Workforce Solution: Make Workers a Better Offer

April 8, 2022 | Solutions for Iowa's Evolving Workforce Brenda Martin, Workforce Programs Director, CIRAS,

The workforce shortage isn’t a recent phenomenon. It’s 20 to 30 years in the making and may worsen in the coming years. For employers experiencing a “labor shortage,” there is a simple solution: make workers a better offer. 

Watch our recent Workforce Skirmishes webinar to find out more information and where to find potential employees:

Here are additional suggestions for attracting and retaining workers:

  • Invest in technology. Automation reduces the need for employees to do simple, repetitive tasks, which gives them time to focus on more complex work.
  • Enhance employee benefits. Employers can become more competitive by improving basic compensation like higher wages, flexible schedules, better working conditions, and access to benefits for health care, paid family leave, and medical leave.
  • Pay attention to company culture. Employee retention is higher when workers feel valued. Do you tell the truth about what it’s like to work in your company? Is it enjoyable to work there? How do employees contribute to the decision-making process? Are there opportunities for employees to advance or further their training? These things create a culture in which people feel valued and enjoy coming to work every day. This leads to increased productivity and retention.
  • Consider retirement-age workers. The future workforce will include employees who work beyond retirement age in part-time, less physically demanding positions. They may require flexible schedules and right-sized compensation packages.
  • Consider using remote employees to support some roles such as finance and engineering.
  • Seek new groups of people by removing workplace barriers. Target your marketing efforts to these groups.
  • Establish relationships with potential future employees. Take an active role in community programs for students, from kindergarten through college.