Improving employee efficiency is something every employer should consider - particularly in the current climate. The economy could take a long time to recover from the COVID-19 outbreak, so bosses must do all they can to help their business run smoothly and increase profitability once things get back to normal.
There are many ways you can help boost employee productivity, some of which are very simple. As well as making changes in everyday working practices, you can make physical changes to the office environment. Businesses should be considering extra steps to improve the office before employees return to work after the current lockdown.
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Letting more natural light and fresh air into the indoor environment is a great place to start. Research suggests that many offices, particularly those built in the late 20th century, haven't taken into account how important natural light can be.
The "Light and Health" study conducted by researchers at the University of Adelaide claimed the phenomena known as "sick building syndrome" largely occurred because of the poor air quality and general environment of the affected offices.
Working in fluorescent lighting, with a lack of natural daylight, was identified as a factor causing headaches and eye-strain. Employees ended up feeling lethargic, they had more headaches, felt continually tired and suffered poor concentration. This led to a drop in productivity and staff taking more time off sick.
Improving the air quality by letting fresh air circulate is a major factor. Making staff feel better, this leads to greater productivity.
According to research by Joseph Allen, a professor at Harvard School of Public Health, stuffy rooms make people feel tired and distracted. Allen, an expert in improving working environments, says when fresh air comes in, it's "incredibly rejuvenating".
Rather than employees working in a stuffy indoor environment, with just the occasional gust from an open window, he advocates making the office as healthy as possible all the time. As well as having more fresh air, bringing indoor plants into the workplace can also improve air quality.
Once you have the environment right, it's easier to implement working practices that can improve employee efficiency. Training and development are the keys to happier staff. Companies who don't organise proper training for employees because it appears time-consuming and costly are guilty of a false economy.
It can lead to workers trying to complete a task haphazardly, making mistakes, losing enthusiasm and feeling increasingly dissatisfied with their job. It's far better to support employee development from the start, with training sessions, individual coaching sessions, courses, workshops and seminars. This will give employees the skills they need to complete their tasks effectively, while boosting morale and productivity at the same time.
Regardless of the sector, employees are your company's most important asset. Their skillsets and abilities are crucial to your success!
Careful staff planning is the key. During a hectic working day, it can be time-consuming to fulfil this requirement, so it can be beneficial to utilise a professional staff planning solution to assist with your workforce management.
Cut out unnecessary tasks and keep goals clear and focused. Determine which daily tasks are important and which are simply wasting time. For example, if every employee is required to write a daily report for their line manager, who seldom has time to read it, this is clearly surplus to requirements.
Make sure employees’ duties are as clear and useful as possible, working towards recognised, shared goals. Ensure everyone knows what's expected of them, the impact their duties have on the company's goals as a whole and their deadlines for specific tasks.
If employees think they are doing certain tasks that are a waste of time, and they have no idea what the benefits of these tasks are, then productivity will slide as dissatisfaction sets in.
When assigning a staff member to a task, many companies adopt the SMART approach - creating specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely goals. This helps each worker to remain focused and efficient.
Your company's processes should be transparent to increase productivity and reduce costs. Highlighting the weaker points, a data collection solution can assist by providing fast and accurate job recording and operational sequences.
ZEUS® Time and Attendance is a cost-efficient, time-saving, workforce management solution to assist with HR management and administration. Contact ISGUS UK for further information about our products and services. Let’s hit the ground running!