergency savings. 36% of people have more credit card debt than savings, and 32% have less emergency savings than they did one year ago. 

It’s no surprise then, that employees seek roles that pay well and with clear bonus structures, from financially stable employers. Remember that almost half of employees have their ears open about alternative job opportunities, so if they notice your competitors paying more, they’ll likely investigate. 

How does employee engagement impact employee retention?

  • 41% of employees leave a company behind due to issues with engagement and culture. (Gallup) 
  • 93.5% would stay working for a company for five years or more if the culture was great and the pay was fair. (Nectar
  • When employees are recognized frequently for their contributions, this translates to a 149% increase in the desire to stay at the company for more than a year. (O.C Tanner
  • 90% of organizations are worried about employee retention. Providing learning opportunities is their top retention strategy for those companies. 
  • Companies with a strong learning culture boast 23% internal mobility and 57% retention rates. (LinkedIn)

Once again, employees and HR leaders don’t always align on how much of an impact development opportunities have on departures. 

  • 24% of employees mention that career progression is the primary reason for them leaving, but only 15% of HR leaders realize this is a key issue. (Achievers) 

Why is this happening? 

Employee engagement encompasses numerous visible and invisible elements of your company culture that make a real difference to your workers’ overall experiences. Gallup’s research provides insight into the many ways your culture can create actively disengaged employees, impacting your ability to retain employees. Their employee turnover statistics show the percentage of people who list the following engagement and cultural issues as their top reasons for leaving their roles: 

  • Advancement, development, or career opportunities: 12% 
  • Unrealistic job expectations and responsibilities: 7%
  • Work no longer interesting: 6%
  • Workplace culture: 5% 
  • Lack of respect: 4% 
  • Values don’t align: 3% 
  • Lack of honesty and transparency: 2% 
  • Coworkers: 1% 
  • Lack of employee recognition: 1% 
  • Insufficient training: Less than 1% 
  • DEI issues: Less than 1% 
  • Poor communication: Less than 1% 

How do benefits packages impact employee retention?

  • 58% of employees state that having their pay significantly increased or improving their benefits package influences their decision to move to a different organization. (Gallup) 
  • Benefits account for 31% of total compensation for civilian employees, 29.6% of total compensation for private industry employees, and 38% of total compensation for state and local government workers. (Bureau of Labor Statistics
  • 70% of employers are considering adding lifestyle spending accounts to their benefits as a recruitment and retention tool. (Mercer
  • $169 per month is the average contribution amount to a lifestyle spending account. (Benepass

Why is this happening? 

With employee benefits making up around a third of your employees’ total compensation, it’s unsurprising that your workers depend on them for personal and professional support. 

Yet, employee benefits don’t always serve workers well. For example, 38% of insured Americans delay or skip necessary medical treatment because they can’t afford high out-of-pocket costs. 

Employees know to shop around and find an employer that offers a comprehensive benefits package that improves their work-life balance and allows them to bring their whole self to work. For some, this means choosing an employer that can support their desire to start a family or subsidize child care for their existing children. For others, it could mean providing access to a range of mental health and financial wellness resources to support anxiety around debt management. 

The great news for companies is there are plenty of ways to build out a benefits package that is flexible enough to support every individual in your company. Increasing your employee retention rate normally boils down to offering:  

  • Robust healthcare (Flexible spending accounts are the most popular design for 86% of Benepass customers.) 
  • A wide range of employee perks covering wellness, remote working, professional development, family and childcare, food, and more. (Lifestyle spending accounts are the top choice of perk for 51% of Benepass customers.) 

How to improve your employee retention

The following key strategies will improve your ability to retain employees, increase engagement, and attract top talent to join your ranks: 

  • Offer competitive pay: Use industry benchmarking data to understand how your compensation compares to the rest of the market.
  • Provide career advancement opportunities: Ensure employees can visualize a future at your organization. Use career pathing, invest in employee training, and set up informal mentor relationships to keep everyone progressing. 
  • Recognize your employees frequently: Adopt a formal recognition program to praise, appreciate, and reward your workers for their contributions to your organization. 
  • Solicit employee feedback: Actively listen to your employees by collecting regular feedback via pulse and engagement surveys, and set up employee resource groups to amplify the voices of underrepresented workers. 
  • Embrace flexible working hours and arrangements: Trust your employees to choose the best time and location to perform their work. 
  • Prioritize company culture: Set clearly defined work values and reward those who embody them. 
  • Choose enticing employee benefits: Add a range of pre- and post-tax benefits to your total compensation package. Consider implementing a lifestyle spending account enabling employees to personalize their benefits experience. 

Ready to decrease voluntary turnover and increase job satisfaction throughout your organization? Book a free Benepass demo today to learn more about how our flexible benefits will engage and retain your best workers. 

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Rebecca Noori

Rebecca Noori is a freelance HR Tech and SaaS writer who is obsessed with our world of work. She writes about everything from employee benefits and performance management to upskilling and productivity tips. When she's not writing, you'll find her grappling with phonics homework and football kits, looking after her three kids.

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