New 2008 Turnover Stats by Industry Just Released: How Did Your Company Compare?

Rebecca Regan
April 7, 2009 — 3,216 views  
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Flashback to January of 2008. It began well, but dramatically disintegrated over time to end in a dismal financial state that has affected each of us in some way. Certainly it made managing HR much more challenging than it is under normal business scenarios. We know that millions of jobs were eliminated as the year progressed, with the fallout of significant job losses spilling over into 2009.

As the economy deteriorated, job security became of paramount importance to employees. Towards the end of the year, employees became much more reluctant to seek other employment and had diminished opportunity to do so in view of fewer job openings. Employers found themselves in the diametrically opposed position of laying off employees while still hiring for specialized jobs. Even so, naturally there was still employee turnover in all industries.

How did your company compare to the average 2008 turnover statistics for your industry? Compdata, a company that provides high quality salary surveys (and whose surveys I frequently use in conducting market pricing studies for my clients) recently released their findings for 2008 turnover by industry. Read the tables listed below, provided courtesy of Compata Surveys. This data was taken from Compdata's Compensation Data Survey.

2008 Turnover Rates by Industry

2008 Voluntary Turnover

All Industries 12.5% - Utilities 7.8% - Manufacturing 10.4% - Not-For-Profit - 12.6% Real Estate/Construction 13.8% - Services 14.0% - Financial Services 14.0% Distribution/Warehouse 14.9% - Healthcare 15.7% - Other 15.9% - Technology 17.2% - Hospitality 27.2%

2008 Total Turnover

All Industries 18.7% - Utilities 11.1% - Not-For-Profit 16.4% - Manufacturing 16.5% - Financial Services 19.0% - Services 19.8% - Healthcare 20.8% - Technology 21.7% - Real Estate/Construction 21.9% - Other 24.0% Distribution/Warehouse 24.4% - Hospitality 36.9%

Note the difference in numbers by industry between the first and second tables. For all industries, voluntary turnover was 12.5% in '08, with total turnover at 18.7% meaning that involuntary terminations were at 6.2% last year. It will be interesting to receive Compdata's 2009's turnover statistics next year and compare them to these tables to further quantify the impact of all of this year's job losses.

As you can tell, there's quite a difference between the turnover rates reported by industry, particularly those found in the total turnover table. Can you imagine having to replace almost 40% of your employees every year, as those of you in the hospitality industry did (on average)? That takes a lot of time, energy & HR staff to keep up with that workload! Find your industry to learn how your company compared to these average 2008 turnover rates. You can also calculate your actual turnover for the first quarter of 2009 to see how you're tracking against last year's actual numbers or using the numbers provided in this article as a benchmark comparison.

Remember that by identifying and tracking patterns based upon factual information, you can better forecast and manage HR for the next 3 to 6 months. And be better positioned to proactively manage HR in a positive way!

Copyright 2009 Regan HR, Inc.

About the Author

Becky is passionate about designing Human Resources programs and compensation plans that build organizations. Her approach? Support individual HR professionals with consulting and continuing education, delivered online at => http://www.ReganHR.com , via information products through the teleseminar format, plus coaching and mentorship programs. She can be reached at [email protected]

Rebecca Regan