HR Tips: Google’s 4 Ways of Retaining Staff

HR Tips: Google’s 4 Ways of Retaining Staff

Having previously covered how the multinational technology company, Google, carry out their recruitment processes, I thought it was time to delve into their secrets to their staff retention success.

While the brand itself certainly helps attract and keep some employees, this isn’t the sole reason behind their well-documented happy workplace culture.

With this in mind, what factors keep Google’s staff happy and stopping them from walking out the door? And can their culture help your business succeed?

Let’s take a closer look.

They start with the recruitment process

One of the most glaringly obvious resolutions to lowering staff turnover rates is to get things right from the start.

For instance, if you hire an average employee, there’s a high probability that they either won’t cut the mustard or even worse, they’ll just turn up for the money.

It’s vital that you’re thorough in your recruitment drive and very particular about what kind of professional you want to find.

Despite receiving around 6,849 applications per day, Google still takes the time to analyse and follow the right recruitment processes.

This includes:

  • Conducting structured interviews.
  • Setting tasks for candidates to get an insight into their skills.
  • Testing their general cognitive ability to ensure they’re hiring a professional with basic smarts.
  • Testing for conscientiousness to establish who has the potential to be a great leader.
  • Scoring every part of the interview process to get a data-driven analysis of a candidate.
  • Inviting different people from the company into the interview to see what they think.
  • Treating the interview like a sales pitch to see how well a candidate can sell themselves.

Follow these 7 Recruitment Ideas That We Can Nick From Google and you’ll start to form a team of the right professionals.

Get the perks right

Introducing fantastic work benefits and a top wellness programme is imperative if you’re going to keep people smiling and motivated within your business.

In fact, 66% of employees stated that they’d probably stay longer with a business that offers top benefits, while 83% of recruitment professionals believe that having a good package in place makes their job a lot easier.

At Google, they offer all of their permanent staff:

  • Free breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Free health and dental
  • Free haircuts
  • Free dry cleaning
  • Subsidised massages
  • Gym and swimming pool facilities
  • Hybrid car subsidies
  • Nap pods
  • Video games, foosball and ping pong onsite
  • Onsite physicians
  • Death benefits

Naturally, the ‘one size fits all’ approach might not necessarily work for your business. So it pays to do your homework and research what work benefits your employees are going to like the most.

To help you with that, check out our previous blog: ‘What Work Perks do Employees Really Want?

Create a culture based on data

Google’s winning work culture and inclusive environment is based on their research. For example, to encourage team bonding and staff interaction at lunch, they’ve made sure that all of their tables are long so people have to mingle more.

They also discovered that a lot of their staff leaving were new mothers. In response, they now provide 5 months of paid time off (instead of 12 weeks), with all benefits included. Since introducing this, they’ve experienced a 50% reduction in attrition for new mothers.

Another big difference based on their research is the fact that Google ditched the stuffy conference rooms for more relaxed diner booths.

The man in charge of creating their work environment, David Radcliffe, said: “Casual collisions are what we try and create in the work environment. You can’t schedule idea generation and so when we think our facilities around the world, we’re really looking for little opportunities for engineers or for creative people to come together.”

Manage the right way

Google also pride themselves on their top managerial qualities too – after all, if an employee has to work for a horrible person, they probably won’t stick at it for long!

Instead, every senior member of staff at Google has to follow their ‘Eight Good Behaviours’ list:

  1. Be a good coach
  2. Empower your team and don’t micromanage
  3. Express interest in team members’ success and personal well-being
  4. Don’t be a sissy: Be productive and results-orientated
  5. Be a good communicator and listen to your team
  6. Help your employees with career development
  7. Have a clear vision and strategy for the team
  8. Have key technical skills so you can help advise the team

They must also avoid falling victim of the ‘Three Pitfalls of Managers’:

  1. Have trouble making a transition to the team
  2. Lack a consistent approach to performance management and career development
  3. Spend too little time managing and communicating

In your business, try listing a company ethos and instruct managerial staff to follow that line of thinking.


Hopefully, Google’s way of working has given you some inspiration on how to manage and look after your staff. Remember, the key is to put your employees’ interests first and encourage a fun, vibrant work culture.

If you do this, there’s a great chance that your business will become more productive, while better equipping itself to hire the right professionals in the first place and keep them for a longer period of time.

Enjoyed reading this? Then check out our other blogs based on improving business staff retention.  

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