If your employees punch in at 9 and count every single second till 5 – you’ve failed the mammoth task of keeping your employees satisfied. Employee satisfaction is an intangible yet most powerful force that facilitates successful and productive workplaces. Especially in the post-covid era the key objective of every HR and employer is to improve employee satisfaction.
If you want to build a loyal customer base you need to kick off the task by providing employee satisfaction first, as great products and affordable pricing will only take your company so far. You need brand evangelists: employees who care and promote your brand as much as the CEO or other stakeholders.
Satisfaction, however, is not linked solely to monetary compensation. Sure, a raise will amplify employee contentment, but small, inexpensive changes like collecting employee feedback, ensuring transparency, increasing accessibility, etc. can leave a long-term impact.
Read on to know more how to improve employee satisfaction levels in the workplace, and before that what it actually means.
What is Employee Satisfaction & Why is It So Important?
Employee satisfaction is the level of contentment an employee feels towards his/her job. It could also be described as the degree to which an employer meets the needs and desires of his workforce. Satisfied employees radiate strong morale and work culture within the organization.
According to Harvard Business Review, 71% of business executives consider employee engagement as a crucial element of organizational success. And employee satisfaction is the precondition for exemplary employee engagement. Additionally, this satisfaction is important for:
1. Higher Productivity
Irrespective of their job title/salary, employees show higher productivity levels, when they’re satisfied with the organizational culture. This translates to their efforts being valued and the feeling of putting in more hard work for the organization.
2. Customer Loyalty
The infectious nature of satisfaction extends beyond the company walls. When the employees are happy and satisfied, they transfer that to their customers. Moreover, organizations with higher employee satisfaction rates, enjoy 2x more customer loyalty which translates into higher profit and customer retention ratio.
3. Improved Retention
According to a study, 81% of employees consider leaving their present jobs for the right offer, even if they aren’t looking for one. This shows that employees cite job satisfaction and healthy relationships as the main reason for sticking to their current job. The reason for decreased retention rate is not about job security or money anymore, it is about contentment!
4. Increased Profits
A boost in morale often results in a boost in productivity levels of the employees. According to a report by Oxford University, happy employees work 13% more productively and bring more sales as compared to their distressed counterparts. Therefore, creating a satisfying environment can lead to bigger gains in terms of increased revenue and profits.
10 Ways to Improve Employee Satisfaction
Building employee satisfaction norms isn’t about free lunches or playing ping pong tables. It is more than that. Here are ten ways to improve employee satisfaction within your organization:
1. Offer a Competitive Salary
Offering a competitive salary is a gate pass for retaining top talents. No matter how attractive the job description is, if it doesn't align with the monetary compensation – the deal cannot be sealed. And that’s how it should be!
If your organization is expecting quality work, the employee should be compensated accordingly. They should be offered a salary that is in line with the industry standards for their role. Don’t give them a reason to bid adieu to the role because of financial inefficacies.
2. Take Feedback and Suggestions from Employees
Great leaders inculcate the power of listening to their employees. Empowering employees to share their feedback and suggestions inspires problem-solving, and the availability of better solutions. As per Forbes research, employees whose input is appreciated are more productive than those who feel underappreciated.
Acknowledge their input by conducting surveys, review meetings, etc. However, surveys can turn out to be downturn due to the excessive influx of data. Large data sets make analysis tedious and erroneous. To avert this, use survey software like Zonka, to get powerful survey insights and detailed reports.
3. Get Innovative with Employee Benefits
Employees revere benefits. They always long for monetary or non-monetary compensation for their hard work. Moreover, some employees stay in an organization depending upon the level of perks offered by that company.
Equip them with the right kind of benefits to improve employee satisfaction, and retain them for a longer period. Other than just a paid vacation, you could organize a whole business trip for as a reward for your best employees. In that case it is always a good idea to look into travel agencies for businesses so you could be better organized and save up some money in the process.
A creative employee benefits system will result in increased loyalty, productivity, retention rate, and reduced absenteeism. Some creative employee benefits are:
- Childcare facilities
- Wellness programs
- Pet-friendly offices
- Monthly recreational activities
- Corporate discounts
- Paid vacation
Equip them with the right kind of benefits to improve employee satisfaction, and retain them for a longer period.
4. Empower Employees with the Right Tools
To save employees' valuable energy over tedious manual tasks (that can be automated), technology is at your rescue. Prioritize implementing the right technology from employee onboarding(especially if you are working remotely) aimed at bettering employees’ time at work. By investing in the right employee management and engagement tool, employees can automate repetitive tasks and focus on creative activities.
Many organizations have now started adopting digital tools to manage tasks, streamline communication, and automate workflows. These tools help employees work more productively and contribute to improving overall employee satisfaction.
5. Improve Internal Communication
If your internal stakeholders (employees) face discrepancies with their co-workers – you’re cooking a disastrous meal. There will always be some sort of confusion due to inefficient communication and the result will be a huge mess!
Build a vigorous communication system and keep all your employees in a constant loop to avoid dissatisfaction. Share constant updates about current projects or company strategies to make the employee feel involved and empowered. It will ensure a seamless workflow within the company.
6. Celebrate Achievements
Shining a spotlight on the professional achievement of your employee helps foster feelings of accomplishment and pride within the organization. According to a survey, 37% of employees feel encouraged after receiving personal recognition. Celebrating achievement makes them strive harder in the workplace. Presenting custom awards and trophies will be a great way to show appreciation and motivate your team to work more efficiently.
Organizations often forget this psychological aspect. It is, therefore, advised to celebrate achievements within the organization as it boosts morale, productivity levels, and overall employee satisfaction.
7. Focus on Employee Well-Being
‘Health is wealth’ is by far the most cliche phrase but it holds true to its meaning. Organizations that do not emphasize employees’ physical, mental, emotional, psychological, and financial well-being build an inefficient workforce.
If you find any of your employees showing signs of excessive workload, or burnout – just consult them and try to find the reason behind it. Continually working for more than 8 hours a day causes severe back problems. According to Eachnight, one in three adults suffer from back pain on a daily basis. Make sure your employees get enough rest and sleep well. Choosing the right mattress can make all the difference between a good night's sleep and a sleepless one. You can offer various benefits to increase employee well-being like:
- Paid leaves and education sponsorship
- Sick leaves and health insurance
- Income protection plans and pension plans
- Mental health counseling, meditation, and yoga sessions
8. Provide Learning & Growth Opportunities
Most people are always up for becoming better at what they do for a living. Capitalizing on this willingness is a win-win for both parties. Qualified employees are more valuable and play a prominent role in departmental decision-making.
Companies should identify learning and growth opportunities for each employee to reflect on what they do well and what they could improve. These opportunities can be in the form of assigning them a mentor, attending industry workshops or webinars, or a professional program. You can also assign your employees an online coach who can guide them and give useful tips for growth. Learning and growth opportunities will reduce the skill gaps in your business and combat any hurdles your business is facing.
9. Offer Flexible Working Hours
Flexible working hours endow employees with greater scope to reconcile their private, professional, and family lives. According to a study, 70% of employees believe that flexible working makes a job more attractive to them. However, flexible working hours don’t mean dodging deadlines and leaving early. Instead, it allows an employee to decide his working hours, and manage his schedule effectively for maintaining a work-life balance.
Employees are likely to come more satisfied as they have control over their work hours. This holds true for millennials who place greater importance on flexibility. Furthermore, due to the job satisfaction provided by flexible working hours, employees are more likely to stick around during hard times. Allow them to have some short and long breaks between working hours in which they can refresh their mind. They can go out, play games like Scrabble, play PC games or anything they want.
10. Stop Micromanagement
While top-down management can be effective, micromanagement is demonstrably not and can poison employee productivity levels by impeding creativity and stress.
Give your employees room to learn, achieve, and grow on their own. They don’t want a manager nagging at their head incessantly for minor tasks. To improve employee satisfaction, identify those managers through an anonymous employee survey, retrain them, and undertake collaborative approaches.
Employees are the driving force behind an organization. Without high-performing employees, your company can’t produce good work and make revenue. So, it is suitable to devise strategies that motivate employees to put their best foot forward relentlessly. Set up meetings, give feedback, and build a robust employee satisfaction protocol. That’s when you build a workforce that achieves soaring milestones one after the other.