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3 HR Management Solutions for SMEs

By January 30, 2013January 18th, 2024Uncategorized

Earlier this month, Wallace Immen, staff writer for The Globe & Mail highlighted three HR areas where small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) may face challenges in 2013.

In the article, Management challenges you can’t afford to ignore in 2013, Immen identified EngagementTurnover, and Leadership as the most concerning HR issues, as reported by a Forbes Insights survey for Deloitte & Touche LLP. With these three topics in mind, we would like to take this opportunity to offer our tips for SMEs that are looking to tackle these challenges while growing their business in the year ahead.


Countless reports and studies (including our own) have confirmed that employees want to know that their work is meaningful and recognized as such. While compensation and benefits are important factors in retention initiatives, few employees are willing to stick around solely for the health coverage if they don’t believe their role is reflective of their skills and abilities.

The key to addressing engagement is to first focus on fit. Hiring employees that have the right skills and the right attitude for the position will ultimately have higher levels of engagement. After the hiring process, engagement can be further supported with performance management and recognition programs.


Immen identified that both millennials and employees with less than two years on the job are more likely to consider leaving for another employer. To reduce the levels of employee turnover, our advice to employers is to start with immediate supervisors.

Our internship model includes coaching as one of the four pillars of successful internship experiences because we believe in the power of supportive intern onboarding. Immediate supervisors and/or informal mentors can drive performance management and show appreciation, resulting in greater engagement and lower levels of turnover.

Internships and mentoring programs also allow employers and new employees alike to determine cultural “fit” in a low-risk context. The better the fit is initially, the lower turnover will be in the long run. Ultimately, if employees like their coworkers, feel valued and respected by their managers, and believe that their work is important, they will stick around.


As Immen notes, employees that trust their corporate leaders are less likely to consider leaving their organizations. But we believe leadership goes beyond establishing trust. Leaders – especially those in small and medium-sized businesses – must clearly communicate the mission, goals, and direction of their organization to employees while reflecting these points in their own work.

Ensuring that your onboarding process includes palpable communication and exemplification of your organization’s corporate culture will not only show leadership, but will help employees understand how their role and attitude is reflected in the organization’s structure.

Walk the talk and your team will follow in your footsteps.