Retaining faculty can help you retain students

Experts say reducing turnover can save money, improve student success

A recent survey shows that employee recruitment and retention are major challenges for colleges and universities, Leila Meyer reports for Campus Technology. 

The survey was conducted by Human Capital Media Research and Advisory Group in collaboration with Cornerstone OnDemand and Ellucian. Researchers collected responses from more than 450 faculty and staff members representing both public and private colleges and universities.

Many respondents reveal that their institutions struggle with employee recruitment and retention:

  • 69% struggle to retain high-performing staff;
  • 62% struggle to source top staff;
  • 61% struggle to source top faculty; and
  • 59% struggle to retain high-performing faculty.

Respondents largely agree that doing a better job engaging faculty and staff could improve retention, but many say that engagement is a challenge. About 41% report high turnover among staff and 27% report high turnover among faculty. Around 39% say they do not offer any employee engagement opportunities, including professional development, mentoring, or flexible work options.

Mike Bollinger, global AVP of thought leadership and advisory services for Cornerstone OnDemand, says, "One definite conclusion we can draw from the results of this survey is the need for continuous learning and development for higher education employees."

Though the main focus in higher ed institutions has to do with engagement and retention of students rather than faculty and staff, Bollinger says that it's important to recognize that the faculty and staff "create the student experience" (Meyer, Campus Technology, 9/22).

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