6 Tips for Creating the Ideal Work Environment for Employees
by Shaunda Wickham | August 14, 2019
In this current climate, finding the ideal candidate may be a little tougher than usual. Unemployment is the lowest it’s been in years, and according to the Wall Street Journal, skilled workers are so limited, that in many cases, business owners are forced to hire anyone willing to take the open positions, skilled or not.
As mentioned previously, employee turn-over costs businesses billions of dollars annually, and replacing an employee could cost between 90 and 200 percent of their annual salary. This can become a cost that feels out of your control, especially when you hire someone who you know is not right for the job.
To combat this, you need to become more attractive to the higher skilled employees. You need to create a work environment that can compete against any other offer they may receive.
Here are six ways to ensure that your company is attracting the right people.
- Competitive Pay
This may seem like a no brainer, but no matter what other changes you may make to make your business more attractive, compensation will often be the deciding factor for an employee. Many business owners will choose a salary based on what he or she feels the job is worth, and not necessarily what the job market is actually indicating. Before you even post the position, be sure you do your research. You may even want to leave compensation out of the job description and when you find the right candidate, ask them what they are looking for and see how that compares to the current rate.
Understanding your current employees’ needs and developing an atmosphere of transparency and trust is key. Potential employees want to know that they will be valued and that they can trust leadership to follow through. One way to improve communication is to do an employee assessment, like the Turbo-Charge Any Team™ analysis, which is provided by the Florida SBDC Network. Not every employee is created equal, and understanding each individual’s strengths, weaknesses and preferred method of communication, will increase engagement, efficiency and success.
- Work/Life Balance
As a business owner, your business is more than likely based on a deep-rooted passion. It is something you created, nourished and spent most of your waking hours developing. Though this may be true for you, you must realize that your employees have their own passions they want to pursue. It is important to enable your employees to keep a balance between their work and personal lives. Offering flexibility by allowing employees to create their own hours or providing them opportunities to work from home, will boost morale and make your business more attractive to potential hires.
- Professional Development
It is rare to find an individual who accepts a position with the aspiration that they will be in that same position for the next 20 years. If the employee is a dedicated hard worker, they are likely to aspire to continue to grow and advance in their career. Create an environment that is conducive to that mentality and allow opportunities for them to advance and grow with the company. When you create a new position or make a new hire, you should also offer a professional development program and create a customized career path for that employee within your company. Allowing them to achieve personal professional goals, will create a sense of loyalty and decreases the chances of losing valuable employees.
Showing gratitude consistently is a great motivator for employees. Knowing that the work they do is valued and appreciated motivates them to try harder and reach for higher goals. Be genuine in your recognition and remember that moods are contagious. If you are giving out positive and gracious vibes, it will spread to your employees and they will be positive and courteous with one another and that attitude will spread to clients, increasing the likelihood of creating loyal clients. Similarly, if you walk around with a negative outlook and offer no recognition for achievements, employees will become bitter and your best employees will begin to look elsewhere. They want to know that their time and effort means something and that they are valuable and respected. Make sure that you consistently express genuine gratitude.
- Be Creative
When a skilled worker is considering which company to work for, they may see that companies offer similar benefits across the board. Being creative with your incentives will allow your company to stand out and be more attractive to that potential hire. Offering things such as flexible schedules, community service opportunities, gym memberships, catered lunches or company outings may be that extra incentive to tip of the scale in your favor. Investing in your employee is just another way to invest in your company. These are things that you can incorporate into the budget and will again boost morale and loyalty with your skilled employees.
Creating this workplace utopia does not mean letting people relax and slack off. Quite the opposite, actually. It is allowing you the opportunity to be attractive to the best of the best in this low unemployment climate. These six items will boost morale and inspire employees to come to work every day with a positive attitude and a willingness to strive for their best.
Contributing content provided by Kyle King and Michael Noel.