With the recent economic downturn, most call centers have been enjoying a lower turnover rate than usual as most staff are staying in one place longer. While you can be happy with this increased retention rate, it doesn’t mean you can forget about turnover altogether. It’s important to know what your turnover rate is and measuring it in several different ways will show you some important trends in your center.
Here are some thoughts about measuring your call center turnover rate:
1. First, stop worrying about the “industry standard” for turnover. There isn’t one. Some companies have single-digit turnover while others are in triple digits. Your turnover rate is driven by many factors — the economy, the local labor market, type of industry, type of calls, corporate culture, supervisory effectiveness, etc. — and it’s meaningless to compare yourself to some industry average. It’s best to focus on your own turnover rate and what you can do to influence it.
2. Calculating turnover rate is simple. It’s simply the number of people that leave compared to (divided by) the total number of positions. So, if 80 people leave in a 400 seat call center, the turnover rate is 20%. The key here however is to apply this calculation to identify turnover rates in many different ways: internal versus external turnover, voluntary versus involuntary turnover, and turnover by call type, by shift, and by team (the latter providing insight about supervisory skills in retaining staff).
3. Don’t assume all turnover is bad. As long as you’re losing the bottom performers, turnover of some staff can be a good thing. The Jack Welch practice of regularly weeding out the bottom 10% can be a healthy housekeeping practice, but if the 10% you’re losing is the top category of performers, you need to seriously examine your compensation, recognition, and development strategies to stop the talent drain from your center.
To learn more about how to measure turnover rates and costs, as well as supervisory techniques for retaining good performers, join us for the popular class, Finders/Keepers: Proven Strategies for Call Center Staff Retention.