17 Sep 2013

High staff turnover a worry - surveys

7:18 pm on 17 September 2013

Two global surveys show New Zealand is one of the most dynamic countries to do business but that's threatened by an extremely high staff turnover rate.

The consultancy firm Grant Thornton has ranked New Zealand fourth out of sixty major economies in its annual Global Dynamism Index released today.

But the Kelly Global Workforce Index, which was also published today, shows New Zealand has the fifth highest employee turnover of 31 countries.

More than half of the New Zealand workers surveyed say they've changed jobs in the last year and a further 30 percent say they've thought about doing so.

A partner at Grant Thornton, Greg Thompson, says that New Zealand has always rated highly for it infrastucture and the way that businesses operated here with a minimum of bureaucracy and red-tape.

New Zealand workers were also highly-rated, but the country did less well on training those workers, and improving the skill-base underpinning productivity gains.

"If you don't retain your people, there is a huge financial cost in finding additional people, training them up and integrating them into your business culture," Mr Thompson says.

"The longer that you can hold onto your people, the bigger the financial payback's going to be".

The country also had a poor record of investment in technology, even though it did well when it did invest in technology.