The Need To Address Unhappy Workforces
A company is likely to suffer from reduced operational efficiencies, a loss of profits and high staff turnover rates if they have employees who are showcasing low morale and recording high absenteeism levels. The firm may also have to cover additional costs by providing more training and investing in recruitment processes as they attempt to solve the problems.
One of the top tourist attractions in Manchester, Chill Factore, provides entertaining and inclusive team-building activities. In this article, they underline why employers should be worried if they have an unhappy workforce and what they can do to improve the situation…
The impact of unhappy workforces on UK businesses
Employees will be less productive when they feel dejected in their jobs, studies have suggested. Considering that satisfied employees outperform companies with unhappy workers by 202%, it’s clearly beneficial for a company to take notice of the happiness of its staff.
Do you realise just how much a business’ profit margin can be affected by staff members who are unhappy? Personal Group, a staff services company, discovered that people who were happy with their job were 12% more productive than those who felt negatively about their role. Staff that aren’t satisfied will typically be less enthusiastic and involved — and this disengagement is reportedly costing the UK £85 billion a year in lost productivity, according to Gallup’s State of the Global Workforce report.
Members of staff who feel that their working hours are long or poorly organised can develop negative feelings. Their emotional wellbeing can be badly affected as well. This in turn affects workplace performance. A poll carried out by The Hoxby Collective found that 33% of workers said they’d suffered mental health problems directly because of rigid working hours. If your staff are unfit for work, this will cost you. According to estimations by The Centre of Economic and Business Research, absenteeism alone will cost the UK economy £21 billion by 2020, while overworking your staff can also lead to exhaustion and lack of sleep — another contributor of poor productivity levels that costs the UK economy £40.3 billion a year. Consequently, it’s key to create a positive working environment that staff want to get up in the morning and work in if companies want to keep paid sick days to a minimum.
Low staff morale is now being linked with employees showing signs of depression or anxiety too. According to research from the Centre for Mental Health, it costs employers £3.1 billion in staff turnover and £10.6 billion in sickness just to cover mental health problems of staff in the workplace. From implementing staff perks and bonuses to creating a happy, communicative atmosphere; all employers should be investing in lowering the risk of mental health issues for their staff.
When staff members are unhappy in their current role, employers should be prepared to see them looking for employment at another company. The Oxford Economics and Income Protection Providers Unum has calculated that the average amount of replacing a staff member sits at approximately £30,614 — taking into account hiring, lost time, training, and adapting new staff to the workplace culture. Can your business afford to keep covering or taking on new staff?
At this point, employers should be taking on board that they need to be stepping up their game to make sure that staff morale remains high throughout a company. Fortunately, there are many initiatives employers can enforce to boost employee happiness.
How to increase staff morale and keep it high
A survey by Investors in People conducted at the beginning of 2018 found that nearly half of the 2,000 participants said that they were aiming to leave their current job in the next 12 months because of poor management. Meanwhile, 39% stated that it was because of feeling undervalued and 30% claimed the reason was lack of job development opportunities. Are these factors that you can explore as part of a business strategy to improve staff morale?
It seems that management is definitely a key reason why many members of staff are making the decision to leave one company to seek out a new job at another firm. Considering the cost of replacing staff, this is something you’ll want to reduce. Assess how your supervisors and managers treat and interact with their staff — could they do with having stronger relationships to encourage better communication? If so, consider scheduling a series of corporate team-building activities to help boost collaboration across all of your departments, or organise onsite charity fundraisers, staff quizzes or regular nights out to inject a sociable aspect into the corporate environment.
Training and development can certainly boost staff morale as well. These can be provided either in-house or through external training courses. Sending your staff on these will not only make them feel valued — another factor of workplace happiness — but should also mean your company will benefit from more knowledgeable and confident business decisions, which should prove lucrative in the long run.
Make improvements to job quality and you should also see enhancements in the wellbeing of employees. This is according to a report created for Britain’s Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS). For instance, give your employees more authority over their working day — from how long it takes to complete a task properly, to how they schedule their day. This level of control and variety will help make workers feel more important and excited for the day ahead, while re-evaluating the time it takes to complete a task will lower the risk of them feeling rushed or stressed, thereby reducing the chance that they will take time off for anxiety-related issues.
Have sick days become a problem at your company too, to the point where they are proving costly to the business? If so, it may be worth trying to implement a strategy that focuses on improving the health of employees as well. The UK’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence claims that a well-researched and managed wellness plan can reduce sick days by almost a third — which means the expense of covering shifts and reduced productivity levels will go down accordingly, too.
Employees who are happier and feel more secure and valued at work should be quickly evident by applying the advice provided in this article throughout your business. Be sure to implement positive processes across your businesses and show initiative too.