Study shows flexible hours important to retention

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Close to half of Wisconsin business owners and executives recently surveyed believe that offering flexible work hours is among the best strategies to retain top talent.

The finding was detailed in a BMO Harris Bank study released today. The study, conducted at both state and national levels, consulted business owners and executives about their hiring plans, their thoughts on effective employee retention, and the traits they seek in young job candidates.

The study published today is part of BMO Harris Bank’s ongoing efforts to keep pace with how executives feel about key business topics, such as their economic sentiment and their business investment plans.

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While 47 percent of Wisconsin respondents see flexible hours as a critical component of workplace retention, 35 percent of leaders surveyed see opportunities for continual education and training as necessary for keeping top talent. Thirty percent believe that increased health and dental benefits are necessary, and 27 percent believe increased paid vacation time is an effective employee retention strategy.

“The Wisconsin marketplace is a fiercely competitive one, and there is a real battle for top talent,” said Jeff Ticknor, managing director and head of commercial banking for BMO Harris Bank in Wisconsin. “Business owners know that an effective employee retention strategy is as important as ever.”

The study also revealed that 47 percent of state business owners and executives surveyed feel today’s college graduates are less prepared for the workforce, compared to 20 years ago.

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In the search for qualified junior employees, surveyed executives value proven skillsets and take personality traits and work experience into strong consideration.

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