Happiness at work is a big deal.
We live in an age that’s driven by the need to improve margins and increase profitability. As we fall into a cycle where we’re continually pushing for increased output, expectations of our employees are higher than ever.
In industries like retail, hospitality, logistics, and healthcare, burnout, high churn rates, and an unhappy workforce are all a reality.
But why do happy employees matter? Engaging Works stated in their research that the commercial advantages for companies with happy employees include profits and productivity that are 20% higher, lower staff turnover and absence, better customer service and satisfaction, and a range of health and wellbeing benefits. Not too bad, right?
During the last few years, a shift has occurred among the Millennials' and Gen Z's career priorities. Number one on the list is now to have a functional work-life balance. It’s from this shift the real benefits of ‘Happynomics’ stems. Employees with a far better work-life balance (which they get through flexible working) are happier, more engaged and generate more value for the business.
Meaning is stated to be the new money. Employees who feel like they have a meaning and significance in their workplace and are able to see how their contribution makes a difference, often value purpose over salary and are much more likely to stay with their organizations.
Here's a simple five-step recipe for improving performance within the deskless workforce…
Step One: Make flexible working a reality
Rarely do shift workers have control of their schedules. This can have a huge impact on their lives, making It hard for them to plan outside of work.
For part time workers, the deskless workforce, or people working in the gig economy, this also increases the challenge of working multiple jobs and calculating their income, as their hours can fluctuate wildly.
Not only do flexible schedules give you as an employer the ability to respond to unpredictable demand, they make your employees happier, lead to a more efficient business and, ultimately, ensure your customers receive a better service.
Step Two: Communicate with your staff
The importance of clear and concise communication can’t be stressed enough. Good communication is the driving force behind every successful business. After all, an employee who doesn’t know what’s expected of them is unlikely to perform to their full potential. Be clear, be positive, and show people how you want things done.
Allowing two-way communication is equally important. Providing an outlet for your employees’ concerns and frustrations will help them to trust you, and spend less time worrying when they could be getting the job done.
Step Three: Reward your employees
Providing the right level of pay and benefits is important, but it can be tricky to get the balance right. If overused, a reward quickly becomes an expectation and its effectiveness wears out. What your employees need is a combination of financial incentive and intrinsic motivation. By saying ‘thank you’ or ‘well done’, you can give your staff a sense of achievement, involvement and ownership.
Reward and recognition play a huge factor in keeping employees engaged. A study carried out in the UK found companionship and recognition are more important than high salaries in promoting employee loyalty and making employees feel valued. Happy employees stay longer and deliver better experiences!
Step Four: Promote Wellbeing at work
From practicing mindfulness to encouraging healthy eating and regular activity, promoting wellbeing at work is a sure-fire way to improve mental health in your workforce.
These are even better when they are group activities - either in person or virtually. Weekly workouts, team breakfasts, or half an hour of group yoga are all examples of the different activities that we at Quinyx loves and you could implement to improve happiness and wellbeing.
Step Five: Get the right resources
Technology is your friend! There are any number of tools out their (not just workforce management solutions) designed to make your life - and the lives of your employees - easier.
On the workforce management front, using technology to offer greater flexibility or help staff navigate unsocial hours can be easy-to-implement and cost-effective. Manual and elementary workforces can often be large and disparate, meaning that traditional methods of staff engagement – face-to-face team meetings, training sessions or socials – can be difficult to execute.
The good news is that our employer survey we undertook last year uncovered some smart uses of technology that can make up the miles when it comes to engaging and retaining these workers. Some options include using online training modules to help staff upskill from afar or using apps/online platforms to communicate faster and more effectively.
Your employees want to know when they are working, they want to be paid on time, they want to be able to swap shifts if they need to, and they want simple ways to communicate. Whether it’s a fully integrated workforce management solution or just an automated scheduling solution, there are tools out there to help empower your workers to be more productive and efficient.
Cloud-native and mobile-first workforce management solutions are part of the technology that can help – and our the same survey found nearly a third of workers believe technologies that allow business schedules to be viewed, shared and managed from an app could help their businesses increase flexibility - and, as a result, employee happiness.
Find out more about how a mobile-first workforce management solution can boost your workforce and business.