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How Staff Turnover Impacts Field Marketing

In a contract-driven job market such as field marketing or merchandising, it is not uncommon for a lot of employees to have relatively nomadic careers. Unfortunately, staff turnover has a negative effect on revenue as well as team morale and productivity. Understanding why this is the case and how it affects the industry and the agencies which constitute it could potentially revolutionize how the business of field marketing is conducted.

Generally, turnover can either be voluntary (an employee choosing to leave an organization of their own accord) or involuntary (an employer terminating an employee’s contract or choosing not to renew it). While turnover is an inevitability of business, sometimes even a necessary one, it should be kept to the absolute minimum, particularly in the field marketing business.

A low staff turnover rate and a happy staff contingent are hallmarks of a successful business. While it is common to hire field marketing staff exclusively for the duration of a campaign, field marketing agencies should endeavour to retain their staff. In the words of Richard Branson, “Take care of your employees and they’ll take care of your business”. There are real benefits to actively reducing staff turnover.

How To Reduce Staff Turnover

Hire the right people

It is important to get the right team together right off the bat. It may be tempting to check for the bare minimum requirements but in order to build an effective team that represents clients’ brands well, the hiring process needs to establish whether or not a prospective team member is a good culture fit for the company. If they fit in, they will be happy and that will lead to better productivity and a lower inclination to leave.

Offer competitive remuneration

Employees are humans and need to earn enough to cover their basic expenses, like housing, utilities, groceries, and transport. In major metropolitan areas such as Johannesburg, transport is particularly expensive for most employees that have to commute to work, often matching or even exceeding their rentals. If your team barely makes enough to just put a roof over their heads and get to work, they will be physically incapable of delivering their best performance.

If incentives are promised, it is essential that the promise be fulfilled. That extra bit of income goes a long way and has a massive emotional impact. Failing to deliver incentives when employees have earned them is a sure-fire way to kill their dedication and encourage them to leave.

Give words of encouragement and praise

This is a simple yet powerful technique to build a team that is dedicated to the agency and motivated to continuously outperform themselves. Employees need encouragement and praise for their work. When they beat sales targets, congratulate them. If they put in extra effort to get a campaign off the ground, tell them they have done a good job.


Keeping a team of happy and dedicated employees is a powerful contributor to the success of a field marketing agency. With a team that believes they are a part of the agency and not just hired guns for a brief stint, an agency can truly deliver superior campaigns and represent its clients in the best possible way.

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