Editor’s note: This piece was originally published on the Namely Blog.
Research shows that highly engaged teams have 21 percent greater profitability than teams with low engagement scores. Investing in employee satisfaction not only makes for a better workplace, but it can also positively affect your business’ bottom line. Plus, maintaining employee satisfaction can have a positive effect on employee retention and turnover, saving you money and time in recruiting costs and helping your organization retain industry knowledge and expertise longer.
While there are a lot of factors that influence job satisfaction, some of the most common factors include communication, organizational transparency, work-life balance, management practices, office relationships, and employee recognition. Here, we look at four ways you can invest in employee satisfaction and keep your employees happy:
1. Show Appreciation
It’s often said that employees are a company’s greatest asset, and it’s no surprise as to why. Organizations can’t meet their goals and objectives without the contributions and efforts put forth by each employee. To keep employees at their happiest and most productive, however, it’s critical to express gratitude for their work. Recognition is a driving force behind employee satisfaction as it validates that their work is both acknowledged and valued.
With National Employee Appreciation Day drawing near on March 6th, take the time to give thanks to your hard-working employees with a celebratory event, such as a company-sponsored lunch. Or, if the weather is compliant, plan a company retreat with fun team-building activities! But always remember that it’s important to show appreciation regularly, not just once a year. A personalized, hand-written thank-you note is a small but powerful gesture that employers can use at any time to demonstrate their appreciation.
2. Prioritize Health and Wellness
Many employers offer some form of a workplace wellness program as a strategy to lower the company’s health insurance expenses or their employees’ health insurance premiums, amongst other advantages. But providing preventative health programs and incentives can help organizations build rapport with their employees because it allows employers to show that they care about the well-being of their workers.
If you want a successful workplace wellness program with high employee participation, you’ll want one that aligns its offerings to fit a wide range of lifestyles, such as a customizable weight loss program. Systems that focus on each individual’s personal attributes like age, activity level, and even food preferences make it easier to achieve weight loss goals and maintain healthy habits in the long run. And since several health issues like high blood pressure, diabetes, and fatigue are shown to improve with weight loss, employees who engage in workplace weight loss programs are more likely to see an increase in energy, focus, attitude, and productivity!
3. Effectively Manage People
The extent to which an organization’s human resource department effectively manages its people can have a significant impact on each employee’s experience and satisfaction. But with a wide array of growing HR tasks, including hiring, onboarding, training, tracking attendance, organizing payroll, and approving time off, the quality of workflow can suffer, especially as an organization expands in size.
Fortunately, HR software solutions can help to simplify and streamline HR processes by automating several tasks. With this technology, employees can easily request time off, review their pay-stubs, navigate their benefits, and access necessary information or data on their own. When employees become more self-serving, they feel more engaged and connected. But more importantly, with fewer tasks to manage, HR personnel can have more time to dedicate towards other initiatives that increase employee satisfaction and retention.
4. Encourage Office Socialization
While some may feel that socializing in the workplace leads to distractions and other issues, it can actually be quite beneficial for employees as well as the organization. Research shows that developing close friendships and relationships at work boosts employee satisfaction by as much as 50 percent. Aside from the mood-boosting effects of socializing, forming friendships with co-workers can make time at work more enjoyable by fostering mutually beneficial support systems, and in turn, a sense of belonging—which can naturally influence employees to stay at a company longer.
There are a variety of ways that employers and managers can encourage workplace friendships through work-related initiatives and activities outside of the office. For starters, employers can assign a mentor for new-hires to show them around and help them integrate with current employees and company culture. Better yet, organizations might consider promoting socialization outside of the office walls, whether it be through coffee meet-ups or happy hours. Pairing unfamiliar co-workers together for a cup of Joe gives colleagues a chance to connect when they otherwise might not. The same goes for a company-wide happy hour!
Understanding what your employees need in order to feel satisfied in their role at your organization is essential for continued success. Whether you offer wellness perks or adjust management styles, creating a positive work environment for everyone is a simple yet rewarding approach that will keep your organization and employees thriving!