Is Tech At The Root Of Your Inefficiency?

StrategyDriven Managing Your People Article |Tech in Business|Is Tech At The Root Of Your Inefficiency?In modern business, we have become very used to our reliance on digital technology, to a degree that might have been unfathomable even a couple of decades ago. All kinds of businesses use it nowadays, from making processes easier to complete to managing important business systems.

However, as much of a boon as technology can be to your business, it could also put you at some risk. Without the right management and the right choices of technology at your fingertips, your tech could end up making your business more, not less, inefficient. Here are a few risks to consider.

Tech’s role in the team

It’s undeniable that technology has made it much easier to stay connected and stay in touch across greater distances, whether it’s with the team all coming together to collaborate or to work with remote workers outside the office. However, without effectively structuring how you use tech to communicate with your team, it’s easy to have a disorganized jumble that leads to the increased chance of misunderstandings and errors. Project management software is an efficient and effective way to better communicate through tech, while Cloud storage software is making it much easier to share resources more quickly than emailing or sharing physical hardware.

Be aware of the risk of downtime

The more tech you incorporate in your business, the more of a vulnerability it can become. Indeed, it is likely to be the most versatile and the most valuable tool in your arsenal, but that means that it can also become the crutch your business stands on. Take it away, and chaos can follow. Downtime can lead to major costs, as your team’s ability to do their work can freeze in place. Read more here about the managed services that can help you proactively approach those potential problems. As well as finding fixes for existing vulnerabilities, you should also consider putting together a disaster recovery plan. As such, if something does go majorly wrong, then you have a plan and a path to get you back to full strength as soon as you possibly can.

Tech should reduce your work, not added to it

When you’re bringing tech into the workplace, you’re likely to use it to change your processes and adapt your workflow. However, you need to look more carefully at precisely how it changes that workflow. Read here about key performance indicators you can use to measure the effectiveness of your technology. For instance, are you getting your work done more quickly or slower than before? Are there more mistakes are fewer? Before you roll out new tech implementations across the board, test them in a smaller setting to see how you get on with them. If everything seems legit, then you can go on to introduce it to the rest of the team.

Technology can, indeed, be what prepares your business for the next level of success, by reducing mistakes, increasing productivity, and helping the team collaborate. However, you should always be aware of the risk that comes from managing it poorly, too.

Employee Wellness: Tips To Make Employees More Productive At Work

StrategyDriven Managing Your People ArticleAny company will reap many benefits when they have healthy and engaged employees. An employee wellness program curated and designed correctly will boost morale, increase productivity, and reduce stress. Wellness programs have always been thought of as something nice-to-have rather than a must-have. What employers don’t think about is the benefits in the long term. In the long run, the company will see the results. Wellness programs help employees to stay healthy and lessen absences. The cost of having this employee wellness program will just be minimal compared to the benefits in the long run. Listed below are some tips to make employees more productive at work.

1. What is a Wellness Program?

Before crafting and designing your employee wellness program, you first have to understand what it is. A wellness program is any program with the goal to improve the health and well-being of the company’s workforce. Wellness programs are supposed to help employees overcome general health issues and educate them about what they should do to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Usually, companies hire third-parties to conduct the program and seminar depending on the need and expertise. There are many great ways to increase productivity, and wellness programs are one of them.

2. What improvements to target?

The way to design your wellness program should address specific needs and target personal wellness. Programs structured can target physical fitness and stamina through regular exercise, Zumba, or yoga classes for employees. This doesn’t only increase welfare but also improves self-image and self-esteem, which you want in your employees. At the same time, this also reduces the stress that your employees feel. Targeting specific health-related issues will translate into a more reliable workforce and smoother workflow.

3. What are the kinds of wellness programs you can implement?

There are tons of programs that a company can implement for the well-being of their employees. Be sure to provide flexibility in the programs so many of your employees can join in. Here are just some suggestions and recommendations for great employee wellness ideas:

  • Zumba Classes
  • Diet Guidance Programs
  • Physical Fitness Programs
  • Quit-Smoking Programs
  • Physiological Testing Programs
  • Stress Management Programs
  • Nutrition Classes
  • Blood Pressure Screening
  • Cholesterol Tracking
  • Fitness Tracking
  • Gym Plans
  • Guided Meditation Classes
  • Cooking Classes
  • Team Building Activities
  • Anxiety Workshop
  • Annual Corporate Flu Shots
  • Healthy Lifestyle Education
  • Mental Health Days
  • Emotional and Mental Health Education and Resources
  • Book Clubs
  • Healthy Potlucks

4. Healthy Snacks

With working for at least 8 hours a day, employees will grow well into the snacking culture in no time. Unfortunately, most companies only have low-quality vending machines that offer junk food such as soda, candy, and chips loaded with fat and sugar. These snacks not only decrease productivity, but it also makes a serious dent in the health and well-being of an employee. An excellent way to improve the nutrition of your employees is to provide easy access to healthier snack choices throughout the day.

5. Launch Health Competitions

Nothing else gets people off their chairs than incentives. If economics taught anything, it’s that people respond well to incentives. Why not incentivize health? Gamify employee fitness by starting challenges and giving incentives. For instance, you can start giving out gift certificates for the employee with the most visits to the gym or went running. You can also provide employees with fitness trackers to keep them in shape and encourage them. Another competition you can start is a step competition or walking challenge. You can give out cash incentives to those who hit step targets. The goal is to keep your employees in good shape, keep them motivated, and up on their feet.

6. Pet-Friendly Office Initiative

Another way that has been proven to keep employees motivated and increase productivity is to bring in your furry, four-legged friends to the office. These are tested and proved to improve collaboration among employees. Some offices even encourage to bring pets and have pets running around the office.

Keeping your employees healthy and educating them about well-being does reduce not only absences but also boosts productivity and efficiency in employees. Even though it costs very low, this initiative from companies can go a long way in helping out employees while benefiting the company. The connection between employee wellness and productivity has already been proven and well-established. Hope this guide was able to give you some tips on how employee wellness programs can help in boosting productivity and effectivity.

How to Reduce Employee Turnover Rate

StrategyDriven Talent Management Article | How to Reduce Employee Turnover RateEmployee turnover rate refers to the number or percentage of employees who leave an organization and have to be replaced by new workers. Employee turnover is a common issue affecting both big and small firms. The problem with employee turnover is that it costs a lot of money and time to replace an employee.

According to a report by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the average cost of replacing a single employee can be as high as $4,425. The cost of replacing an employee may include the onboarding and training expenses, severance benefits, and fees for processing technical details and documents. The figure also includes any time lost during the recruitment and onboarding process. So, how can you reduce or prevent employee turnover and avoid losing valuable time and resources?

Hire the Right People

The very first step towards avoiding a high turnover rate is hiring the right people to begin with. Create thorough hiring, recruitment, and onboarding process that sieves through the job applicants to find the most suitable candidates to work in your company.

Although skills and qualifications are important, selecting the right staff goes beyond examining academic and professional achievements. Scrutinize candidates on soft skills that would come in handy for the job position. Also, ask about the candidates’ career paths and goals to see if they align with what your company has to offer. These are excellent criteria to measure whether a candidate will be happy and satisfied with their position in the business.

Create A Flexible Work Environment

The 9-to-5 workplace regimen seems like an outdated and traditional workplace arrangement nowadays. Many employees are now looking for more flexible workplaces where they can balance their work and personal life more easily and conveniently. In fact, most employees value workplace flexibility more than other job descriptions.

Flexibility defines things like working hours, collaborations, workload, deadlines, and rules about absenteeism and reporting to work.  With modern IT solutions, you can have employees working from home, on a contract or freelancing basis, or even during odd hours. In such a case, however, you have to implement work from home policy guidelines to ensure accountability. Remember, the goal is to create a relaxed atmosphere without compromising productivity.

Offer Competitive Salaries and Benefits

One of the main reasons why people go to work is to earn money. Offering competitive salaries and benefits can help your business attract exceptional talent and retain employees. Money is a great incentive that you can use to lure employees into dedicating their time and effort to meeting the company’s goals.

You don’ even have to raise your salaries and benefits by thousands of dollars. Just take a look at what other employers in the same industry are paying their staff and raise your offering by a noticeable margin – and that should be enough to discourage competitors from poaching your employees.

Praise and Reward Exceptional Employees

Besides compensations, benefits, and salaries, you should also look into recognizing and rewarding exceptional work and employees. Recognizing your workers’ efforts and rewarding their hard work accordingly makes them feel valuable and important to the company. This gradually develops into building trust and long-lasting relationships between the employees and the employer. Plus, a fair reward and recognition system helps motivate morale and determination among the workers, which leads to higher employee satisfaction and productivity.

Many employers fail to see the importance of their employees, probably because they think they’re dispensable. However, your employees are most certainly one of the essential assets that your business has. Employees are the lifeblood of any organization that needs human input or labor, which is why they must be valued and appreciated. And although employees can be replaced, it’s a costly process, and a high turnover rate can hurt your operational costs and productivity significantly. So, work on ways of retaining your employees to avoid expensive surprises along the way.

Do Team-Building Activities At Work Have To Be Boring?

StrategyDriven Managing Your People Article | Entrepreneurship | Talent Management | Do Team-Building Activities At Work Have To Be Boring?It’s a new year and it’s time for another long hard look at your employees. What did they do that you liked or hated last year? Were there arguments among managers? Were junior employees left without leadership? Were there petty squabbles among employees that set deadlines back? Now is the perfect time of year to bring more cohesion to your workforce. From top to bottom, your employees need to forget about last year’s fights and look forward to the future together. It’s vital that your workforce remains a solid team so you can grow even larger and more successful than the previous decade. Yet, you may not have the time or the budget to take employees out on a day of team-building activities. It’s still possible to have them indoors at your office?

A personal piece

Inform your employees that you’re going to be holding a show and tell activity tomorrow. Instruct them to bring something along that matters to them a great deal, or has had a huge impact on them. Employees will sit in a circle and you’ll go around the room asking each person to show that special item. This is to evoke an image of who an employee is outside of work. Sharing something personal about yourself with colleagues will help you to understand why they are the type of person they are. It allows colleagues to feel more connected with the people they work with for 8 hours a day. The aim is to increase the bond between employees and therefore increase cooperation and productivity.

Futuristic racing

Move all the desks and chairs out of the way and call in TLC to set up their team drone racing challenge. They set up neon glowing bars that have been intricately shaped differently to present a gateway challenge. Entering the gates with a drone will be like reaching a checkpoint. You need to complete a set amount of laps in the first place to be declared the winning team. It’s fun, building friendships and isn’t dangerous at all. The courses can be set up within the size of a medium-sized room, so clearing a whole floor will be more than enough room. Employees have to work together as it’s two versus two affairs. You have to avoid bumping into each other while trying to block the other team’s drones on the circuit.

Scavenger hunt

Group your workers into pairs of four. One team will need to hide one item of each member’s workstation around the entire office. The other team will need to find these items. From a humble pencil holder to a keyboard, anything can be used as a prop. The team on the scavenger hunt is given a couple of minutes to find everything before returning to the starting point before the clock runs out. It takes cooperation and effective communication between colleagues, otherwise, they won’t be able to cover the most amount of ground in the shortest amount of time.

Team-building activities don’t have to be extravagant, they can be done right in the office. Futuristic drone racing is incredibly good fun and something employees won’t forget easily.

Office Ergonomics Are Key To Business Success

StrategyDriven Managing Your People Article |Office Ergonomics|Office Ergonomics Are Key To Business SuccessA good business is one that takes the health and safety of all its employees seriously and part of this is to consider good, sound ergonomic practice in the office space.

If employees are engaged in repetitive tasks that put their bodies under strain, over time, this will show in their performance and in their general wellbeing. This has a negative effect on their work and their ability to achieve in the longer term.

Standard office environments offer many different challenges to the health and wellbeing of employees and, over the last few years, the understanding of this has increased. However, gaining a greater knowledge of good office ergonomic practice is one of the most important ways in which employees can be happier, fulfilled and safer.

Why Businesses Must Take Ergonomics Seriously

Put simply, a good grounding in ergonomic practice can help minimize and prevent injuries and conditions that arise from repetitive office work. The most commonly reported concerns amongst employees are injuries to the musculoskeletal system, caused by sitting or standing in the same position for too long, and repetitive strain injuries from activities such as sitting and typing.

How To Implement Good Ergonomic Practice

These issues need to be addressed, and one way of doing this is by having face to face meetings with employees either via one to one interviews or a larger group conference so that everyone can talk and air their views together and workable solutions can be discussed.

Another good way of gaining a greater understanding is to look at hiring a team of people to come in and observe how employees work and how they interact and move within the office environment, noting any health and safety concerns as well as the types of activities being carried out. Information on how employees sit or stand, how they move around the office are all important, as are looking at what can be done to improve rest facilities and creating spaces so that staff can have separate areas to work and relax in.

From these observations, solutions can be derived. These can be as simple as providing better, and more comfortable and supportive office chairs and desks, to providing better solutions such as wall storage bins that require little in the way of repetitive bending or stretching to use, or office shelves placed at heights all people can reach without having to bend or stretch.

What Results Can Such Practices Offer?

The results of such observations mean that long term both the business and the employee will reap the benefits. There will be less time lost in disputes and sick leave, and employees will hopefully be happier and healthier as a result.

A business that looks after its staff will almost certainly see a rise in productivity levels, and reductions in compensation claims and occupational health appointments. Many companies often overlook the topic of ergonomics when considering staff health and wellbeing, considering it the least of their worries. However, a little time spent on this now can result in a happier, healthier and more productive workforce now and in the future too.