If you want to be successful in an ever-shifting business world, you have to be willing to roll with the changes. Whether it’s updating your technologies, diversifying your workforce, or changing your approach to attracting and retaining talent, you’ve got to stay current with today’s workplace processes and demands.
If you’re still hanging on to your old processes and policies, it’s time to start thinking outside last year’s (or last decade’s) employee handbook.
Are you stuck in a time warp?
Every business has its own unique set of needs, and workplace policies should rightfully reflect them. Retail and manufacturing companies can’t always offer work-at-home options. Banks and insurance companies might not be able to say yes to shorts and flip-flops. But chances are you have at least one HR policy or practice that’s worth revisiting in order to make your company more appealing to current staff and potential new employees.
Not sure where to start? Here are two things to quickly eliminate if you’re interested in attracting and retaining top-notch talent.
1.) Unfriendly hiring practices
Your hiring process says a lot about who you are as an organization. An ineffective, unprofessional or exhausting interview process will send fantastic candidates running. In the other direction.
If you require five years of experience, three separate interviews, and a 1,500-word essay for an entry level position, chances are you’re going to do one of two things:
- Scare well intentioned applicants away
- Set unrealistic expectations about the significance/pay/potential of the job
Sure, you’re looking to find a highly capable person, but the last thing you want is a first-pick candidate who turns you down cold or whip-smart new hire who feels bored and disillusioned two months in.
Hiring tip: Keep your skill requirements and your interview process properly geared toward the position to make sure you get a generous pool of appropriately qualified candidates.
Employers can also miss out on awesome future employees by not moving applicants through the process in a timely manner and/or failing to keep them in the loop. Hiring should never be rushed, but taking too long to conduct interviews, check references, and make a decision will only hurt you in the long run.
You may be convinced your company is the gold standard and your position is amazing, but that doesn’t mean you have an infinite amount of time to snag that right person. Today’s job seekers are smart, savvy, and driven. And you can bet they’re not just talking to you. By the time you finally get around to calling your number one candidate back, they could already be putting their enthusiasm and talents to work for someone else.
Hiring tip: To avoid losing out on great candidates and new hires, institute a short, but effective process and keep people informed and updated as it moves along.
2.) Rigid time off requirements
A strict delineation between sick and vacation days probably seemed logical at some point, but in today’s working world, it just doesn’t make sense. Employees aren’t interested in being sick; they’re interested in being well. And that means achieving a healthy, manageable work/life balance.
According to the 2015 Workplace Flexibility Study, 75% of employees surveyed chose workplace flexibility as the most important benefit their employer could offer them. Meanwhile, research from Morneau Shepell found that 52% of incidental employee absence is not actually due to illness.
When your employees need to be out of the office, does it really matter what the exact reason is? Whether someone has intestinal distress, a barfing toddler, or playoff tickets is irrelevant. The point is, that person either needs to deal with a personal situation or they need to rest and recharge.
PTO Tip: Not being flexible when it comes to employee time off will only cause resentment and ultimately reduce employee engagement and productivity.
Don’t force your employees to call in “sick” from the Super Bowl. Scrap your vacation policy and come up with a paid time off system that allows for maximum flexibility and minimal deception. Even better, design it so that paid time off can be used in hourly increments instead of in all-or-nothing eight-hour chunks. That way, your employees will feel free to take only the time they need, when they need it, whatever they need it for.
PTO TIP: Switching your outdated sick policy to a PTO program is an inexpensive way to make current employees happy, recruit new talent and, according to Workforce, significantly reduce the number of unscheduled absences at your business.
Shake it up
Sticking with the same old same old may feel comfortable and safe, but comfortable and safe aren’t how you earn greater market share, more engaged employees, and happier customers.
Take a look at your business to see where you’re lagging behind, then come up with a plan to bring you to the forefront of your industry and make you a coveted employer of choice.
Need a better ROI on your corporate employee benefits? At Raffa, we’re not interested in finding you a policy solution for this year. We’ll create a long-term, employee benefit strategy designed to help you become an employer of choice. Want to build a better future for both your business and your employees? Get in touch with Raffa.
Photo by olegdudko