Attract and Retain Talent

A list of shovel-ready options inspired by the Social Determinants of Work Initiative

The Social Determinants of Work framework describes an interconnected web of challenges – such as childcare, transportation, and job flexibility – that workers must navigate daily in order to arrive and thrive at their workplaces. These factors also affect your ability as an employer to attract and retain the full spectrum of talent your workforce needs.

Why use this toolkit?

Needing talent is expensive. It is expensive to leave positions vacant, pricey to recruit replacements, and costly to train new FTEs frequently. Taking into account the “soft” costs of the hiring process, the full cost to replace an employee is estimated to be 3 to 4 times their annual salary (SHRM, 2023).

Cost to Replace an Employee: 3 – 4x Annual Salary

We hope this toolkit will suggest one or more initiatives that can help address your workforce challenges while simultaneously contributing to our collective goal of helping more community members achieve gainful employment.

How to Use this Toolkit

What's Happening in Your Workplace?

What are the barriers to work most affecting your employees, and how much is it costing your company to have unfilled or frequently vacated positions? Use these tools to understand the cost of the Social Determinants of Work in your context, and to determine where to direct your resources to have the biggest impact on attracting and retaining employees.

Employer Initiatives for Addressing Barriers

By implementing policies that mitigate some of the barriers to work affecting your current and potential employee pool, you can make your company more attractive to workers and better able to retain quality employees.

This chart describes initiatives for each Social Determinant of Work, listed in order of least to greatest investment. Local partners and contacts are listed for many of the initiatives.

Job Flexibility

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Partner with PCs4People and DigitalC to provide universal access to the internet so the option of working remotely is available to all.

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Healthcare

Partner with PCs4People and DigitalC to provide universal access to the internet so the option of working remotely is available to all.

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Childcare

Partner with PCs4People and DigitalC to provide universal access to the internet so the option of working remotely is available to all.

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Transportation

Partner with PCs4People and DigitalC to provide universal access to the internet so the option of working remotely is available to all.

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Sustained Education

Partner with PCs4People and DigitalC to provide universal access to the internet so the option of working remotely is available to all.

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Home and Community Health

Partner with PCs4People and DigitalC to provide universal access to the internet so the option of working remotely is available to all.

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Broadband Access

Partner with PCs4People and DigitalC to provide universal access to the internet so the option of working remotely is available to all.

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Access to Justice

Partner with PCs4People and DigitalC to provide universal access to the internet so the option of working remotely is available to all.

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Case Studies: Initiatives in Action

When done correctly, investing in any number of tools can transform your workforce, serve your employees, and keep you on track to achieve your business goals. Explore the following case studies to see how various organizations in different sectors are taking on this work.

Interested in Joining a Cohort?

The United Way and partners across the region are here to support employers in their efforts to attract and retain talent. If you are interested in additional technical support and guidance as you implement any number of these initiatives, contact Renee Timberlake, Director of Economic Mobility, to join a Social Determinants of Work Cohort.

Acknowledgements

Greater Cleveland’s Social Determinants of Work Employer Toolkit was commissioned by the United Way of Greater Cleveland and builds off of a year’s worth of work in the community. This Toolkit and other components of the Social Determinants of Work Initiative would not have been possible without the invaluable contributions of individuals across the community who face barriers to work and the dedicated employers who are doing what they can to mitigate those barriers. We are grateful and humbled to be in this work with all of you.

We would like to express our deep appreciation for the partners who hosted the employer engagement sessions, including Goodwill Industries of Greater Cleveland and East Central Ohio, MAGNET, and Manufacturing Works. We are also grateful to the employers who shared their stories as a part of the case studies; Dave’s Food Mart; MJ Morgan Group; and National Safety Apparel.

While the foundation of the Social Determinants of Work was established by the United Way of Greater Cleveland, the vision and creation of this Toolkit was led by Rise Together LLC. We recognize the importance of working together to solve these complex problems and we are thankful to have partnered with Rise Together throughout this process.

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