High levels of employee churn have been standard in the financial services industry for years. Recently, those already high levels are on the rise. Why are employees leaving their roles at increasing rates? Here is an overview of what attrition looks like in the financial services industry and what companies can do to curb it.

Employee attrition in financial services currently sits around 19% – higher than the average across similar industries, which closer to 17% according to a 2016 survey. A PwC survey explores how millennials, now the largest generation in the workforce, are the ones leaving in large numbers. Not only do 42% of millennials with jobs in financial services say they are open to new opportunities – 48% are actively seeking for different roles. Moreover, just 10% of those surveyed intended to stay with their current company.

Why is Attrition Rising?

Work culture has changed, and it represents the driving impetus behind millennials leaving for other roles. A Gallup survey shows that only 29% of millennials are actively engaged in their job. This means that those 71% of employees unengaged feel no real connection to their role or to their company, which makes leaving much easier.  Additionally, millennials tend to look for a certain degree of freedom in their work environment – whether that means finding an optimal work-life balance are having a position that allows for remote work.

Ways to Combat Churn

Many financial services companies are starting to acknowledge the shifting values of their workforce. Some strategies can help appeal to millennials and their personal and professional goals. Across industries, international experience and the option to live and work abroad is attractive to 88% of people surveyed by MoveHub. Also, for financial services companies with global offices, encouraging overseas positions to their workforce can help boost engagement and desire to remain with the company.

Good company culture also helps with employee retention. This can include a strong internal support or mentorship system to ensure new employees have the resources they need. Additionally, benefits are important – especially to millennials who value better health insurance over a higher salary. Other services like help with relocation and settlement and wellness programs all appeal to millennials and can create reasons for them to stay.

Other Tactics

Although harder to control internally for companies, company reputation matters to millennials. The 2008 financial crisis affected how workers view the financial services industry. Also, it has resulted in job seekers looking for companies in good standing. Likewise, PwC reports that of millennials with jobs in financial service, 21% want to get away from the industry because of the negative perception. So, when employees accept roles in financial services, some of those new employees already are thinking of their next move.

Companies within financial services can modify policies and implement changes that appeal to their workforce. Yet, policy alone will not help retain the high performers. Understanding pain points and reasons why your employees are dissatisfied with their role are critical in keeping workers. AnswerOn has experience helping companies tackle their attrition problems. One tactic we offer is a client Virtual Focus Group, which is a more helpful tool than surveys. While surveys like the ones cited in this post can provide an overview of issues, they cannot reveal the full picture. With a focus group, our team is able to get a higher level of engagement with workers. So we can discover more of the “why” behind responses and stop at-risk employees from leaving.