How You Can Improve Warehouse Worker Retention

Improving Warehouse Worker Retention

Business is booming and you’re filling more orders than ever before. Congratulations! 

How does that reflect your current staffing levels? Are your workers happy? Or have you received more resignation notices as of late? 

The demand is growing for warehouse and distribution center workers, both in terms of how much work they have to and in terms of how many workers are needed as online retail grows by leaps and bounds. 

Finding good workers is one thing; keeping them is another. 

Here’s some advice on how to keep the team you have while attracting more great employees as you grow: 

Look at the bottom line 

As you call on your warehouse staff to do more, and quickly, are they being compensated appropriately and competitively? Are your top workers receiving a paycheck that reflects their efforts and your appreciation? There’s a downward trend in wages, and if a worker feels underpaid and overworked, they’re going to be easily tempted and drawn away by a company that can, and will, pay a little more. 

Weigh the benefits 

Some companies might pay around the same wages you offer but provide their workers with other benefits, like health insurance, more flexibility in scheduling, more paid time off, even stock or share options. If you can’t provide a higher wage, can you provide other perks instead? 

Look at the environment 

Walkthrough the warehouse and really take a look at where your employees are working. How much light is there? What is the temperature — cold? warm? comfortable? Is it clean or could it use some tidying up? Workers who aren’t in clean, well-lit and safe places aren’t likely to stay in one spot. It takes little to install some new, better lighting or some insulation to keep a large space a little more inviting for workers. 

Offer positive feedback 

This isn’t venturing into “participation trophy” territory, but everyone deserves,  and needs, a pat on the back every so often. Let your workers know they’re doing a good job and you appreciate them. If possible, offer this in person, verbally. Workers so often feel like no one notices anything other than the few-and-far-between mistakes. Prove them wrong. Compliments don’t cost a dime. 

Be flexible 

The new workforce isn’t the same as the old one. Younger workers want more flexibility from their employers and will move on in a short time if they don’t get it. If possible, consider adopting modified shift schedules — Could your warehouse function successfully if some people worked four 10 hour days? Can you offer varying hours due to demand but the number of hours worked in a week, month or year equal out over the course of 12 months? Workers who see more people on the floor during busier times and know they can maybe get an extra day off when things quiet down will appreciate the breathing room. 

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to keeping good warehouse workers where they are, but retaining good workers is paramount for your success. 

Get your management tips from Debbie’s Staffing

If you need more ideas for how to maintain a fully staffed warehouse, give Debbie’s Staffing a call today. We’re ready to offer advice or to help you find new team members to keep your warehouse humming right along. 

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