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Employee Engagement & Retention

A benefits administration business had a large in-house (“captive”) center in India, and was suffering low employee engagement scores and employee attrition rates above 30%, all of which resulted in high error rates and low customer satisfaction scores. Greg instituted four major changes:

  1. Competency training and leadership development for managers at all levels, from Team Lead to Director, to ensure they had the appropriate people management and employee development skills.  

  2. Six levels of domain expertise, each with its own set of training & certification.

  3. Four titles and corresponding salary grades for individual contributors, each with its own objective criteria for promotion, and tied to the six levels of domain expertise.

  4. A monthly management review of attrition risk, employee by employee, along with a ranking of their criticality to the organization.  A color-coding system was deployed so managers could easily see which employees they needed to take action on to prevent attrition.

  5. A more disciplined use of merit and bonus to address pay equity gaps among high performers.


The result of this multi-pronged initiative was:

  1. Lower overall employee attrition

  2. Extremely low attrition among top performers

  3. Much higher employee engagement scores

  4. Lower error rates

  5. Higher productivity

  6. Lower overall costs, due to the very high retention of the most skilled and productive employees, and lower recruiting and training costs.

  7. Improved reputation of the India team with their US counterparts, especially appreciation for the certified domain experts, as this allowed the US team to select designated domain experts in India for special assignments and trips to the US for added training, which further improved engagement and retention among the top performers.

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