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TSHR - Trak and Scarlett Recruitment Fashion and Retail staff turnover Report 2013

by Rachel Walker-Cole

Interviewing and selection methods have similar Human resource practices when looking at selecting and recruiting the right candidates across Australia.

The results of the 2013 Trak and Scarlett Recruitment, “Fashion and Retail Staff Turnover Report” show some interesting trends in the Australian employment market. Staff turnover was measured by calculating the number of terminations for the full year, divided by the end of year headcount.

Data collected for this survey was for the period ending June 30, 2013. Respondents included a mix of local and international retailers based in Australia and New Zealand across large chain, big box, food, specialty, apparel and accessories, services and beauty retailers.

From the data collated, the average retail store employee turnover was 42%. The highest turnover was 90% and the lowest was 8%. Hiring new employees can cost the business anywhere between $5000- $10000 per person, so you want to make the right hiring decisions and retain the high performers. The average days to recruit retail store roles were 21 days, with the highest at 35 days and the lowest at 5 days. Respondents were asked if Store Manager salaries; increased, stayed the same or decreased. 69% of respondents stated there was an increase on average of 3-4% mainly due to the retail award rate increasing.

59% of survey respondents measure head office staff turnover. Many businesses find head office staff turnover more difficult to measure; however it is measured the same as retail positions. The average head office employee turnover was reported at 24%, with the highest at 45% and the lowest at 9%. On average it takes 27 days to fill head office vacancies, which is an improvement from our survey in 2011 at 8.1 weeks. The highest average days to fill was at 47 days and the lowest was 14 days.

Respondents were asked if they found hiring harder than previous years, the same or easier. 64% have found the level of hiring ease the same. 27% said they found it harder with 9% finding it easier.

The top 3 toughest positions to recruit for were as follows:

  1. Store Managers
  2. Merchandise Planners/ Buying
  3. Marketing/ e-Commerce/ Digital

The top 3 toughest locations to recruit for were as follows:

  1. Western Australia
  2. CBD locations
  3. Regional Queensland

Respondents were asked if their head count increased, stayed the same or decreased. 62% of respondents stated a decrease in head count, while 38% saw an increase namely due to new store openings.

Retention should be a key goal for businesses to increase organisational effectiveness by reducing staff turnover. Reducing staff turnover and retaining capable and experienced employees will make a notable difference to an organisation’s profitability, customer relationships and internal efficiencies.

Trak HR Consulting is able to assist your business in developing people practices with a focus on maximising organisational profitability and delivering quantifiable ROI. Trak HR Consulting offers a suite of specialist boutique HR services to retail organisations in two broad categories:


HR Strategy:

  • Performance Management
  • Talent Management
  • Organisational Design
  • Learning and Development
  • Succession and Career Planning
  • Attraction and Retention
  • Remuneration and Benefits
  • Change Management and Innovation
  • Organisational Values
  • Communications Strategy
  • Corporate Social Responsibility

HR Function Support:

  • In house HR projects and support
  • HR Interim Contracting and Outsourcing
  • HR effectiveness audit and key people metrics review
  • HR Mentoring
  • Compliance around Modern Award and general Fair  Work Act provisions
  • Career Outplacement
  • Talent Assessment and Coaching
  • Facilitation
  • Safety and Wellbeing