Chapter III: What IS the connection between productivity, turnover and job match?

Sept. 30, 2008

A study published by Harvard Business Review indicated that normal performance indicators (education, experience, sex, gender, race, age) are NOT what cause a person to fit their job and become a superior performer with an increase in productivity and a decrease in turnover. The study (360,000 employees over 20 years in 14 industries) concluded the factors that cause a person to fit their job are how well the respective person matches the needs of each job with regards to: mental capabilities, behavioral traits and occupational interests.

As we all know, success in any job is related to how well the person does the job. However, the measurement of success in any job (sales volume and/or profit are commonly used measures along with inventory value, orders filled completely, etc) does not tell us WHY someone was successful or not, they just tell us IF the person was successful or not. How well any person does in any job is DIRECTLY related to the learning skills required by the job, the behavior necessary in that organization, and the interests needed to stick with the job COMPARED to the capability of the respective employee. In most companies, top performers have more productivity (at least 60 percent) and less turnover (up to 300 percent less) than average workers. Thus the connection between Job Fit and productivity and turnover is clear: the better the job fit, the higher the productivity and the lower the turnover. Since top performers capabilities CAN be measured with regards to learning, behavior and interests in any job, a job pattern can be established that indicates what the job requires.

Once the pattern is established (every job in every company is UNIQUE), potential candidates (or struggling incumbents) can be compared to the pattern to determine job match.If a high job match is present, productivity goes up and turnover goes down because the employees LITERALLY fit their jobs. If a low job match is present, productivity goes down and turnover goes up because employees cant do the job (mental), cant do the job the right way (behavior), or wont do the job (lack of interest). Unfortunately, an interview is the most common hiring process today, which finds a top performer less than 15 percent of the time. In other words, the process fails to find the top performer you are looking for more than 85 percent of the time. Talk about a dysfunctional process! If you are coming to St. Louis for NAMA National in mid October, I would recommend you plan to check out the HOT TOPIC presentations that are presented during show hours at the main NAMA both. You can be face to face with experts that CAN help your business, and ask them the questions you always want to ask....but never have the chance. Coming next quarter: how your hiring process impacts your bottom line!

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