You've probably heard that it takes more than a competitive salary to attract great employees. While this may be true, it is one of the key components to retaining those employees.

However, several other factors play a major role in an employee's deicision to stay on board or jump ship—including vacation and holidays and tuition reimbursement.

Here is a list of key strategies for keeping your best employees.

• Select the right people in the first place through behavior-based testing and competency screening. The right person, in the right seat, on the right bus is the starting point.

• Offer an attractive, competitive, benefits package with components such as life insurance, disability insurance and flexible hours.

• Provide opportunities for people to share their knowledge via training sessions, presentations, mentoring others and team assignments.

• Demonstrate respect for employees at all times. Listen to them deeply; use their ideas; never ridicule or shame them.

• Offer performance feedback and praise good efforts and results.

• People want to enjoy their work. Make work fun. Engage and employ the special talents of each individual.

• Enable employees to balance work and life. Allow flexible starting times, core business hours and flexible ending times. (Yes, his son's soccer game is important.)

• Involve employees in decisions that affect their jobs and the overall direction of the company whenever possible.

• Recognize excellent performance, and especially, link pay to performance.

• Base the upside of bonus potential on the success of both the employee and the company and make it limitless within company parameters. (As an example, pay ten percent of corporate profits to employees.)

• Recognize and celebrate success. Mark their passage as important goals are achieved.

• Staff adequately so overtime is minimized for those who don't want it and people don't wear themselves out.

• Nurture and celebrate organization traditions. Have a costume party every Halloween. Run a food collection drive every November. Pick a monthly charity to help. Have an annual company dinner at a fancy hotel.

• Provide opportunities within the company for cross-training and career progression. People like to know that they have room for career movement.

• Provide the opportunity for career and personal growth through training and education, challengine assignments and more.

• Communicate goals, roles and responsibilities so people know what is expected and feel like part of the in-crowd.

• According to research by the Gallup organization, encourage employees to have good, even best, friends at work.