Kenco Boosts Employee Morale, Lowers Turnover 92%


Increasing labor market challenges and the departure of the General Manager in 2016 caused problems with the site culture, hurting employee morale. A high temp-to-perm ratio and excessive overtime were creating a lack of camaraderie and a high burnout rate. As a result, the 2016 turnover rate was 450%. Kenco went to the customer with concerns and garnered its approval to enact immediate changes to improve the work culture and slow down employee churn.


With a new General Manager onboard in February 2017, Kenco’s first step was to perform one-on-one interviews with every employee at the site to discuss issues and suggestions for improvement. The consensus among employees was that they did not feel respected, there were no avenues for employee development, accountability was inconsistent, and they felt overworked. To address the most urgent issues, Kenco and the new General Manager developed a comprehensive, budget-neutral action plan:


Wage increases were made official in September 2017, the temp-to-perm strategy was shifted to a direct-hire approach, and temps were completely converted to full-time employees by January. This included six internal promotions. Volume spikes are now proactively managed to avoid reliance on temp labor and excessive overtime. With morale and engagement up, the employee suggestion board saw a dramatic increase in participation. Most importantly, turnover dropped 225 percentage points from 2016 to 2017, with another 150 percentage-point drops expected in 2018.

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