I was discussing with a friend about the context of the place where he works. It is a medium sized company (a few hundred employees) with both "legacy" departments (e.g. monolith applications) and "modern" ones (e.g. continuous deployment, micro-services).
He told me that he noticed the following pattern and explanation:
- the legacy departments slowly shrink over time, while the modern ones tend to slowly grow over time
- when an employee from a legacy department wants to leave, it is regarded as a good thing because it helps reach the shrinkage rate. Basically they use the attrition as a "natural" shrinking mechanism.
We have asked ourselves why adopt such a strategy (to allow for "random" shrinkage). Actually our assumption is that this is not actually random since the best employees tend to leave (they go to higher salary positions) and the company loses talent.
Why not trying to transfer talents to other departments before they think of leaving the company and thus avoid losing them?
Question: What is the rationale of using attrition as the main mechanism of slowly shrinking a department (some departments only)?