Employee happiness is important to any business, whether large or small. Employees who are happy in their roles are more likely to stay with you for longer and be more productive in their roles, so you save money in the long term. So, how do you keep employees happy, other than giving them a big pay rise? Here are some easy steps you can take.
Offer work/life balance
Not many people would list ‘work’ as their top priority in life, it often comes after family, kids, friends and hobbies, so make sure they have a great work/life balance. Only a third of employees are happy with their current work/life balance, with most citing long hours and pressure as creating a negative effect. Keeping to standard work hours, rather than making people feel bad for leaving at 5pm, means they’ll work harder to achieve tasks. If people are regularly coming in early or leaving late, it’s a sign that they’re either struggling with their role, or think they need to hang around the office to make an impression.
Find out their real opinions
Ask an employee directly whether they’re happy, and they’ll usually say yes. After all, they don’t want to lose their job! That’s why you should consider creating ways to get feedback anonymously. Inpulse engagement surveys are a good way to find out what your employees really think, what’s making them unhappy, and what they think is holding the company back. This kind of feedback is very valuable when you’re thinking of making changes.
Make sure they get breaks and time off
Breaks and paid holiday are mandatory under UK law, but getting people to actually take them can be a struggle. Again, you need to ensure that people know their job isn’t at risk if they take time off, and that their work will be covered. Only 43% of people take their full holiday allowance, meaning there are many people who take only a fraction of what they’re entitled too. Set up an easy to use holiday calendar and send reminders to book in advance, chasing up those who have large amounts left to take.
Offer career advancement
Nothing is more frustrating than working at the same job every day, not being sure where you’re going, or even if there are any opportunities to advance. Promoting from within is shown to have many benefits, but you often need people to apply internally and show interest in these roles. Make sure people get regular reviews and talk them through their career options. They should know the kind of roles they can move into, and if there’s nothing available at the moment, encourage them to upskill in preparation for promotions.
Create a positive work environment
Full-time workers spend more waking hours at work than they do at home, so a toxic environment will quickly make them miserable and unproductive. Make sure you encourage positive behaviour and let people learn from their mistakes, rather than creating an environment where people are afraid to slip up. Even small changes at work such as having a good coffee machine and some healthy workplace snacks can help people stay motivated on bad days, and encouraging regular exercise can help people stay healthy and take less sick time.