The Facts About Employee Turnover

Close up of a coffee mug that says "I love my Job" and a flipchart with a growing chart. Concept for Business performance and workplace well being.

Close up of a coffee mug that says "I love my Job" and a flipchart with a growing chart. Concept for Business performance and workplace well being.Jim RudmanBy Jim Rudman, CEO, Ashton Tweed

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Every year, hiring, firing, and turnover data is collected across world industries. And with each year, the numbers change. However, there are some fundamental facts about employee turnover that remain constant in the life sciences industry, including the pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device, diagnostic sectors. Here’s what you need to know to minimize the impact of employee turnover:


Fast-Paced Industry:

The life sciences industry is constantly changing and extremely competitive. The industry tends to evolve at a quicker pace than other industries due to new regulations, demands, and technologies. This may cause employees to feel like they are in a continuous state of flux, pushing them to look for a more stable company. Or this may make employees more competitive and willing to leave in order to build their résumé or CV. Employees provided with some form of routine or consistency in the workplace feel more stable and empowered to succeed.



Replacing an employee can cost as much as 150% percent of the employee’s annual salary. Therefore, the higher the salary or position, the higher the turnover cost. Since executive and C-level employees are especially hard to replace, these roles typically take longer to fill and increase the cost further. These are prime positions for which companies often look to the search industry. Their assistance can lower your cost and your speed of hire.


Company Culture:

Positivity, communication, and happiness are key aspects employees look for in a company, especially in a high-stress industry like the life sciences. Intense demands and poor communication from employers is a major stressor and a top reason for people to leave. If your employees enjoy the company culture, they are less likely to look elsewhere, causing high employee retention.



Only 25% of employees consider themselves truly motivated at work. Lack of employee motivation or engagement may cause employees to look for more fulfilling positions and makes it easier for them to leave their current company. Motivating employees properly makes them more personally invested in the company and makes them feel more necessary.


Better Incentives:

When working with a company for over a year, an employee’s annual raise is typically calculated as a small percentage of his or her salary. However, by moving to a new company, employees can negotiate a higher salary altogether. Therefore, offering better individual bonuses and raises may persuade people to stay rather than to look elsewhere.


Employee turnover disrupts the flow of business and slows down progress. In the life sciences, employee retention is one of the keys to success. For more hiring trends and advice, click here to subscribe to Ashton Tweed’s exclusive email list.

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