How Small And Medium-Sized Businesses Can Better Retain Their Employees

Magnet and figures of people. Customer acquisition and retention.

From overt quitting to quiet quitting, many employees these days are saying “enough” to suboptimal working conditions and seeking greener pastures.

When you dive into the statistics, their frustration is understandable. According to a 2022 Deloitte worldwide survey on “14,808 Gen Zs and 8,412 millennials across 46 countries,” 46% of Gen Z respondents and 47% of Millennial respondents stated that they “live paycheck to paycheck and worry they won’t be able to cover their expenses.”
The costs of poor employee retention rates add up fast, both in terms of money and time. So, how can businesses—in particular, SMEs—improve their employee retention rates? In my view, it comes down to focusing on four main factors.

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Tips for a Successful Job Fair

Get ready for the September 29th Job Fair at Ripken Stadium!

Register now!

TIP #1:  Dress professionally!  Consider this your first opportunity to make a good impression.

TIP #2:  Walk up to the employers table or booth.  Make eye contact with the recruiter, smile and say hello.  Offer your handshake and introduce yourself.

TIP #3:  Deliver your 15-second “sales pitch”.

  • Mention your occupation or the job you want
  • Give your experience, skills, and accomplishments
  • Explain what make you different; in a positive way

TIP #4:   Research the company in advance.  Susquehanna Workforce Centers have list of the businesses and jobs that they have open. Ask about career opportunities for your occupation at that company.

TIP #5:  Answer the recruiter’s questions and ask a few follow-ups of your own. 

  • Know some appropriate questions to ask.

TIP #6:  Tell the recruiter that you would like to apply for a position, if not done in advance.

TIP #7:  Offer the recruiter a copy of your resume and ask if they when they will be hiring.  Susquehanna Workforce Center Employment Specialists can assist with resume review.

TIP #8:   Ask how you can schedule a job interview.

TIP #9:  Thank the recruiter, smile and offer your handshake.

TIP #10:  Follow-up. Could be an email, personal note, call.


– Bruce England to Retire After Leading SWN for 20 Years –

(Havre de Grace, MD) – August 10, 2022 – Susquehanna Workforce Network (SWN) announced today that Kimberly Justus has been appointed as its new Executive Director. Justus has served 10 years in various roles at SWN and was selected from a large field of candidates after a national search. She will succeed Bruce England, who is retiring after 20 years as Executive Director.

Justus rose from Employment Specialist in 2012 to Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Operations Manager in February 2020 at the beginning of the pandemic. She led SWN’s switch to telework status and made Harford and Cecil counties one of the first regions in the state to serve jobseekers and businesses with fully remote employment services. During the time that Justus has been with SWN, the organization has provided an average of over 7000 services to job seekers and over 5000 transactions with area businesses each year.

“Kimberly has the vision and experience SWN needs to fulfill its mission and grow,” said Mary Ann Bogarty, President of the SWN Board of Directors. “I expect the organization to flourish under her leadership.” The Susquehanna Workforce Network serves individuals with career planning and training, and helps businesses grow by providing workforce attraction, retention, and development services.

“As SWN’s new Executive Director,” Justus said, “I’ll work to create a smoother process for presenting newly trained job seekers to fill open positions with the businesses in our region. I also want to grow our Youth/Young Adult program to reach more young people in need of help.”

Justus earned her BA in Mathematics with a minor in Economics cum laude from Temple University. She holds certifications as a Certified Workforce Development Professional from the National Association of Workforce Development Professionals and as a Global Career Development Facilitator from the Center for Credentialing and Education.

About Susquehanna Workforce Network

The Susquehanna Workforce Network is a private, nonprofit corporation that oversees, coordinates, and plans workforce development programs and services for businesses and individuals in Harford and Cecil counties in Maryland. SWN Business Services operations help businesses attract, develop, and retain employees. The Susquehanna Workforce Centers assist residents in achieving their career and employment goals. SWN’s Youth Services connect the emerging workforce to entry-level employment opportunities and funds services to specialized populations.

SWN began its search for a new Executive Director in late April when Executive Director Bruce England announced his intention to retire. Bogarty led the Search Committee, which was comprised of SWN’s Executive Committee and Committee Chairs. The committee cast a wide net at the national, regional, and local levels and considered 53 candidates before selecting Kimberly Justus as the best qualified to lead SWN as its new Executive Director. Justus will begin her new role on August 15.

10 Unconventional (But Very Effective) Tips For Job Seekers

In the market for a new job? You’ve probably been urged to “pursue your passions,” “leverage your network,” “tailor and tidy up your resume,” “do your homework,” and “dress for success”—among other things.

“These are foundational aspects to job seeking that are timeless,” says Teri Hockett, the chief executive of What’s For Work?, a career site for women.

David Parnell, a legal consultant, communication coach and author, agrees: “Much of this has been around long enough to become conventional for a reason: it works,” he says. “If you take a closer look, things like networking, research, and applying to multiple employers are fundamental ‘block and tackle’ types of activities that apply to 80% of the bell curve. They hinge upon casting a broad net; they leverage the law of averages; they adhere to the fundamentals of psychology. It’s no wonder they still work.”

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