Keeping your employees engaged is a key to business success. Linda Lucarelli, a senior HR Consultant with Paychex, Inc., and host Dennis Zink discuss ways to engage employees and avoid the high cost of turnover.
Published: Monday, June 1, 2015.
EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT is an important part of an organization’s function and culture. Your employees need to be engaged and adequately prepared to satisfy your customers.
The best way to know if your employees are engaged is if they come to work and do their job with a great attitude.
Do your employees feel that they are part of the organization as a whole?
Keep them engaged by encouraging their feedback, recommendations, suggestions and ideas on processes and procedures.
If employees feel like they’re a part of the organization, part of the mission and what they do matters, they are going to be more engaged and happier in their jobs.
Customer service is a huge part of engagement. Make sure that your employees who interact with customers feel good about your organization.
If your employees are engaged, then low turnover is one of the benefits to be derived.
Turnover is expensive. Some of the costs of turnover include lost productivity, advertising expenses to post the job, time spent reviewing résumés, scheduling and interviewing candidates, on-boarding, orientation, job training and other intangible costs.
It is important that your company offers a competitive compensation plan. Conduct a market analysis to get an idea of what the salaries and benefits are for different positions in your industry. Your benefits package and other employee perks need to be competitive for employee retention and company growth.
Make sure that, as a manager, you stay involved with your employees. If you see that an employee who was engaged is backing off, not participating in meetings, maybe doesn’t give a lot of feedback anymore, or becomes negative, those might be signs that that employee is not happy. Perhaps it’s time for a heart-to-heart meeting to discuss any problems.
They may not feel like they’re valued or respected in the workplace. Maybe they feel there’s a lack of growth or opportunity. As a manager, it’s important to develop the skill level of your employees, provide continuous opportunity and let them be creative. There are a variety of reasons besides compensation that could be a reason for an employee feeling less engaged. Maybe an employee is uncomfortable with their manager or the way their manager communicates with them.
Communication skills for managers are vital to ensure that employees feel like they are having a one-on-one dialogue and it’s not just “do this” or “do that” as a one-way street.
Employees appreciate the opportunity to learn new skills, stay engaged on a daily basis and be an integral part of the organization.
Most organizations have a mission statement that outlines the purpose of the organization. It answers the questions of what your organization stands for, what you believe in and what your values are. It is important for your employees to be a part of that mission. Problems arise when the mission and those values are not executed or communicated to the employees.
If the organization has gone through downsizing or some economic downturn, there are probably concerns about layoffs. It is important for owners and managers to come together and be the cheerleaders for the company. The message should be, “We might have had some tough times, but this is what we’re going to do. We’re lean, mean and ready to go forward into the future. This is our message and we want you to be a part of this success.”
HR and other policies
It is important to have clear-cut policies and for your management and HR team to understand boundaries — what they can and cannot do — to regulate the workplace.
Create an employee handbook outlining do’s and don’ts — including a social media policy. This policy should be monitored and communicated to employees. Meet and discuss what the company rules are regarding social media.
Company policies are the first line of defense and exist to protect your business. It is important to communicate clearly what your company stands for from the moment a prospective employee considers working for you. This process may begin as early as when a prospective employee views your website or the first time they schedule an interview.
Make sure that the on-boarding process is smooth and not chaotic. See to it that an applicant opening the front door is welcomed.
Your mission, values and company culture represent your organization. Create the type of environment conducive to attracting and hiring the best and brightest. Have a consistent message throughout the employee life cycle until they leave your company.
Do the best you can to develop a desirable company culture. Be certain that your employees understand that they are an important part of that culture.
Doing these things will pay big benefits for your company.