Retaining Warehouse Workers Isn’t Just About Pay

While all workers want to be paid well for the work they do, pay is rarely the only deciding factor when it comes to retention. When you’re looking to stabilize turnover within a warehouse environment, it’s important to think outside the (pay) box. 

But if workers these days aren’t solely looking at pay as a determining factor, what are they looking for? Let’s explore some benefits that the modern-day worker is looking for in a warehouse setting.

4 Non-Pay Differentiators Warehouse Workers Are Looking For

While it’s certainly important to make smart, effective moves when hiring in a tight labor market, it’s even more essential to keep existing workers satisfied and promote their well-being.

But employee satisfaction looks different today than it did a decade ago — and in fact, with the pandemic and The Great Resignation in the mix, workers are looking for something different today than they were even a year ago.

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Not sure where to begin? Start here:

1. A Safe Work Environment
Warehouses are one of the most hazardous work environments, with potential safety hazards present in nearly every aspect of the work. Before asking workers to commit to putting in time each day in the warehouse setting, invest time and money into ensuring the space is safe. Employees want to know their lives and limbs aren’t at stake.

Pay particular attention to areas of the warehouse space identified by OSHA as distinct safety hazards, including forklifts, docks, conveyors, chemicals, and charging stations. You can also assist the individual employees themselves by promoting ergonomic working conditions to help them avoid repetitive motion injuries or musculoskeletal conditions.

2. Flexibility & Autonomy
While many types of businesses have incorporated remote work or hybrid offerings into their operations, that’s not possible in the warehouse environment. With that said, though, you can still offer your employees some level of flexibility.

This may include offering less rigid schedules, rather than simply categorizing employees into one shift or another for the long run. But it can also include giving workers more flexibility and autonomy in how they perform their work. While it’s essential for work to be conducted in a way that’s safe, allowing for some give-and-take in processes can be helpful. 

Even if employees don’t have the autonomy to make these decisions and tweaks to process, it’s important to give them the ability to share their thoughts on what could make their work more efficient.

3. Opportunities to Climb the Ladder
Very few employees — in any role, in any industry — want to feel boxed in to a single position, with no ability to advance from it. All employees, even those hired into entry-level positions, should be provided with details about how they can eventually be promoted into other roles.

This advancement won’t look the same for every employee. Some may have a natural inclination toward leadership, but others may simply be looking for something different that’s more suited to their individual talents. 

Knowing that these opportunities exist and being offered the appropriate training and guidance to take advantage of them can be a difference-maker.

4. Skin in the Game
While some employees may simply want to clock in and out in an unobtrusive way, many employees today want to feel like their perspective and input is valued by management.

That’s why it is important in today’s workforce to give employees a way to raise their voices and feel like they have “skin in the game.” A feedback program like WorkHound that allows workers to provide real-time questions and concerns can help.

“Just like truck drivers, warehouse workers can often feel like a number,” says Cheney Tardio, Director of Customer Success at WorkHound. “But when you’re asking them to help make your company better and letting them know that their opinion is valued, it can be a huge difference-maker. It means workers aren’t simply clocking in and clocking out, but that they actually have a voice in how things are done. They may not have a physical seat at the table when decisions are made, but they know their influence matters.” 

Want to set up your warehouse employees with a tool to share problems and concerns? Sign up for a free demo to learn how WorkHound can help!