Retention Solutions Network

What’s your Retention Strategy?

According to a 2017 report by Employer Benefit News, a lost employee costs a company on average 33% of the employee’s base pay. Yet few employers have a retention strategy. The Retention Solutions Network can help!

Retention solutions for a more supported, productive and engaged workforce

The Retention Solutions Network @ West Michigan Works! offers customized, timely, in-person support and training to keep your employees on the job and your business thriving.

Click on the tabs below or contact us at to learn more.

Benefits for Employers

– Minimized work disruptions and decreased absenteeism

– Increased employee retention and engagement

– Insightful data on impact, ROI and the challenges your workers face

– Training for frontline workers, supervisors and managers, created in partnership with your HR team

– A network of member employers to share best practices

Benefits for Employees

An on-site success coach provides face-to-face, confidential assistance including:

– Facilitated, fast-tracked connections to community resources addressing life issues affecting work performance

– Personalized financial planning and coaching

– Help identifying career advancement and training opportunities

We have the infrastructure and resources to serve employers efficiently and effectively

Success coach: your retention expert

The Retention Solutions Network model addresses the root causes of low employee retention; the barriers that come with working and living in poverty and the need for technical and workplace skills so that employees can not only stay employed, but thrive. Our success coaches are fully trained MiBridges navigators, career coaches and mandated reporters. They know their community and its resources. They can connect your employees with the support and training they need, when they need it.

More resources = an affordable retention solution

West Michigan Works! has greater access to state and federal funding than many of its competitors. This means reduced rates and incentives for employers. With 30+ years of successful grant management, we are poised and qualified to apply for and administer funds to help you support and retain your workforce.

Contact Mark Dumouchelle at 616-355-3327 or for rates.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will employees meet with the Success Coach during their shift?

No, the Success Coach will never ask an employee to meet during a time when the employee is scheduled to be working. The Success Coach can meet with employees, before or after a shift, on-site at their workplace or at a Michigan Works! Service Center. The Success Coach is flexible and can accommodate all shifts.

What kind of reporting will I receive to track employee engagement?

For the first 6 months of engagement with the Retention Solutions Network, you will receive monthly employee utilization reports. This report will detail the types of barriers that your employees are facing, the amount of time employees are spending with the Success Coach and an example or a story will be shared. Dashboards are shared at monthly member meetings.

How does the Retention Solutions Network differ from an EAP?

EAPs are designed and staffed to handle acute issues on a short term basis, often by referring the employee to outside resources. Likely, a given EAP is contracted by many, many employers to work with their employees, often at the job jeopardy stage, and may not be available to follow-up on the referrals provided. The Retention Solutions Network, on the other hand, works with a few specific employers and customizes services to meet the needs of their employees. Our services are designed to be high-touch and long term – we address the issue at hand and then work with the employee to align resources and build assets so that the issue does not repeat.

What are the most important employer’s responsibilities in relation to the Retention Solutions Network?

Once the employer member has signed an memorandum of understanding, the responsibilities for the employer are to participate in monthly member meetings, provide monthly reporting and adhere to the Employer Best Practices for maximum outreach and benefit.

What kind of information does an Employer need to share with the Retention Solutions Network?

It is important for the Success Coach to understand employer benefits, such as health insurance, vision and dental policies and other benefits offered to employees. An understanding of shift times, leadership structure, orientation process and hiring requirements is also help to best serve employees.

How long will an employee receive services from the Success Coach?

There is no time limit for services, the Success Coach will serve an employee for as long as it takes to get them back on track, as long as the employee remains employed by any member company.

Employee Success Stories

The following stories are examples of how the Retention Solutions Network can help employees deal with issues that might otherwise affect attendance and productivity.

No more medical debt and looking for a home to purchase

An employee met with the Retention Solutions Network (RSN) success coach because she couldn’t keep up with her bills, causing stress and negatively impacting her credit score. The employee’s main concerns were outstanding medical bills, lack of funds to pay for auto insurance and improving her credit score to qualify for a mortgage.

The success coach worked with the employee on a budget plan to pay down medical debt, while Community Ventures funding paid the employee’s auto insurance for six months. The success coach also connected the employee to a mortgage representative and real estate agent.

The employee has now fully paid off her medical debt, has an insured vehicle to get to work, has qualified for a mortgage and is currently looking for a home to purchase.

Valid insurance to maintain transportation to work

An employee was referred to the RSN by a co-worker. The employee was unable to pay his auto insurance premium due to outstanding medical debt. The employee was struggling to pay down the medical debt because of necessary living expenses for his family.

The RSN success coach worked out a budget with the employee to pay down the medical debt and connected him to PNC Bank to attend a financial budgeting class. The success coach utilized Community Ventures funding to pay for six months of the employee’s auto insurance.

The employee is happy about attending the financial budgeting class and has valid insurance to maintain his transportation to work.

Coping techniques to build positive relationships with co-workers

An employee was referred to the RSN success coach by his Human Resource department. The employee received written warning along with a Personal Improvement Plan (PIP) due to alleged irrational behaviors that the employee was displaying towards co-workers.

The success coach met with employee several times to develop a behavioral plan. The behavioral plan included specific coping techniques that the success coach worked on with the employee through role playing. The employee met with the success Coach on a weekly basis and discussed the coping techniques that he implemented during that week.

After weeks of working with the employee, it was reported that he is off probation, is working towards positive co-worker relationships and seems to be excelling at work. The employee continues to meet with his coach to role play, discuss problem-solving techniques and overall coping mechanisms. The success coach is available to the employee via phone, email or text in case of emergencies.

Working to remove transportation barrier

An employee met with the RSN success coach because he was experiencing a transportation barrier. The employee had his driver’s license revoked eight years ago due to two DUI’s. Although he is eligible for Driver’s License Reinstatement, he has not made efforts towards the requirements of the application process mandated by the State of Michigan. The employee has been pulled over multiple times and has been ticketed for driving without a license.

The success coach is working with Secretary of State and the court to assist the employee with reinstating his license. In the meantime, the success coach worked with the employee to develop a temporary action plan whereby his wife would drive him to and from work so he may avoid further infractions and maintain his transportation to work.

“It makes me feel valued that my employer cares enough about staff to bring a success coach in.”

An employee was referred to the RSN by the Human Resource department. The employee was experiencing recurring debt for medical expenses for his spouse and child.

The success coach recommended an application for DHHS Services to cover medical expenses for his child and assisted the employee with the application and verification process; his child is now qualified for medical services from the state. The success coach also worked with the employee on a budget plan to pay off outstanding medical bills. Community Ventures funding was used to pay the employee’s overdue auto insurance, allowing the employee to completely pay off the medical debt.

The employee states, “It makes me feel valued that my employer cares enough about staff to bring a success coach in.”

A plan to keep employee safe and in his home

An employee met with the RSN Success Coach because he was having issues in the home with a family member.  After discussing the situation, the Coach and the employee developed a plan to keep him safe while he was in the process of temporarily moving.

The Success Coach made referrals to agencies that specialized in housing and legal services and the employee was able to reach an amicable agreement to retain possession of the home and move back to the residence.  The employee and Coach also developed a budgeting plan so the client would be able to maintain his personal finances.

Never miss a mortgage payment again

An employee met with the RSN Success Coach seeking assistance with outstanding mortgage payments. The employee was three months behind on his mortgage due to outstanding medical debt and living expenses. The Success Coach referred the employee to the Step Forward Michigan Program, which pays off arrearage. The Success Coach assisted the employee with his application to Step Forward Michigan and referred him to PNC for financial budgeting/counseling to set a budget to ensure he does not fall behind on his mortgage in the future.

Referred by co-workers to help ease financial strain

An employee was referred to the RSN by two of his co-workers. The employee and his spouse have custody of their toddler grandchild, which was straining already tight finances.

The Success Coach utilized Community Ventures funding to eliminate identified transportation barriers (insuring, registering and repairing his vehicle). Currently the vehicle is safe to drive to and from work and to transport his grandchild to appointments. Additionally, the employee did not complete a tax return for 2017/2018. To eliminate this barrier the Success Coach made a referral for tax preparation to North Kent Connect. Another referral was made to DHHS via State Emergency Relief (SER) using Navigator Partner (MI Bridges) to replace a broken furnace in the employee’s home. The employee’s taxes are now complete and a furnace replacement request is in process.

Network Members

Join the network of Retention Solutions members

As the Retention Solutions Network grows, employer members will have opportunities to connect, collaborate and share best practices. Common member needs will set the direction of the network.

The following employers are current members of the Retention Solutions Network:

DeWys Manufacturing

“The Retention Solutions Network is an extension of the culture and values of DeWys. We want to help our team members thrive personally, professionally and financially. The services and our success coach, Natalie, have been a great addition to our team.”
– Jon DeWys, CEO, DeWys Mfg.

“The RSN services have been a huge addition to the benefits we offer. It’s free of charge to our team members, but can be life changing.  We have had such a great response from employees; everything we have done to get this started was worth the investment.”
– Laura Preusser, Workforce Development Manager, DeWys Mfg.


AAC Credit Union offers a bridge loan and savings plan option that can help eligible employees with unexpected emergencies. Employees can borrow up to $1,000 at 12.90%APR interest rate.

  • Built in Save for Success program
  • Easy repayment via payroll deduction (direct deposit)
  • Direct deposit can continue after payoff for continued savings
  • Modest application & membership fees

Retention Solutions Network