Retaining Key Staff in a Competitive Association Landscape

Oct 30, 2023

The need for associations to retain their talented and dedicated staff has never been more critical. Skilled association staff are in high demand, and with a limited talent pool available, losing key employees can significantly impact an associations’ performance, reputation, and ability to achieve its purpose. Success often hinges on the expertise and commitment of our key people, making it vital to prioritise staff retention strategies.

Here are a few practical steps that can help you retain your valuable team members in an increasingly competitive landscape.

  • Competitive Compensation: It’s important to ensure that your association offers salaries that are competitive within the industry. Benchmarking salaries against industry standards will help you attract and retain talented professionals. Regular salary reviews and adjustments, in line with market trends, demonstrate your recognition of employees’ contributions and value their expertise.
  • Professional Growth Opportunities: Invest in the growth and development of your staff by providing ample learning and career advancement opportunities. Encourage participation in industry conferences, workshops, and training programs, and offer support for professional certifications. Prioritising personal and professional growth not only boosts employee engagement but also fosters a culture of continuous learning within your association.
  • Recognition and Rewards: Show appreciation for your staff’s hard work and accomplishments to create a positive work environment. Implement recognition programs that celebrate achievements, milestones, and exceptional performance. By acknowledging your employees’ contributions, you nurture a sense of loyalty, commitment, and motivation.
  • Work-Life Balance: Emphasise the importance of work-life balance in today’s workplace. Strive to create a flexible and supportive work environment that allows employees to manage their personal commitments alongside their professional responsibilities. If not doing so already, consider offering remote work options, flexible schedules, and wellness initiatives that promote a healthy integration of work and personal life.
  • Career Development and Advancement: Foster a culture of growth within your association by providing clear career paths and opportunities for advancement. Encourage regular conversations about career goals and aspirations, and invest in mentoring and coaching programs to support employees’ professional journey. When employees see a future within the association, they are more likely to stay committed and engaged.
  • Employee Feedback and Inclusion: Cultivate open communication channels and actively seek feedback from your staff. Involve employees in decision-making processes, policies, and initiatives. By valuing their input, you empower them to feel a sense of ownership and inclusion, which significantly contributes to job satisfaction and retention.
  • Emphasise Association Purpose: Reinforce the purpose of your association to inspire and engage your staff. Clearly articulate how their work contributes to the bigger picture and provide opportunities for employees to connect with the impact of their efforts. When employees feel connected to a meaningful cause, they are more likely to remain committed and passionate about their roles.

In a competitive talent landscape, associations must proactively retain their key staff members. By implementing the strategies outlined above, you can create an environment that attracts, nurtures, and retains top talent, ensuring the continued success of your organisation.

Enterprise Care is Australia’s largest association salary benchmarking resource. Every year they collate data from associations throughout Australia to update their very nifty online salary benchmarking tool. They are currently looking for associations to contribute to their 5 minute FY24 salary survey – and will provide an exclusive FY24 insights report to any association that contributes the CEO position. Reach out to Enterprise Care directly if you’d like more information.