Under-employment has become one of the major causes of the high employee turn-over rate in both public and private sector organisations in recent times. What happens is that people have no option than to take a “low class” jobs for survival or as a spring board to better jobs in the future as a result of high unemployment rate that has bedeviled the job market the world over. Under-employment and high turnover rate are bedmates because the former influences the later most of the times.

In the case of underemployment, a worker is employed but not in the desired capacity, whether in terms of compensation, hours or level of skill and experience. For this very reason, the worker is quick to move or jump unto another job that presents better opportunities and helps them  utilize their abilities and competencies. This will therefore lead to an organisation losing such employees.

The effect of employee turnover on organisations cannot be overemphasized. Besides poor and inequitable remunerations associated with underemployment, which induces high turn-over rate, employers in their effort to mitigate (if not curb) high turnover rate must also place a lot of emphasis on the following:

  • Job role:  Most recruitment is done without first going through proper job analysis. It is imperative to collect information about the duties, responsibilities, necessary skills, outcomes, and work environment of a particular job. It is also very necessary to have a thorough job analysis before proceeding with recruitment.  This will give you ample information as to whether to go ahead with the recruitment and also give you the opportunity to select the candidate who is best fit for the job at hand.
  • Applicant’s interest and passion:  It is said that when you do something you love, you do it to the best of your ability.  Due to the large number of unemployment in Ghana, most job applicants apply for job they will not have accepted under a different circumstance.  It is therefore the duty of the interviewer to be able to detect such people and take them out of the competition.  There is nothing as worrisome as having a disengaged employee. Not only will their attitudes affect others but this will also affect the bottom-line of the organisation
  • The job must be challenging enough: Human beings do better when they are challenged and it is very fulfilling to try to solve a complex situation in your organization.  The job should be challenging enough to give the employee a reason to always get up and come to work.  Even though most jobs are routine, HR managers must conduct researches and find out what makes their employees tick. It is possible that an employee will perform better in another department; why not swap roles.
  • Allow room for initiatives:  Some jobs are so routine and regulated that it does not give room for personal initiatives. Allowing room for initiatives gives the employee some kind of fulfillment on the job and it is also motivating to see your ideas being implemented. Job roles should always make room for employees to use their initiatives in their day to day activities and in ways that are beneficial to the organisation.

Underemployment and its associated high turnover rate of employees should not be taken for granted; it poses a threat to business information security and loss of skillful labour to business competitors. Other challenges include more time on the learning curve and therefore less productivity.

By: Solace Obuor


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