What Are the Benefits of Seniority in the Workplace?

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In the workplace, some employees value the years of service given to the organization. In some cases, they will expect certain benefits of seniority as they continue to contribute from year to year. An employer should balance the needs of these workers with the competing needs of newer workers.

Building Loyalty

Some organizations use seniority in pay schemes. This would be true especially in organizations in which employees have collective bargaining rights, including firefighters, teachers and factory workers. If employees can assume they'll earn a higher rate of pay by staying loyal to their employer, they will continue their service. They can count on this economic security during their careers.

Building Human Capital

Another aspect of seniority is the benefit of building human capital assets. Organizations become more valuable when they keep senior workers, as long as these people keep performing. A worker trained and developed that stays in employment keeps knowledge, an asset, in the organization. When an employee leaves, that particular knowledge is either lost or must be redeveloped in a new employee.

Benefiting Customers

Customers also benefit from seniority in the workplace. Customers don't have to develop relationships with newer employees if they have existing contacts with senior employees. This model builds customer loyalty. The exception is that senior workers must be able to establish relationships with newer customers, thereby turning them into loyal customers.

Covered Absences

Another type of job security is knowing that your job seniority will still be intact when you miss duty due to legally-protected circumstances. Examples would include military workers called away to temporary duty, workers injured on the job and workers claiming family medical leave. When you return from covered situations, expect to receive the same level of benefits as others who joined the organization when you did.

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