Millions of Americans have quit their jobs over the past couple of years, a phenomenon that has been dubbed the "Great Resignation." Businesses both large and small are having trouble hiring and retaining valuable employees. If you are worried about losing team members, please keep these tips in mind.

1. Be Flexible

Flexibility is one of the most sought-after qualities of a job in 2022. The more flexible you are, the more attractive you will be as an employer and the harder it will be for employees to leave. For example, if your employees are able to work from home and set their own schedules, they won’t be easily tempted to leave for a company where they have to commute and work a more traditional nine-to-five job. Some positions may not allow for that level of flexibility, but when there is room to work around employee needs, try to do so.

2. Consider Both Salaries and Bonuses

Pay is certainly a major factor in employee retention. You must pay competitively, but that doesn't mean only wages. Bonuses are also good motivators.

"You have to pay people enough to take the issue of money off the table," according to Harvard Business Review.1 "So, in addition to updating your overall compensation package, consider offering employees one-time bonuses, helping them pay down their student loans, and providing them with work-from-home stipends. An added benefit of re-leveling compensation is that it gives you an opportunity to detect and correct pay inequities for people of color and women, including mothers of young children. We are also seeing some companies offering ‘boomerangs,' which are bringing back people who have recently departed by offering to immediately vest them in long-term compensation plans."

3. Offer Promotions and Growth Opportunities

Employees want to know that they have room to get ahead. They don't want to fill a position where they are destined to do the exact same thing for the exact same pay for their entire career. Give them opportunities to advance and get promotions if they perform well. This will not only give them a reason to stick around, but it will show others that they, too, can work their way up with hard work.

Growth opportunities may also come in the form of training and optional courses that enable employees to take on new roles.

4. Look to Perks and Benefits

Benefits like health insurance and 401(k) packages are coveted by many jobseekers, and current employees who are used to having them are also less likely to leave, particularly if you are able to offer more-than-competitive plans. The same goes for paid time off, paid family leave, and student loan assistance. Perks like gym memberships, free snacks or meals, mental health days, pet-friendly office spaces, etc. are also enticing to many workers.

5. Encourage and Listen to Feedback

You can learn a lot about what your employees want by simply listening to them. Speak with them regularly to get a sense of what they like and dislike about their job.

"Annual reviews should not be the only time you communicate with your employees," says TrakStar's Jen McKenzie.2 "You should create an environment where they feel comfortable approaching you with issues as needed. You can also schedule group meetings where the team as a whole makes recommendations for changes and improvements."

6. Evaluate the Team

You should regularly evaluate your entire team to determine not only who should get a raise or promotion, but who needs to make changes to improve efficiency, productivity, and/or quality. As Jim Collins pointed out in Good to Great, “The executives who ignited the transformations from good to great did not first figure out where to drive the bus and then get people to take it there. No, they first got the right people on the bus (and the wrong people off the bus) and then figured out where to drive it.”3

7. Maintain a Safe Work Environment

Workplace safety has always been crucial, but in the pandemic era, new considerations have emerged and have played a key role in why so many workers have left the workforce over the past couple of years. Employees must feel safe every day when they go to work, and if you can't provide that type of environment, retention will likely suffer.

To retain employees, you need to provide more than just a salary. With so many businesses in need of workers, it's in your best interest to reevaluate what you have to offer as a place to work.