The new year is a key time for hiring managers and job seekers alike, with January commonly regarded as the most popular month for workers to make the move to a new job. While this presents a great opportunity for those looking for new candidates to join their marketing departments, it also means managers must take extra care to retain existing talent in order to achieve their marketing goals for 2020. No matter how big or small your marketing function is, here’s how you can prevent your star marketeers from leaving:

Use realistic KPIs

Key performance indications (KPIs) aren’t just for sales people. They are critical for effective marketing functions, which are becoming increasingly-data driven in the digital age. Well-planned and implemented marketing strategies should have trackable outcomes to indicate whether you have achieved your goals, whether that’s for a major quarterly campaign or a simple social media post.

One way to approach this is by identifying channel-specific KPIs. For example, content KPIs could be around bounce rate, content shares and conversions, while PPC KPIs could be around click-through rate and cost per acquisition. Consider focusing on rates and growth instead of total numbers, as numbers will always go up and down, while rates can give you a clearer indication of success over set periods.

Used correctly, KPIs can foster an environment of improvement and ongoing education within your marketing team. However, unrealistic and unachievable KPIs can lead to low morale and loss of motivation. Make sure your goals are clearly defined, communicated and practical for your marketing function to achieve.

Be transparent with your team

As well as communicating KPIs with your marketing team, it’s important to be transparent about your business goals, objectives and performance. With just 42% of employees understanding what their organisation’s vision, values and mission are, it’s clear there is some way to go for managers in terms of communicating with their teams.

Once you have set your KPIs, make a point of reporting back on them – both to your marketing team directly and the wider business. Transparency in the workplace improves trust, builds relationships and boosts productivity, so schedule regular meetings, update emails and brainstorming sessions to share ideas, report on performance and discuss how you can better work together to hit targets.

Ensure internal and external fairness

People expect to be paid a fair rate for their line of work, job title and experience, regardless of the industry they work in. This is true of marketing professionals, who expect to be paid equivalent to their colleagues (internal fairness) and in line with market rates in similar fields (external fairness). While the average UK salary sits at £28,677, this varies enormously across the country and depending on job title and industry. Sites like PayScale and Glassdoor can help you – and your employees – establish an average rate for certain jobs and areas, so it pays to do your research and ensure you’re rewarding your staff appropriately.

Be flexible

Flexibility is one of the most importance workplace benefits you can offer at the moment, especially when recruiting millennial talent. In fact, nearly a third of millennials would prefer flexible working to a pay rise, with the vast majority of women saying that flexible working makes a job more appealing to them. According to YouGov, 70% of workers want the option of flexibility, with the majority of people saying it would improve their wellbeing and workplace satisfaction. In order to attract and retain the leading marketing talent, consider offering your valued staff the ability to flex their hours – whether that’s starting earlier or later, working from home occasionally or doing shift patterns that better suit their lifestyles.

Avoid micromanaging

Marketers can be both creative and autonomous, often preferring to put their heads down to work through a new idea or concept. To this end, micromanagement should be avoided where possible. With more than half of employees saying they’ve worked for a micromanager before – and this management style one of the most commonly cited reasons for leaving a job – overbearing bosses can be the death knell for marketing teams. If you have a competent team skilled in their areas, trust them to perform their work well on a day-to-day level and save the check-ins for scheduled, in-person catch ups. Empower your marketing team to take responsibility for their own work and KPIs, and you’ll likely find they’re a more productive unit.

Show them the future

Marketing teams can be a small part of a bigger business function, but that doesn’t mean roles should be restricted by scope or size. Most employees will want opportunities to be trained and developed, even if there’s not immediate potential for a promotion within your company. In a market where two in three workers quit due to a lack of learning and development opportunities, you can’t afford to rest on your laurels when it comes to training. All marketing members should have a development plan and achievable goals with defined outcomes. When people have something to work towards, they’re more engaged and likely to perform their best work for your business.

Get it right the first time with BMS

One of the best ways to prevent your marketing talent from leaving is by hiring the right people in the first place. At BMS, we can help you to identify and attract top marketing candidates to help you achieve your business goals. Contact us to see how we can help you.