Is Employee Turn Over Bad?

August 26, 2011

I was recently asked the question, “Do you think all turnover is bad? Why?”

My response was as follows:

  • In some cases, turnover is bad.  Examples:  A bad hire, a poor performer who couldn’t be improved, losing a good employee over a personality conflict, etc.  The process of hiring and training employees is expensive both in time and money.  Losing an employee unnecessarily is costly and disruptive.
  • Turn over can be positive because it is beneficial for a company to reflect on the vacated position and reassess the appropriate skill set and responsibilities required to perform at a high level in the role.  It is also a good time to assess whether the head count is necessary to replace (spread responsibilities to other employees, eliminate or automate responsibilities, etc.).
What are your thoughts?  Do you have an example of when employee turn over was extremely negative or positive?

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