Are you aware of what your employees want?


Are you aware of what your employees want?

I read this article today “8 ways to create the workplace employees want” and found it to be very interesting.

 The article begins by stating that there is a transition from layoff mode to hiring; however, companies my find that job-seekers have changed their definition—and expectations—of employee benefits. Has your organization experienced this?

There seems to be a trend in that employees are beginning to demand everything from more comfortable workspaces to employer practices that nurture the psychological well-being of the workforce.

A report by Sodexo identified eight workplace trends—including a that I actually had not considered—that offer personal and professional benefits that could become standard t aim to recruit, retain and engage today’s best job candidates.

Here you go:

1. Diversity pays

The most diverse businesses have the largest pool of job candidates to choose from. The Sodexo report notes that several studies have linked gender diversity—especially when women are in top management positions—with better financial performance.

2. Intangibles are real

Employees want flexibility, recognition for a job well done and decision-making authority almost as much as they want money. Simple perks like the opportunity to attend a conference or join an important committee can make an employee happier, more loyal and more eager to please.

Tip: Don’t rely on money alone to prompt desired behavior. Encourage managers to discover what is important to each of their employees, and use that knowledge to craft nonmonetary “bonuses” that employees will work hard to earn.

3. Well-being is essential

Research shows a link between employee well-being and performance. Effective organizations have cultures that encourage trust, openness, fairness and respect among employees, and between bosses and workers. They work to increase employee involvement, invest in employees’ health and safety, offer development opportunities, promote work/life balance and recognize employees’ contributions.

Tip: Broaden your definition of employee health to include mental health and overall well-being. Seek benefits that reflect that ethos.

4. Pay for productivity rising

It’s replacing pay for hours worked. That’s crucial when employees work remotely, where bosses can’t easily supervise them. Aligning the reality of a virtual workforce with the business objectives of the firm is a huge challenge for HR pros—and for the managers whose employees work off-site.

Tip: Train your managers how to engage, motivate and incorporate teleworkers into the team.

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5. A good environment is vital

Employees often judge an employer’s commitment to employees by the quality of the workspace. The message to staff is “You’re on your own” if you put off repairs or don’t offer a break room with basic amenities like a coffee pot and refrigerator. (In-house cafeterias and gyms are strictly optional.)

Tip: Consider the first impression your workplace makes on a prospective employee. A building that is too hot or cold or that looks shabby can leave the would-be new hire with the perception that your company doesn’t care about its employees.

6. Design drives productivity

Good workspace design reflects the kind of work to be done, allowing for collaboration, social interaction, privacy, quiet and supervision.

Tip: When you design or redesign the areas where your employees work, get employees involved. Have architects and designers meet with employees at every level to talk about how they work and what they need and expect from their workspaces.

7. Flexibility is mainstream

It’s no longer a special program for working moms. Flex improves productivity and employee engagement and lowers turnover. It’s so engrained in many corporate cultures that they don’t consider it an employee benefit anymore. It’s just a normal part of doing business.

Tip: If your organization yanked flex during the recession, it’s time to restore it. As hiring picks up, companies that allow telework, flextime, part time, compressed or reduced workweeks, job sharing and other nontraditional work arrangements will have a competitive edge.

8. A mix works best

Workplace solutions are most effective when they work in tandem.

Tip: Include employees in the conversation about any proposed solution to a problem that stems from employee behavior—like lack of engagement, low productivity or high turnover. You might be surprised by how well they can solve their own problems, given the chance.

If you have good functional skills and consider yourself a “people person,” then everything will naturally fall into place, right? Not necessarily. What you don’t see can diminish effective communication and damage your career or organization. Communication breakdowns can lead to legal issues, decreased employee morale and even a lack of product performance.

Source: HR News

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