From the July 2000 issue of Entrepreneur

Is employee loyalty making a comeback? That's the trend John A. Challenger, CEO of the outplacement firm Challenger, Gray and Christmas Inc., is seeing.

The company's quarterly Job Market Index Survey of 3,000 discharged managers and executives reports that the median tenure has increased an average of 4.75 percent each year since 1991.

In addition, the survey found the percentage of man-agers and executives who worked for just one previous firm has jumped 28 percent on aver-age since 1992, when only 13 percent fit that profile.

What's changed? More employers acknowledge that workers are concerned about job security and realize the cost of recruiting and training employees is high enough to cut into the bottom line. Consequently, Challenger says they're implementing programs of soft benefits designed to re-establish an atmosphere of trust. He attributes much of this attitude adjustment to the tight labor market.

But has the desire to inspire loyalty trickled down to the rank and file? Not in any big way, but Challenger says that if companies want to gain and maintain a competitive advantage, they're going to have to concentrate on retaining employees from the top to the bottom of the firm.


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