How to Improve Productivity in the Workplace
As businesses assess fiscal ROI and strategically plan for future growth, employee engagement should be your top priority. Striving to improve employee performance is where employers invariably focus their energy, but what about employee productivity? These concepts may be related, but they’re not the same thing. Smart employers work to achieve a golden combination – an engaged workforce that is also highly productive. Read further to determine how to improve productivity at the workplace.
How to Increase Employee Productivity
Business leaders who are committed to improving employee productivity don’t necessarily have to approve big raises, give lavish gifts or promise new incentives. However, there are more practical and effective ways to generate greater productivity from your workforce. It all starts with employee engagement. Disengaged employees are a drain on companies. Engaged employees show up more often, stay longer, and are more productive overall.
According to a recent Gallup poll, only about 34% of the U.S. workforce feels engaged. A related survey found that the costs are high to companies for ignoring poor employee productivity and an unhealthy company culture. Furthermore, individual companies are not the only ones to suffer. Actively disengaged employees cost the U.S. $483 to $605 billion each year in lost productivity.
How to Improve Productivity in an Organization
1. Encourage Learning Opportunities
Perhaps the #1 strategy for increasing employee productivity is providing opportunities to receive more education, according to the findings of a study by the National Center for Education Statistics. The study revealed a direct correlation between employers providing access to continuing education and an increase in employee productivity. On one end of the spectrum, this can include companies providing internal cross-training and employee development. Conversely, companies can offer tuition assistance for their employees to further their education by taking advantage of the expanding opportunities in online learning.
For example, a company employee holding a bachelor’s degree could decide to pursue a master’s online, such as Ottawa University’s Master of Business Administration offered in the university’s adult markets of Kansas City, Phoenix, and Milwaukee. The MBA curriculum provides real-world education and skills that in turn can help graduates impact an organization’s corporate strategy in a leadership or expert role. Furthermore, Ottawa’s business administration program features Leadership Development as one of eight concentrations that can be selected to enhance the degree and inspire graduates to take ownership and learn how to increase productivity in business.
2. Provide Employees with Technology
Employees who do not have the right tools for the job are found to be increasingly frustrated and decreasingly productive. The aforementioned Gallup poll showed that less than half of U.S. employees believe that their company provides them with the technology needed to effectively perform in their role. The challenge of companies being able to afford advanced technologies and equipment is becoming less of an issue with the rise of Cloud computing and mobile devices, which eliminates capital costs and provides ready access to information and data. Providing employees with the tools they need to succeed is a great first step in increasing employee productivity.
3. Emphasize Company Culture
A company’s culture is comprised of several key elements, including work environment, company vision, ethics, and goals. Studies show that employee productivity increases in work environments that emphasize relationship building and reward teamwork, whereas companies that focus on hierarchies and individual success derail productivity. If you are wondering how to improve productivity at the workplace, adjust your hiring practices and ensure that new hires will work well with others to energize and motivate your employees.
4. Strengthen Communication Protocols
Businesses that lack open communication between managers and employees are inviting productivity issues in the workplace. Managers should be accessible to their employees and effectively communicate expectations and responsibilities. This business management approach helps with increasing employee productivity, as employees feel directly connected to the organization’s mission and goals. Ultimately, implementing effective communication protocols can foster efficiency and increase job satisfaction.
5. Identify and Align Goals with Performance
Employees will be more productive if they are put in a position to aim for achievable goals. Goal setting helps employees self-motivate and build confidence in their ability to succeed. With identified goals in place, employees can then be compelled to follow an established system of performance analysis and take ownership in it. Setting meaningful goals for your business and employees can drive better performance and higher productivity. It can also encourage employees to collaborate and work as a team. Company leaders should regularly check in with their employees about their goals and personal progress, and in turn offer rewards for a job well done.
How to Improve Efficiency of Employees
If your focus is finding ways to inspire employees to take ownership in the company’s overall success by increasing their productivity, then encourage them to further their education with a degree like Ottawa University’s online Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Leadership Development. This will help them enhance and cultivate their skills in order to thrive in jobs. Ottawa University and its online programs rank near the top of the U.S. News & World Report’s best colleges in the institution’s adult markets of Kansas City, Phoenix, and Milwaukee.
How to Increase Productivity in a Business
Learning how to increase the productivity in a business starts with the support of a strong leader. Why not take the first step toward furthering your education in business management with Ottawa University's online Master of Business Administration degree program? Learn more about earning your online MBA !
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