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Employee Retention: Why Pushing the Baby Birds from the Nest Brings Them Flying Back Home

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As challenges go, employee retention is one of the toughest facing the water and wastewater industry. While many efforts are focusing on attracting new talent to the profession, not as much attention seems to be aimed at stopping the revolving door of employees who come in, get the required training and certifications, learn the system, and then leave for better pay or perceived benefits. How can an industry that rarely wins the competitive battle for salaries ever hope to keep good people and nurture long-term employees? To survive in today's marketplace, utilities must shake up their model for employee retention. For example, allowing employees to spread their wings and fly outside the normal “job description” often leads to workers who feel most at home in their current utility's nest. There are practical steps utilities can take to examine their organization and identify creative yet workable initiatives to retain their employees.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2008

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  • Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation is an archive of papers published in the proceedings of the annual Water Environment Federation® Technical Exhibition and Conference (WEFTEC® ) and specialty conferences held since the year 2000. These proceedings are not peer reviewed.

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