What is the productivity cost of the lag time or make-up period when one employee leaves and another moves into his or her position? That would require math which I’m not so good at so I’ll refer you to William G. Bliss of isquare.com. 

“Calculating and adding all these costs, given our original example of the $50,000 person can easily reach $75,000 to replace them. As you can see, the costs and impact associated with an employee who leaves the company can be

Read the 1,800-word breakdown in its fascinating and intricate entirety.

But turnover is inevitable. So what one should look to do is to minimize these costs. And with a little foresight this is possible.

Employees at the end of their line have no real incentive to make their job easier for their replacement. They’re not going to get fired. So why not create incentives for employees that are not going to leave (at least that you know of) to put together a current job description so you’re not left having to train somebody for something that you, let’s face it, probably forgot a long time ago (if you ever knew at all).

Tip: Pick a slow time during your business cycle to ask for this.

Tip: Encourage bullet pointing. We hate it but it works (the Ten Commandments were bullet pointed; are YOU going to argue with God?)

Tip: Ask that a most currently used contacts list be added to the description’s index.

Tip: Encourage them to use screenshots. Pictures are the easiest way to teach somebody. Have them print out screenshots of the steps in commonly-used programs with a red pen. This way the new hire can use it as a visual cheat sheet.

Tip: Finally, incentive it. You get what you pay for; by offering an selfish motivators people will be more willing to take the job seriously. And don’t punk out on the cheap and get everyone a pizza party; this is an investment that hopefully will SAVE you money down the road. Think iTunes gift cards or maybe a restaurant voucher.

Anyone else have suggestions?