10 Tips to Increase Employee Productivity

Productivity, HR, Management


10 Tips to Increase Employee Productivity

High productivity, remains one of the primary goals of companies and their leaders. Companies want to inspire productivity in employees because that’s what drives profitability. Companies also want to know who their most productive employees are, and how to keep them.
After all, if they leave, they take their high productivity with them, and there’s no guarantee of a good replacement. So how can companies increase employee productivity?

360-Degree Performance Reviews
Performance reviews communicate to employees that the company takes performance, and their level of productivity, very seriously. By making the review process 360-degrees, companies include the assessments of not just superiors, but their peers, the people they manage, and even a self-evaluation. This keeps reviews balanced.

Performance reviews also force companies to define employees’ roles in the company, as well as what counts as satisfactory and excellent work. This makes measuring productivity much easier, company-wide. To show the value of performance reviews, companies should also provide bonuses and promotions accordingly, to encourage healthy competition.

Great Healthcare
Companies with a healthy workforce experience greater productivity for a number of reasons. Employees take less sick days, leading to more productive days in the office. Also, there are fewer employees at work suffering from ailments affecting their ability to perform. And finally, great health care means fewer employees at work stressing over their personal health and that of their families.
To this end, companies should provide comprehensive healthcare allowing employees to add their family members and dependents, and which covers at least their basic needs. Great health care should also provide assistance with mental health-related problems such as stress, grief, and addictions.

Employee Engagement
The more engaged employees are, the more they feel they have a stake in the company well-being. Companies can engage employees by involving them in the decision-making process, and deferring to experts.

Companies should also keep employees informed about what’s going on from top-level management decisions all the way down, even when employees cannot have a say in the process.
Another way to engage employees is to provide as much autonomy over their work as possible. This is especially important in fields requiring some degree of creativity and innovation; such as app development, marketing, and fashion.

Effective Grievance Procedures
Poor employee relationships negatively affect productivity as employees may brood over slights or take actions that sabotage a team or the company. To prevent this from happening, the company must ensure the human resources department has a fair and effective structure in place to deal with grievances.

In many instances, companies should put an anonymous reporting process in place, as many employees may fear retaliation for reporting more serious issues like bribery, deliberate security breaches, or sexual assault.

The company should also have policies in place to protect whistleblowers from retaliation, as sometimes employees must identify themselves as the victim for a proper investigation and resolution to occur.

Assistance with Education
An educated workforce is a skilled and confident workforce, prepared to take on any task. However, assistance with education does not always have to mean paying college tuition.
This is great news for smaller companies lacking the resources for that level of investment. Instead, the company can invest more in training employees, in providing self-learning resources, and in paying for professional certifications.

Flexible Work Schedules
People are most productive doing what they want to do when they want. They are also most productive when work does not interfere with personal obligations, especially with children involved.
While a company cannot cater to every whim, it’s important to provide some flexibility. This might include options like compressed workweeks, flextime, and telecommuting. This is especially important for working mothers, employees with elderly or sick dependents, and students.

Proper Breaks
A lot of companies provide a half hour to an hour lunch on paper, but in practice, often expect employees to eat while working at their desk. While this might seem to increase productivity for an employee, what it causes is burnout, and decreased productivity later in the day.
Taking breaks to eat and clear their minds, help employees to reset before moving forward with the workday. This is why schools, especially colleges, usually provide longer and multiple breaks throughout the day. A refreshed mind is a more focused mind, a less stressed mind, and a more productive mind.

Provide Resources
Even the most hardworking employee will plateau quickly, and maybe even hit decline, when struck with the roadblock of inadequate resources. While this is something startups struggle with, larger and more established companies have no excuse. To ensure a job is well done, provide the right – and where possible, the best – tools available.

Reduce Turnover
With unemployment at record highs around the world, many companies may think it’s easy to fire a complaining employee and hire someone else. Or maybe, it doesn’t matter if that employee quits. Plenty more where they came from, right? Wrong. High turnover rates negatively impact the productivity of a company, and by extension, its profitability. And if your firm develops a reputation for high turnover, the best candidates will pass on any offers immediately, not willing to take the risk.
There are high costs in the human resource department related to recruiting, hiring, and retraining new employees. Also, no matter how well-educated and highly experienced an individual is, every company does business differently, and may use its own internal systems. This creates a learning curve for new hires, which means for a time, that new employee is nowhere near as productive as the one who was fired, or quit.

Create Great Work Environments
There’s a reason companies like Google and Facebook invest in making offices spaces fun and inviting. Great work environments make people want to come to work, and keep them in a good mood throughout the day. Creating great work environments doesn’t necessarily mean every company should have slides down to the cafeteria, and huts with hammocks, in place of cubicles.
Companies can take more practical steps, like using soothing colors, comfortable desks, and chairs, more privacy at cubicles or adding flowers and paintings. These simple steps beautify the office, making it inviting for employees and customers.

Inspiring productivity in employees isn’t rocket science, and with these ten tips, any company could be on their way to encouraging employees to work harder, and smarter.

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Business & Marketing Tips: 10 Tips to Increase Employee Productivity
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