Employee Engagement: How To Retain Employees Through AI and Statistics

As part of the engagement series, this article gives insight into how Employee Engagement can result in or decrease of voluntary turnover. 

“Voluntary Turnover is the type of turnover that occurs when employees willingly choose to leave their positions.

Voluntary Turnover Measurement

In the article Key Metrics for Measuring Employee Engagement, extracted by Bob Kelleher from the book Employee Engagement for Dummies; the writer emphasizes the importance of measuring engagement. Kelleher identifies that voluntary turnover has always been used as a golden measure for engagement. Although, over time, the loopholes within turnover have been identified. Nothing much has been done to dethrone this metric from being used as the first choice. Since voluntary turnover cannot be fully measured beforehand, it presents the company with more stumbling blocks than solutions. To determine 100 percent voluntary turnover for each employee, HR has to wait until the employee has left the company. As a result, companies using this metric, get outdated statistics.

Source: Great Place to Work

The Cost of Voluntary Turnover

High employee turnover results in serious financial losses for the company. Josh Bersin, a business expert of Bersin by Deloitte argues that it takes approximately 2 full years to train a new staff member to reach the same levels of productivity as an existing employee. In fact, studies have shown that recruiting, hiring, training, developing, and engaging a new employee is equal to one year’s salary of that position. Take an organization with 5,000 employees with an average salary of Euro 60,000 and a turnover rate of 10%, and you will have the annual cost of voluntary turnover of (Euro 300,000,000 X 10% =) Euro 30,000,000. Decreasing the turnover rate by as much as 50% would already mean a cost reduction of euro 15,000,000 per year!

Improving Voluntary Turnover

To improve this metric and fully comprehend the number of times that an employee voluntarily left, it might be necessary to revise the organization’s exit interviews. Another discrepancy that might arise from the use of voluntary turnover in retention is the fact that differently engaged employees show changing patterns. That is to say, highly engaged employees voluntarily leave an organization less frequently than less engaged employees.

The Power of Engaged Employees

The 2011 Gallup Poll showed that Organizations with highly engaged employees have 25%-65% lower turnover. According to Konrad Kopczynsky, the product lead at Practical Insights “every 10 percent improvement in commitment can decrease an employee’s probability of departure by 9 percent.” Such an observation makes it necessary to constantly retrieve data on Employee Engagement to help check how employees are doing within the organization. 

Predicting Voluntary Turnover

Engagement data in combination with HR data can help shade light on the number of employees leaving the organization after different amounts of time and check the corresponding department oppositions. Using statistics and artificial intelligence such as Einstein, mined data can be used to determine voluntary turnover levels in relation to engagement. These levels can then be compared to means and methods employed by the manager or said team leader of the former employee. Using such manoeuvres can result in a show of patterns; and where possible, a particular set of names can be linked back to the reason why people leave the organization. Remember, people don’t leave jobs, they leave managers.


It is argued by many that Voluntary Turnover cannot be fully measured beforehand. We argue differently. We believe in measuring Employee Engagement throughout the year as a way to predict Voluntary Turnover. Using statistics and artificial intelligence, mined data can be used to determine voluntary turnover levels in relation to Engagement. Since it is expensive to find and replace an employee once they leave, the best way to avoid accumulating unnecessary costs is to introduce forms and practices that will engage employees. As organizations with highly engaged employees have a much lower turnover, best practices to timely engage employees can save organizations from financial loss and retraining throughout the year.

Written by: Aleksander Tchernov