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News Releases

Providing Flexible Hours Critical for Employee Retention in Minnesota, Says BMO Harris Bank Study

MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL, MN--(Marketwired - Jun 3, 2014) -

  • Two thirds (64 percent) of business owners/executives surveyed see flexible hours as the most effective employee retention strategy
  • When hiring junior employees, work experience is the most sought-after attribute with skill set and personality not far behind
  • 66 percent of business owners/executives feel that college graduates are either more prepared or equally prepared to enter the workforce today, compared to 20 years ago

BMO Harris Bank released a study today that found that, other than a salary increase, business owners and executives see flexible hours as the most important strategy for retaining talented employees. Providing increased health and dental benefits and educational opportunities were a distant second and third, respectively.

Strategies seen to be most effective for retaining talented employees are:

  • Flexible hours (64 percent)
  • Increased health and dental benefits (39 percent)
  • Tuition assistance (36 percent)

"Finding the right mix of benefits to attract and retain top talent in the market is critical for the growth of any business," said Todd Senger, Regional President, BMO Harris Bank. "From the survey, it's easy to see that business owners are spending resources on the talent that will make them successful. That is a good sign not only for our economy and businesses, but also for employees."

Today's College Graduates

The study found that business owners/executives are equally divided on whether college graduates are more prepared, equally prepared or less prepared than 20 years ago, with a response rate of 33 percent for each. Furthermore, when considering ideal attributes, business owners/executives that are hiring junior employees clearly have a preference for work experience:

  • Work experience (45 percent)
  • Skill Set (34 percent)
  • Personality (33 percent)

"There is no substitute for work experience when an employee needs to hit the ground running, but it's good to see that business owners recognize other attributes are important when looking at recent grads who likely don't have a lot of work experience," added Mr. Senger.

The survey was conducted by Pollara with an online sample of 601 American business owners in November, 2013. A probability sample of this size would be accurate to +/- 4%, 19 times out of 20.

About BMO Harris Bank
BMO Harris Bank provides a broad range of personal banking products and solutions through more than 600 branches and approximately 1,300 ATMs in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, Nevada, Arizona and Florida. BMO Harris Bank's commercial banking team provides a combination of sector expertise, local knowled ge and mid-market focus throughout the U.S. For more information about BMO Harris Bank, go to the company fact sheet. Banking products and services are provided by BMO Harris Bank N.A. and are subject to bank or credit approval. BMO Harris Bank® is a trade name used by BMO Harris Bank N.A. Member FDIC. BMO Harris Bank is part of BMO Financial Group, a North American financial organization with approximately 1,600 branches, and CDN $582 billion in assets (as of April 30, 2014).

For further information:

Media Contact:
Beth Copeland
(317) 269-1395