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ResourceMFG | Manufacturing Workforce Specialists
4 ways to lower retirement rates in manufacturing

Say you've done all the hard work of hiring and recruiting. Your team is perfectly rounded out and everyone is right where they belong. You're in a good place — but eventually, someone will start talking about retirement. Even the strongest manufacturing team will be impacted by retirement at some point; however, the good news is you can keep that day from coming for a good while yet.

To lower retirement rates in your manufacturing organization, you'll need to find out what your employees are thinking, worrying about and looking for — and then you'll be able to create a work environment they won't want to leave. Here are four ways to make sure you keep more employees in the fold.

1) Make sure your benefits are as attractive as possible.
Employees considering retirement need a good reason to stick around. According to SHRM, that reason may just be better benefits — especially for older workers. Healthcare, 401(k) matches and other perks can keep employees loyal for longer — and, if you do lose a few workers, you'll still be able to attract job seekers with those benefits. 

2) Treat employees like individuals.
Employees like to know they're a valued, irreplaceable part of your manufacturing company. If they don't feel like their presence matters, they may be more inclined to retire — so take some time to help each employee know they're an important member of your team. Your company culture can help with this, reinforcing the idea that even the smallest task is a critical part of the whole. You can also take opportunities to engage with employees on a more personal level— for example, putting special skills to work. All of these approaches help create an environment where workers are treated as individuals and, thus, less likely to feel stressed, repressed or ignored by their employer.

3) Give employees the chance to rest.
According to IndustryWeek, it's smart to make rest and recovery part of your work environment. This doesn't just keep employees from burning out — it also shows them you value their health, well-being and personal time. When creating ways for employees to rest, keep in mind that they'll only fully recharge if they can be completely disconnected from work — so short breaks between tasks may not be as effective as an extra day off here and there.

4) Have open conversations.
One of the worst ways your manufacturing company can be impacted by the increased retirement rates is by being blindsided. If a large number of employees retire without any warning or discussion, you're suddenly left with a significantly impacted workforce — and a lot of open positions you'll scramble to fill. Instead, make sure to keep your door open and encourage employees to have honest conversations with you. That way, if they're considering retirement, you'll have advance notice and the opportunity to take necessary action before the situation becomes difficult.

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