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HR & Employee Productivity: Strategies for Creating a Healthier and More Focused Workforce


Posted by Insightlink on 08/11/23

It’s in every company’s best interest to boost employee productivity. When employees work productively, they complete their tasks and projects efficiently, helping businesses achieve their goals faster. 

Also, today’s business landscape is fast-paced, competitive, and ever-evolving. Having a team full of productive employees helps companies stay a step ahead because they’re committed to consistently producing quality work that keeps the company thriving.
 
Although ensuring employee productivity is a collective effort, Human Resources (HR) professionals play a significant role. HR is responsible for fostering employee engagement, supporting employee health and well-being, and creating a workplace environment they can thrive in. Incorporate these strategies to help you create a healthier and more focused workforce and inspire productive employees.
 
healthy workforce
 

 

Make an Effort to Get to Know Every Employee

 
Every employee is different. Their skill sets, goals, backgrounds, and experiences vary. This also means that what motivates employees to be productive and what they need to be highly effective in their roles differs.
 
Getting to know each employee more profoundly is beneficial for fueling productivity. If you understand what an employee needs and how to best uplift them, you can provide them with these things to boost productivity.
 
You’ll start relationships with employees in the onboarding process. Introduce yourself as their HR point of contact. Guide them through their HR paperwork and answer any questions they have about their new role. Take them on a tour through the office and introduce them to their managers and team.
 
Continue your contact with employees throughout training. Check in with them periodically after the onboarding process is complete.
 
Finally, take every opportunity, whether in a formal training meeting or in passing in the office, to engage in conversation with employees. Slowly but surely you’ll build relationships with employees that go beyond the surface.
 

Proactively Identify Practices Negatively Affecting Productivity

 
As vital as it is to know what prompts productivity in employees, it’s just as critical to understand what decreases workplace productivity. If you can identify why employee productivity is lacking, you can address these factors to get motivation and engagement back on track.
 
For example, many leaders praise employees who can multitask. But trying to juggle multiple projects and tasks at a time can lead to low-quality work because employees are stressed out and overwhelmed. Knowing this, you can work with management to enforce manageable workloads to reduce the chances of burnout.
 
Another issue that contributes to decreased productivity is a lack of recognition. If employees do great work and never get acknowledged for it, they aren’t likely to do that great work for long. What’s the point of putting in so much effort for a company that doesn’t value or appreciate it?
 
You can advocate for and build an employee recognition program comprised of incentives, regular feedback, and growth opportunities that ensures employees get the praise they deserve.
 
You can ask employees directly what’s inhibiting their productivity through surveys and one-on-one conversations. You can also do observations to gain insight into productivity woes.
 

Implement Initiatives Promoting Healthy Habits

 
The health and well-being of employees is directly connected to their productivity levels. Employees need to be physically and mentally well to do their best work.
 
For instance, let’s say an employee works in the warehouse packing and shipping orders. They must be able to stand and move for long periods, as well as lift and use machines to complete their orders. They must be focused to pack and ship orders accurately. They must also be mentally well to stay safe while using machines and other tools.
 
HR can push for initiatives that promote employee health and well-being.
 
Consider working with healthcare providers to build initiatives that promote better brain health and mental wellness. You could put together a nutrition program that includes foods that improve brain health, like eggs, whole grains, and water, and distribute it to employees. Couple this with access to free or reduced-cost therapy or counseling to support mental health.
 
Here are a few more ideas to promote healthy habits among employees:
 
  • Offer flexible scheduling options;
  • Provide free gym memberships;
  • Host a wellness week each year;
  • Have only healthy snacks in vending machines;
  • Enter a weight loss challenge as a company;
  • Share mental and physical health resources on the company intranet.
 
Ultimately, boosting employees' holistic health ensures their physically capable and cognitively sound, keeping them highly productive.
 

Create an Employee Development Program

 
One of the best ways to empower and motivate employees is to invest in their professional development. According to SHRM’s 2022 Workplace Learning & Development Trends report, 76% of employees said that they would stay at a company that offers continuous training.
 
This is because training and development get them to the next level in their careers. They appreciate the company for prioritizing their professional development and are more likely to be loyal to that company because of it. They’re likely to be more productive too, as most people want to do all they can for the people that help them in meaningful ways.
 
Work with leadership to create a detailed employee development program. It should be flexible enough to be tailored to each employee. It should also include instruction and mentorship from managers and other company leaders to show the company is truly supportive of its employees’ growth.
 

Conclusion

 
Employee productivity is the lifeblood of any business. Without employees that are highly engaged and committed in their roles, it’s much harder to achieve business goals efficiently, let alone at all.
 
By digging into your duty to create a healthier, more focused workforce, you’ll foster a productive workplace that will make employees want to stay with your company for years to come.
 
Get to know each employee personally, proactively identify practices that harm productivity, launch employee health initiatives, and prioritize their professional development to get the most out of workers.
 
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