Norfolk & Suffolk Care Support Ltd

Retaining your workforce

While pay and location are important factors for staff, most successful managers know that keeping staff happy and motivated at work is complex. Pay and benefits are not usually the most important incentives to stay with an employer. People work for different reasons and are motivated by different rewards.

Employers with good staff retention have considered the workplace culture and have effective leadership. They ensure the culture is positive and developmental.

An organisation with effective leadership, a positive culture and a good reputation will have fewer problems with staff retention.


Some ideas to help improve retention:

Effective leadership

  • Managers and supervisors have continuous professional development
  • Policies and procedures are constantly reviewed and improved
  • All levels of staff are included in discussions and decision-making
  • Staff are seen as individuals rather than a collective resource
  • A fair and consistent approach is used for decision-making and problem-solving

Positive culture

  • Senior management have an ‘open door’ policy and ensure that there is two-way communication in a variety of ways
  • All staff have access to professional and personal development
  • Staff are recognised for excellent work at meetings or in organisation newsletters, eg ‘Care Worker of the Month’
  • A suggestion scheme provides rewards for any new ideas that are implemente.
  • Staff, as well as service users and their relatives, are included in annual satisfaction surveys
  • Sign up to the Social Care Commitment and include all staff in development activities
  • Staff feel valued

Staff motivation

  • Staff are given a degree of autonomy and flexibility over how they carry out tasks within the constraints of care plans
  • Staff are encouraged to give input when care plans are updated
  • Supervisions are used to explore possibilities for career development within the organisation
  • Praise is meaningful and used appropriately. If everyone is praised for anything that they do, it becomes meaningless
  • People are motivated in different ways. It is important to know your staff. Take the time to find out about their aspirations. Ask them what they prefer. Time off, a small bonus or extra responsibility

Skills for Care: Creating a positive workplace culture

Workplace culture is the character and personality of your organisation. It's made up of your organisation's leadership, values, traditions and beliefs, and the behaviours and attitudes of the people in it. Having a positive workplace culture is vital to delivering high quality care and support. 

This toolkit from Skills for Care explains what workplace culture is and how you can develop a positive one in your organisation. It’s for adult social care employers of all sizes, including individual employers.


Noroflk Care Awards Skills for Care Accolades DFN Matrix