6 Stages of the Employee Life Cycle You Must Know

Employee life cycle

What is that single goal that HR leaders constantly strive to achieve? 

It’s that of delivering a great employee experience, of course. And it all begins with a good understanding of the stages of the employee life cycle.

ELC, or employee life cycle, maps out the entire journey of an employee and how they engage with the company they’re working for.

Understanding and analyzing the stages of the employee life cycle will help you improve the employee experience. This, in turn, will help you attract, recruit, and keep your employees engaged in a quality way.  

Deloitte’s Gen Z and Millennials Survey shows that candidates today consider several other factors than salary package when choosing to work for an organization.

Reasons to work for their current organization - Deloitte
Reasons to work for their current organization – Deloitte

You’ll be able to meet such expectations of the candidates only when you adopt new approaches and strategies to improve the various stages of the employee life cycle. 

In this post, I’ll discuss the 6 major stages of the employee life cycle and how you can optimize them to deliver a better employee experience

Let’s get started.

6 Key Stages of the Employee Life Cycle that You Should Know About

Here are the various stages of the employee lifecycle, from attracting them to offboarding them.

1. Attraction

Among the 6 stages of the employee life cycle, attraction is the initial and one of the most crucial stages. 

Why should a candidate consider working for you? What is it in your company that attracts top talents? 

As a company, you need to have clear answers to such questions. 

Take a look at Google’s mission statement – it is ambitious and aimed at making a difference at the global level. 

Why wouldn’t the top talents want to be a part of this mission?

Google mission statement
Google mission statement

Building your company’s reputation is an ongoing process, regardless of whether you have a vacancy. And here’s how you can successfully attract top candidates. 

  • Work hard to build your brand awareness. By attending seminars, conferences, and online events and contributing to leading magazines in your niche, you can create a strong brand profile.
  • Put up testimonials of your employees describing their experience of working with your business.
  • Develop a company culture that the employees are looking for. If you establish yourself as a company that really cares for its employees’ well-being, top candidates are bound to choose you. 
  • Go beyond the pay package and offer benefits that really matter to people in this day and age. Attractive facilities and a good work-life balance will go a long way in attracting top talents in your industry. 
  • Develop a sound employee advocacy strategy for your organization and ask your employees to share your recruitment posts.

Invest in quick and effective SEO tactics to rank your recruitment campaign in the SERPS.

2. Recruitment

Next, on the list of stages of the employee life cycle, is the recruitment stage. This is where you begin interacting with a candidate directly and begin the hiring process.

The recruitment stage also involves holding various rounds of interviews to hire the right candidates; this stage is all about delivering the best candidate experience. 

To make your recruitment process smooth and to acquire the best talents, you can adopt some smart techniques like:

  • Ask for referrals from your existing and ex-employees 
  • Utilize various recruitment platforms to widen your search and generate quality leads online
  • Be very specific about the kind of candidates you are looking for
  • Incorporate talent acquisition software to streamline the entire recruitment process

3. Onboarding

This stage is among the most important stages of the employee life cycle. You’d agree, too, that the first day at work can be stressful and overwhelming for any candidate.

Your focus should be on making the onboarding process as smooth and memorable as possible for your new hires. Make them feel welcome and help them settle into their roles as quickly and confidently as possible.

Some of the factors you should take care of during this stage of the employee life cycle are: 

  • Leverage apps for writing a clear and detailed job description to help them understand their roles and duties
  • Educate them about your company’s values and goals and how they can contribute
  • Conduct knowledge transfer sessions and workshops to help the candidates fit well into their roles 
  • After the induction stage, follow up with them regularly to ensure they have adjusted well with the team members
  • Prepare the right employee onboarding survey questions to know their queries related to onboarding and work procedure.

4. Development

Among all the stages of the employee life cycle, this one’s completely focused on the employee, and it comes into the picture once the employee onboarding is done.

What does the employee require enjoying their job, be efficient, and improving their performance? 

The answer can be found in this Gartner survey, which says that building critical skills and competencies is a top priority for HR leaders.

Top priorities for HR leaders in 2021 - Gartner
Top priorities for HR leaders in 2021 – Gartner

To ensure quality employee development, you can focus on the following:

  • Providing internal training 
  • Encouraging your employees to acquire new skills externally
  • Setting the roadmap for career progress
  • Recognizing their achievements and rewarding them

As you create a growth-oriented atmosphere at work, not only will your employees grow, but your company will grow with them, too. It’ll motivate them too, as they’ll see that the company is investing in them too.

5. Retention

Retention is one of the key stages of the employee life cycle where the employer adopts a series of actions to retain top talents within the company. 

A good retention strategy is a balance between keeping your employees happy and challenging them enough that they don’t feel stagnant in a particular role.

And how can you do that?

Here are some proven tactics: 

  • Conduct regular evaluations
  • Provide constructive feedback
  • Offer professional and technical support to overcome challenges
  • Focus on what motivates them
  • Keep their morale up by conducting corporate activities that boost employee engagement.
  • Motivate them with your rewards and benefits

With an effective retention strategy such as, you can reduce the turnover rate and optimize employee spending too.

6. Separation or Offboarding

The final one among the 6 stages of the employee life cycle is separation. Irrespective of the reason for employee separation, be it a better job, retirement, or some personal reason, the HR leaders should make the offboarding process as smooth and positive as possible.

You should ensure that the employees leaving your company do not cause much disruption to the way your organization works.

Be it data transfer, knowledge transfer, or financial settlement, make them as effortless as possible. Even when employees leave your organization, you can use an active campaign alternative tool to track emails from them and stay connected with them periodically. A well-planned, positive offboarding process will also increase the credibility of your company.

Are You Ready to Optimize the Stages of the Employee Life Cycle?

What makes successful business teams different from their competitors is the way they lead and treat their employees.

When your HR team optimizes the stages of the employee life cycle, you will not only be able to hire top talents for your company but also have a happy team passionately working toward your growth.

Which of the tips did you find helpful? Have you adopted specific recruitment or retention techniques that have helped your company gain employee trust? Do share your thoughts and opinions with us in the comments section below.

Feature image source: FreePik Premium

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