When trying to improve workplace productivity, there are four key elements. Focusing on these elements individually will yield results, but nothing as great as a diverse approach. Employee productivity boils down to motivation, and different people are motivated in different ways. Only taking one approach just won’t work. You will need to focus on morale, money, respect, and working conditions to ensure that you get the biggest bang for your buck.
Happy employees are generally more productive than unhappy ones. This means you will have to actually listen to, and act on, your employees’ issues. One of your employees will have a problem every day. While it may not seem important to you, it’s important to them. You need to act on everything, no matter how small, like it is a life or death matter. Your employees will see this as an act of respect and caring on your part. If you care about what they need, they will care about what your company needs.
Nothing motivates some people more than cash bonuses. This can be great, but you don’t want to blow too much money on productivity bonuses. Giving out too many cash bonuses can lead to a loss in profit. This can look bad even though you may have great productivity. Before you set up cash bonuses, determine whether the productivity increase justifies the amount you are paying.
Employee respect goes hand in hand with morale. If your employees are not happy, it will be much harder to get them to respect your company. Respect can be gained by being fair and consistent. You may think you are being fair and consistent, but make sure that you get your employees’ opinions too. A suggestion box can yield some great improvement ideas. If your people have a way to voice their concerns anonymously without fear of consequence, they will respect you for it. This will only work if you make changes based on the suggestion box, and let them know you are doing it. If you don’t act on the suggestions, it’s just a box.
Slightly changing your employees’ operating conditions can naturally increase productivity without your employees being aware. Sometimes this is as simple as adding a fan in a hot work area or offering workstation assessments. Other times you may have to identify bottlenecks in your system and figure out a way to eliminate them. If you are able to eliminate bottlenecks, your employees will be more consistent while they work. If you notice there are a lot of unplanned breaks for your employees, there may be bottlenecks in your systems that are slowing them down.
The bottom line
Employing all of these methods to increase workplace productivity can reduce payroll on a massive scale. If you are able to implement changes on a company level, the gross profit may show a significant increase. Simple, inexpensive steps like increasing morale and garnering respect will go a long way to improve employee productivity, but it’s important to include physical and monetary rewards as well.