What You Need to Know to Make a More Human Workplace

Posted by Cathy Reilly

iStockTake a moment to think about your workforce. What do they look like? What are their names? What do they like to do on their weekends? Unless your employees are all robots, you should know the answers to these questions.

Yet it seems like organizations are forgetting that they have actual human beings who work for them. And it’s having dramatic implications for the workplace and employee satisfaction.

A survey by Globoforce found that of the employees whose leaders don’t care about making the workplace more human, just 43 percent love their job and only 32 percent are highly engaged. In comparison, of the employees whose leaders do care about the human side of the office, 89 percent love their job and 51 percent are highly engaged.

If you want to bring some more humanity to your workforce, try these three steps:

1. Add a personal touch during the hiring process

The hiring process is the entryway to your organization. But instead of giving candidates a friendly and personal greeting that welcomes them to the application process, you send them dry, automated emails. And that sends the wrong message to talent.

In fact, a 2015 CareerBuilder survey found that for 57 percent of talent, the reason the job seeking process is so difficult is because it lacks human contact. [click to tweet] If you want to start building employee satisfaction from the very beginning, you need to connect better with candidates.

Give the hiring process a more personal touch by sending candidates emails that acknowledge who they are. Use their name and reference skills listed on their resume so they know they’re not just communicating with a machine. Also, give them the contact information of someone who can help them if they have any concerns or questions during the process. This will not only make the candidate feel more comfortable, but also forge a stronger bond between them and the organization.

2. Stop focusing onboarding on paperwork

Starting a new job is an exciting time. There’s a lot to see and learn. Yet for many new hires, they spend the majority of their first few days locked away in a conference room filling out paperwork. They have to wait to meet anyone and are unable to begin to feel like a true part of the team.

Instead, allow new members of the team to fill out paperwork electronically and on their own time. That way they can focus on learning about all the new faces around them and their new position, rather than being cut off and buried by forms.

3. Go from evaluating employees to developing them

Even after an employee has been with a company for a while, they can still feel like just another cog in the wheel. For example, when it comes to their performance evaluations.

Many organizations rely on rating employees’ skills and performance as the sole means of feedback. But these are people, not a blender you’re buying on Amazon.

It’s important to have an open conversation that discusses employees’ strengths and weaknesses, while also providing guidance as to how they can improve. Doing that shows your workforce that you care about their professional development and want to see them continue to grow.

It’s important to remember that it’s people who make up your company, not faceless drones. You need to remind them that you care about who they are and want the best for them. And by creating a more human work environment, you’ll have higher employee satisfaction and a team that loves coming to work everyday.

What are some other ways you can bring more of a human touch to your workplace? Share in the comments below!

Topics: Onboarding, Recruiting & Hiring, Employee Engagement

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