Staff Retention in Non Profit Organizations

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Staff Retention in Non-Profit Organizations:
Reducing Turnover by Developing Successful Human Resources Management Strategies Willa Haskins
Empire State College

Abstract
Staff turnover and retention rates are concerns for all employers, especially in the current economy (Opportunity, 2010). However, research and statistics show that the non-profit sector consistently experiences high turnover rates (Mizell, 2005). High turnover rates during economic hard times can have a serious detrimental effect on non-profit businesses. In this study, we reviewed several online articles and reports that provided us with key information about turnover in non-profit organizations. Research revealed that the average turnover rate over the last three years for all non-profits is around 16% (Bares, 2011) and though that figure is close to the total workforce average during the current economy, 37% of the non-profits that participated in the Opportunity Knocks survey reported that staff retention is a problem for their organization (Opportunity, 2010). The focus of this research was to identify the major causes of staff turnover within non-profit organizations and, with that information in hand, develop a successful strategic plan for the recruitment and retention of employees.

Staff Retention in Non-Profit Organizations:
Reducing Turnover by Developing Successful Human Resources Management Strategies As a Human Resources professional at a local non-profit organizations, I have learned the hard way that staff retention is an issue that plagues the non-profit sector, regardless of the services provided. Excessive turnover affects the quality of services provided, increases critical incidents, and increases overtime costs of additional staffing. It is important for Human Resources professionals to understand the root causes of staff turnover in order to develop human resource management strategies that will significantly reduce turnover and its effect on the organization. The purpose of this research is to examine in-depth the issue of turnover and staff retention in non-profit organizations, to identify the major causes of turnover and to develop human resources management strategies to reduce turnover and retain and recruit employees. Studies have shown that, historically, non-profit organizations have experienced a higher than average turnover rate, especially those that provide human services. Research has shown that the top reasons for this are as follows: job dissatisfaction, poor supervision (Wenger, 2011), lack of appropriate skills and qualifications, and non-competitive salaries (Opportunity, 2010). Each of these causal factors will be examined along with the corresponding concept studied in our online course. Once the causes have been examined, the question on how to mitigate turnover will be addressed. When troubleshooting for solutions to these causes, research revealed that ideas about how to properly address turnover in the non-profit arena were numerous. Surveys and studies only focused on one or two causal factors at a time. Very little research covered all the major causal factors of turnover in one study. This research will attempt to do just that. The top major causal factors will be examined and a strategic plan will be developed that addresses each of the causal factors. I believe this plan will enable non-profit organization to reduce turnover and/or lessen its effects, increase the retention of employees, and aid the organization in recruiting qualified staff that will stay for the long run. Background and Significance

As a Human Resources Assistant at a non-profit human services organization, I have seen the effects of turnover in our local agencies. Many times staff will abandon their jobs, leaving without notifying anyone, or they will come to work their first day and never come back. Some staff start looking for new jobs as soon as they come to work for us. Many express their...
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