Positively Influencing Employee Well-Being

Two Coworkers Walking Down Spiral Stairs

Employee well-being is taking over employer focus from employee wellness. Well-being-focused initiatives are those programs that address issues such as financial education, career fulfillment, and the employee’s emotional and mental health.

 

As an employee’s mental health can change at any time, it is important to be conscious of contributing factors such as workload, stress, and the employee’s work-life balance.

 

If you haven’t done so already, consider establishing a workplace environment that caters to employee mental health support. This can be done by promoting an employee assistance program (if you have one), allow employees to reach out for help or guidance from their HR team or managers through a specific portal or digital method, or encourage the start of an employee support group that meets on a regular basis.

 

Managers can attempt to address specific employee concerns by paying close attention to the workload spread across their team, facilitate positive, and constructive conversations in a one-on-one environment between the manager and each employee, or even highlight an employees success to shine a light on their contributions to morale or bettering the team.

 

Additional well-being initiatives your organization could adopt include:

  • Two-Mile Dine. Compile a list of local eateries with healthier options within two miles of your office. Post publicly or share with employees to inspire team-lunches within walking distance.

 

  • Take the Stairs. If you work in building with multiple levels, urge employees to take the stairs if traveling between one to three floors. Confirm employees know where the stairs are in your building and reinforce stair safety and precautions. Communicate the initiative with employees by sharing the benefits of taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

 

  • Practice Gratitude. It has become commonplace to close an email with “thank you” or say the words as a reflex in response to the end of a conversation. Being thankful and meaning it can help foster a positive environment and work culture. Be sincere, be specific, and be humble. Practice gratitude in all encounters by showing respect to those around you, showing you trust your coworkers and leaders, and developing confidence in your team by expressing how they have helped you grow in your role or as a leader.

 

  • Shutdown the “Always On” Mentality. Even though it’s not explicitly written out, business leaders and employees who have access to laptops or mobile devices that are tapped into their work emails are many times afflicted with an “always on “mentality. The expectation is that emails should be answered when received, regardless of what time it is. Employers should attempt to squash the “always on” precedent many employees feel is necessary to prove dedication to the role and organization. Support your employees’ work/life balance by restricting evening and weekend email, when possible, to show employees you value their home time as much as they do.

 

Employers should place an immense amount of importance on supporting their employees’ mental health through improving current benefit offerings or learning about and adding new resources for employees. Contact Vensure to learn more about flexible solutions to help you reach your goals and business objectives.

 

 

 

Pros and Cons of Telecommuting

Professional Telecommuting From Home In Casual Attire

Innovations in modern technology have allowed quality candidates to join organizations remotely, from any corner of the globe, and still feel connected to the business, their colleagues, and the company mission, vision, and values. In a rather quick amount of time, telecommuting and working remotely became the future of corporate America. But not all companies are on board.

 

Employers who found immediate benefits of telecommuting were those who experienced cost savings on parking and office space, relocation costs, and were able to retain their top talent who may have otherwise had to sever their employment due to other obligations or the need to work from a different location.

 

Telecommuting is shown to improve employee productivity, as it is “estimated that employers in the US lose $1.8 trillion a year in productivity” costs. Employees who work from home are subject to far fewer distractions that are commonplace in a traditional office. These employees are able to better structure their days for optimal productivity, all while promoting a healthy work/life balance.

 

Conversely, employers who are anti-remote work policies stand by their decision to opt-out of adding telecommuting policies. For example, employees who work from home have less one-on-one time with coworkers and managers, which can affect the employee’s ability to form a valuable synergy with the rest of the team and direct management.

 

Remote employees may require additional effort to ensure they feel like part of the team, including important projects or company-focused communications, and are not overlooked just because they are not physically in the office.

 

If your organization is looking to implement a telecommuting policy here are some items to consider.

 

Eligibility

Not all employees may be eligible for the telecommuting benefit. Candidates for telecommuting should not have a history of attendance issues or disciplinary action and should be considered dependable and have a comprehensive understanding of their role.

 

Job Duties

The employees eligible for or requesting a telecommuting position should be a top performer in their current role and in a solo capacity. It is also important that they are able to perform all aspects of their role from their remote location, as it is assumed the position requirements and responsibilities would not change.

 

Technology

Employees may be required to supplement some or all of the equipment needed in order to work remotely. If the organization is providing the equipment, it may become necessary to have the employee sign an acknowledgment verifying the equipment is the property of the organization and is only to be used to perform their required duties. In the event the employee leaves the organization, for any reason, all of the equipment should be returned in similar or better condition.

 

Telecommuting may not be the right addition for every company at this stage, however, it should be a regularly discussed topic. This trend is only becoming more popular, and there is no sign of slowing down when it comes to either hiring remote employees or having the company’s top performers request to move to a more flexible or remote location.

 

Regardless of whether your employees are in the office or working remotely, Vensure has the ability to implement industry-specific solutions to manage time and attendance. From robust scheduling and complex calculations to reporting and telepunch, we have the solution to fit your business needs. Contact Vensure to learn more about drag and drop scheduling, benefit accruals, or PTO and leave of absence request tracking.

 

 

 

Forbes: Benefits of Telecommuting for the Future of Work

 

 

Digital Time and Attendance

Digital time and attendance tracking are rapidly becoming a rapid need for businesses who are regularly clocking hours or asking employees to clock in and out. As your company continues to grow, managers will need the ability to submit expense reports on-the-go, enter expense details, or upload receipt images directly from a smart device.

 

Modern companies require a partner familiar with the industry and capable of providing the tools you need to operate more efficiently. As the nation’s fastest-growing partner in payroll, human resources, benefits, risk management, and workers’ compensation, Vensure is equipped to handle all of your HR services and back-office administration needs. Let us design a flexible and economical solution to meet your time and attendance needs. Learn more about Vensure today.

New Technology-Based Trends in Employee Benefits

Medical Information Available Online

Companies are always looking for ways to lower costs while improving employee happiness and health at the same time. This becomes increasingly difficult as new technologies are introduced and the number of millennials in the workforce continues to increase. Both of these elements have a direct impact on the ways employers aim to communicate with and educate employees when it comes to employer-sponsored benefits. The influx of millennials will push employers to stay competitive in role-specific technologies, which may only be available at premium prices.

 

On-the-Go Connections

Employees are looking for more direct and rapid communication when it comes to their benefits. For example, younger employees, those that fall into the millennial bucket, primarily prefer a text message or email notifications for benefit changes or enrollment information. Some health care providers now offer the option of receiving a text or email updates or appointment reminders.

 

Flexible Hours or Work from Home Option

More people consider a flexible work schedule or work from home option more valuable than other employer-sponsored benefits, healthcare aside. Technology has allowed this benefit to become a reality for businesses of any size, simply by implementing a cloud-based server structure or VPN. Employees, also, are more productive in addition to hosting and attending effective meetings while being an active, focused participant,

 

Telehealth

People are more likely to book appointments online than calling a phone number, simply out of convenience. Telehealth allows employees to access healthcare services easily, including receiving care from medical specialists, digital communication with doctors and nurses, or having prescriptions refilled. Telehealth also alleviates stress for employees who typically need to take time off work to attend doctor visits. Employees who are able to access medical care remotely are more productive at work as the speed at which they are able to receive medical attention is increased through telehealth.

 

Learning and Development

“Technology is driving a new mandate for training.” As artificial intelligence (AI) and other revolutionary technologies continue to seep into our professional lives, employers will work to train their existing workforce to help them better adapt to new technologies that will only make our jobs easier. Job-focused or role-based online training sessions will prepare employees for the new applications and tools they will be required to use.

 

Wellness

From Apple Watches to the Fitbit, wearable health and wellness technology has infiltrated the lives of your employees. Wellness programs are offered in addition to many general health plans. For most, as a policyholder, you simply need to complete an online profile. The system is often loaded with healthy behavior recommendations, weekly tips and tricks, and healthy recipes.

 

 

As the job market continues to stay competitive, the benefits your organization offers may make or break a prospective offer for a quality new hire candidate. Technology-based benefits, in addition to supplementary benefits, are on the rise. Before your organization starts taking a hard look at your benefit offerings, consider recent feedback regarding what is or is not working, on trend, or considered competitive in the market. Let Vensure customize an appropriate benefits package for your employees, your industry, and your business. You want to stay competitive and we can show you how.

 

 

 

MAQTOOB: It’s Time for Companies to Embrace Remote Work

MetLife: Thriving in a New Work-Life World

 

 

Effective Goal Setting for Managers and Supervisors

Casual Meeting As Coworker Displays Data On A Large Monitor

Managers should be interested in understanding their co-managers style, reasoning, and processes to become more effective leaders. Employees look to the management chain to not only see how they should act and react but as a goal for their own professional development within your organization.

 

This means managers and supervisors are never exempt from professional development conversations focused on advancing their careers, improving their communication, and reviewing their goals.

 

Some organizations choose to use the SMART method for setting individual goals aimed to hone in on performance and development goals for each employee, including managers and supervisors. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Based goals.

 

Regardless of how your organization comes by their manager and supervisor goals, it is most important that your leaders are driven by goals that highlight their competencies, attitudes and behaviors, employee management skills, and areas for opportunity.

 

  • Improved Communication: Most companies receive complaints about the lack of communication. If there is an announcement that is going to be released that directly affects your manager’s team, the managers should be made aware and prepared to answer questions accurately and effectively. This goal should be used to show an enhanced investment in consistent, clear, and concise communication in face-to-face interactions or written messages.

 

  • Employee Coaching and Core Management: Does your manager lead by motivation, positive reinforcement, or fear? This goal should be used to identify opportunities for managers and supervisors to provide constructive, valuable, and timely feedback to employees on a regular basis, or on-the-spot.

 

  • Productivity: Goals in this area should highlight the manager’s ability to successfully close projects within a set time and budget. Hard numbers drive this goal and can be checked regularly.

 

  • Training: Successful managers and supervisors should never shy away from management training. If made available through your organization or in your local area, manager/supervisor training is an effective way to help the team improve as a whole. Managers should attempt to attend at least one professional improvement training session (e.g. leadership, management, review process, coaching, etc.) each year, using this goal to track the gained skills and knowledge from the course.

 

 

Professional manager development does vary slightly from that of non-manager level employees. Goals like those outlined here help to secure a manager’s confidence and core management skills that make the most sense for the success of the organization. Each manager may require separate goals as their strengths and areas of opportunity will likely differ. Effective goal setting is a useful way to train and motivate managers or supervisors and get a good feel for the company’s trajectory toward achieving corporate goals. Contact Vensure for support in helping your managers become superior leaders.

 

 

Building a Stronger Team with Self-Evaluations

Smiling Chef & Executive Meeting Over Lunch

Employee self-appraisals, or self-evaluations, have undergone scrutiny on whether they are beneficial, help employees achieve goals, or provide an accurate picture of the employee’s performance from their own perspective. While some employees may express they find self-evaluations to be tedious, the real benefit of employee evaluations is in the strength of the team.

 

High-performing teams are found to be more effective and productive as they are able to better communicate and coordinate their efforts in order to meet deadlines and attack projects head-on. Self-appraisals benefit the entire team by allowing employees to identify and refine their strengths, and focus on improving areas of opportunity.

 

Adding an employee evaluation section to your regularly scheduled annual performance reviews will require setting a good foundation, creating a self-evaluation process, determining next steps to keep the employee’s professional growth on a positive trajectory, and monitoring progress.

 

Here are our tips for creating or adding employee self-evaluations to your existing performance review process.

 

Provide accurate, current job descriptions. Employees should always know what their current role is and be able to communicate their job duties and responsibilities. This information will allow the employee to understand exactly which areas they should be focusing on in their self-appraisal. The employee and manager should be in agreement of the employee’s duties to ensure the employee is evaluating the proper scope of their position.

 

Create a formal employee self-evaluation. An employee’s performance development should include a self-evaluation. The results of these evaluations should be used to contribute to the employee’s professional development planning and as a motivational tool. Managers should be able to glean information from the evaluation to help prepare the employee for their next professional move or better understand the areas the employee requires assistance to achieve their goals.

 

Include evaluation questions that require the employee to explore their current role, new goals or challenges, achievements, and how the company can assist in their professional development.

 

Closely monitor the new or integrated evaluation process. Whether your organization currently employs self-evaluations, or you are considering integrating them into your existing employee performance reviews, it will be important to monitor the progress and program success. Managers will want to keep a pulse on the process to confirm cross-departmental consistency and suggest or provide additional training, as necessary, to further ensure managers are prepared to execute the process effectively.

 

Follow-up. Schedule regular check-ins with employees to provide feedback throughout the year, rather than once or twice. Employees will see consistent performance-focused feedback as their manager investing in their career. These employees are 94% more likely to stay with your organization.

 

 

Evaluating an employee’s performance, even reviewing an employee’s self-appraisal, can be an uncomfortable task for managers. Regular performance reviews that incorporate an employee’s self-evaluation should look more like a performance snapshot throughout the year. These evaluations open doors for communication and opportunities for the employee and manager to provide feedback to one another, keeping the entire team engaged and productive. Contact Vensure to learn more about incorporating self-evaluations into your existing processes and procedures.

 

 

LinkedIn: 2018 Workplace Learning Report