6 Ways to Increase Employee Productivity

With the ‘Great Resignation’ placing pressure on executives and managers to retain employees, discussing productivity might not now be seen as the right time.

Employees are already overworked, covering for workers who have left. However, productivity is now more than ever topical and of urgent attention.

There is a correlation between staff engagement, productivity, and retention.

A business will increase retention and engagement if productivity is boosted. This is even more important since workers want to be productive.

The Formula to Boost Productivity (Engagement and Retention):

1. Proposed Learning Opportunities to increase Worker Productivity

According to the U.S. National Center for Education Statistics, education boosts productivity. The various types of education can include online courses.

An example is Mads Singers courses on management, training programs, skills-building programs, or accredited certificate programs.

More so, with the internet, it’s easy to enroll a staff member into a class without causing too much disruption while completing the course. 

The online education platform Udemy has indicated that more than 50% of high-engagement businesses have staff that spends around 31 to 50 hours each year on further learning.

Also, LinkedIn’s Workforce Learning has indicated that 95% of staff members would remain at a company where the company offers them learning opportunities. Learning increases productivity, engagement, and retention. 

Businesses can contribute to learning by providing access to platforms like LinkedIn Learning or Udemy. Businesses can give tuition help programs (in some countries, this expense can be deducted from taxes), promoting learning contests and incentive programs.

2. Spend on Technology to Increase Worker Productivity 

Spending funds on productivity technology is closely connected to learning. Spending likewise drives productivity, engagement, as well as retention.

However, research by Gallup has indicated that only 36% of U.S. employees are engU.S., and less than 50% consider that they don’t have the right technology to do their work effectively. 

As with education, investing in proper hardware (and software) can boost productivity by nearly 66%. Assessing the COVID-19 pandemic and how companies reacted to it, those who did not spend on video conferencing, laptops, and mobile phones fell behind.

Those that did saw a 4.3% increase in productivity in the first quarter of 2021. More so, 83% of staff indicated that technology, mainly digital technology, permitted them to work remotely and be more engaged. Plus, 82% of staff interviewed stated that engagement was directly related to the quality of the technology. 77% of staff members considered seeking alternative employment should their current employer fall short of investing in suitable digital technology. 

Moreover, productivity investment in technology not only increases productivity but also boosts engagement as well as retention. Ways to boost productivity include investing in video conferencing, adding project management tools, and using cloud-based platforms to store and access documents.

3. Support Staff Wellness to Increase Worker Productivity

Staff wellness should be central to level C executives and H.R. managers. The reason for this is that wellness programs can boost productivity.

In noting that 95% of staff would consider moving to another job, burnout was the main reason for workers considering relocating.

We should analyze the term burnout, the main reason for the Great Resignation in the U.S. This condition encompasses, rather than simply, feeling tired or somewhat overworked. Instead, burnout refers to chronic stress that leads to detachment, depression, exhaustion, and a feeling of uselessness.

Applying a corporate wellness program can, to some extent, avoid this state. Burnout decreases productivity while escalating poor work performance. A wellness program could counter this and, more so, help to retain staff members. 

Wellness, like technology and learning, increases productivity, engagement, and retention. A corporate wellness program will depend on the individual business.

In most cases, this includes gym membership to assist with stress reduction and counseling offered as part of a mental health program. Do not forget that the happiness of workers is central to any wellness program. 

What is more, the benefits of wellness programs include mental health, stress management, and burnout prevention.

4. Increase Worker Productivity with Appreciation

Staff recognition is a low-cost but high-impact productivity, engagement, and retention mechanism. Only 33% of U.S. staff believe they receive merchandise for their work.

Most workers (the other 66%) feel unrecognized and are more inclined to resign and move to a different company. Plus, offering recognition is directly linked to staff engagement. There appears to be a disconnect between level C executives and how they manage people effectively. 

Recognition is known to affect productivity and engagement, in addition to retention. Offering praise boosts productivity by 30%. Moreover, this recognition is worth more than a salary increase. In contrast, lack of credit is a reason for many to seek alternative employment.

Recognition could be as simple as a certificate or some time off provided to endorse a worker’s value to the company.

5. Increase Worker Productivity by Listening

Companies closing and workers conducting their work remotely have indicated that one communication skill, namely, listening, is critical. Workers were dealing with many and varied interruptions, such as by family members and pets: all these distractions can influence their listening abilities.

Listening is related to recognition. This is because you recognize a staff member if you stop and listen to him or her. In turn, this boosts productivity. More so, 41% of high-performance companies conduct surveys of their staff sentiments.

Some 28% of low-performance businesses monitor staff sentiment. About 27% of high-performance businesses offer feedback mechanisms, whereas 7% of low-performance companies do not offer feedback mechanisms at all. 

Listen to your staff, and you can boost productivity. More so, 63% of workers want feedback, compared with only 27% who do not wish for input from employers.

To listen to workers, run polls on their job satisfaction. Utilize yearly staff engagement surveys. It also offers a chat channel for staff members to obtain feedback without providing details.

However, despite companies in the U.S. spending around $700 million to increase U.S.gement through research efforts, the engagement level is a mere 35%. More so, 30% of workers believe their company efforts are meaningless.

6. Increase Worker Productivity with a Virtual Assistant

Employing a virtual or remote assistant became even more meaningful during the pandemic. Like the traditional virtual assistant, many people worked remotely but cost companies the expected outlay.

A remote assistant is there to do the same type of work but often at a lower wage. However, the compensation may be considered suitable in the remote country. This is a win-win situation. Most V.A.s will tackle arduous and unexciting repetitive tasks such as data entry, invoicing, payment, email management, and scheduling.

What the virtual assistant can do to help onsite workers boost their productivity is to take over the admin tasks. The company will benefit − hiring a V.A. will be lower than hiring an onsite worker.

The onsite worker will be able to focus on their core work – the work they were hired to do. More so, executives and managers can also benefit from the freed time. Onsite workers and executives can save up to 16 hours weekly on these daily tasks.

To Round Up: 6 Ways to Increase Employee Productivity

Disengaged workers could cost a company $3400 for each $10000 of yearly salary simply in lost productivity. This equates to up to 4 months of lost productivity per year, not to mention the time spent hiring new workers − only for them to leave the company.

However, remedies include investing in education, offering wellness programs, employing proper communication, importing new technology, and onboarding virtual assistants to handle administrative work. 

The result will be increased productivity, but also engagement and retention. With this in mind, Virgin founder Richard Branson opined, “Customers come second, employees first.” This is a philosophy that brings unexpected benefits to both the company and its clients.

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