More of a rant than anything else, but please feel free to share any retention ideas that you have been successful with, and ones that didn't work too. My area; the available labor force is so thin, that the fast-food places are typically forced to close a few nights per week because they do not have enough staff to operate the store, so now they are offering upwards of $10/hour to start with zero experience, and a $500.00 signing bonus to be collected at 6 months of employment! So trying to find a decent employee is very tough around here. I lost a great delivery guy this summer by him taking a position at a quick-Lube place, He wants to be a mechanic, but does not quite have the inherent skills to do it IMHO. (been there, done that on diesels and gas engines) He gave us a 3-week notice, he left on good terms, your basic model employee just looking to better himself. When he left, we explained that if things do not work out, he is welcomed back here. (I kinda knew he wouldn't last there due to his unique personality) So, when I heard he had lost his lube-tech job, I reached out and reminded him that he had a place here. He came back, and after 1 week I asked what his intentions were, if he planned to stick around, or just use this as a stop-gap until something more appealing came around. He said "I don't know" So, before I spent a ton of money on advertising that we have increased our delivery area, I needed to know I had enough staff to make it happen. So, I made him an offer. I've seen it called the "Golden Handcuffs incentive" There was a Toyota Corolla he was looking at, but could not afford. I offered to purchase the car for him, he titles, insures, maintains & drives this car as his own, he stays on with us for 6 months, and after that short term, it is his car free & clear. But! if He leaves before 6 months, we retain the car. All was agreed upon by all parties involved. Then in the last week, he has had a bug up his butt about something, he refuses to talk about what is bothering him, he has a piss-poor attitude towards his fellow employees, he's moving slower than a toad at closing time so myself and other staff are now handling his responsibilities on top of our own. He is missing items on delivery tickets, not paying attention to unique driving instructions if they happen to exist, taking double the time on delivery runs than they should take, etc etc etc. He figured that if he takes a long time doing his job, others will jump in and do it for him so he won't need to do it. (he actually told this to another staff member) So last saturday night, I have a customer calling asking where his order is, I check the dispatch screen and tell him I will call right back with an ETA, and an explanation. This is a customer who places a large, big-money order at least once every 2 weeks for the last year. My driver had 2 orders on this particular run, and it was explained that this customer was to be done first due to him being closer, and enroute to the other order on that run. He comes back with this customers order in hand 45 fricken minutes later saying he couldn't find the guys house. I calmly point out that he has already been there multiple times, the POS has mapping to use, he has a smartphone, and a GPS in his car, then asked why none of these tools provided to him were not used. I call the customer, we remake his order, I put a 50% discount on the order and throw in a gift card for $20.00 on top of it all. My head cashier finds the order delivery bag laying on the floor with the food still in it, and a note that says "I Quit" he was averaging over $13/hour with a guaranteed 2 days off in a row each week, well above any other employment options in this area for someone without a medical degree.