Are you struggling to find and retain good people … or even breathing people? Well, strap your working boots on because the answer lies, in many cases, in restructuring your Operations. Here’s how.
EVALUATE YOUR RESOURCES
Take the State of Union
Begin with identifying how many staff members that you have now and how many you need. What are the strengths, and the weaknesses of your staff and your operations systems? Are there any reoccurring problems that you would like to solve? Consider whether you have the right people in the right jobs, or could you use some moving around. Write down some concrete goals of what results that you hope to achieve, and in what time frame.
Calculate the Cost of Your Turnover
How much does it cost you to lose an employee? Add up recruiting, training, supplies, down-time and new employee mistakes and you may be surprised that it costs hundreds, if not thousands per employee.
Determine your Budget
How much can you invest in re-structuring your Operations? Be sure to consider the gain that your company will receive by decreasing its turnover costs.
STRENGTHEN YOUR BASE
Create Job Descriptions
Job descriptions tend to fall lowest on the priority list for many, but are actually essential in hiring and retaining quality employees. Your job descriptions should include the skills needs, tasks performed and knowledge required, as well as expected competency and attitudes. Set standards that can be measured and rewarded.
Review and Update Staff Training and Materials
Consider both initial training and a continued learning plan. Effective programs improve your staff’s performances, skill level and motivation. The training program does not need to be expensive, but should train staff members via as many forms of communication as possible (i.e. written, verbal, visual, demonstrative, physical)
Provide Top-Notch Resources
Technology and office supplies are relatively cheap, and a worthy investment for your quality people. Crashing computers, inadequate supplies, back-aching chairs, and awkward software not only inhibit performance, but also equate to a “you are not valued” message to your staff.
Feedback, Feedback, Feedback
People want and need to know how they are doing. I recommend both frequent evaluations, and informal feedback. The primary goals of the feedback are recognition of accomplishments and motivation.
Beef Up your Compensation and Incentive Programs
Does your Compensation package reward all aspects of your employees? Do your sales people close a lot of sales, but drop the ball on follow-up customer service? Salary isn’t everything. Try using your job descriptions to identify job tasks that are not being rewarded, and implement a creative incentive program. “1001 Ways to Reward Employees” by Bob Nelson has some excellent suggestions.
Remember Internal Marketing
In today’s employment market it is often more difficult to find good employees than it is to find good customers. So, implement an internal marketing plan that highlights your employment attributes, and reinforces your mission.
Plan for Turnover
You may be able to decrease your turnover rate, but you cannot eliminate it… So plan for it. Why risk stressing your staff with over-work, for something that can be planned for.
Perform Exit Interviews
Valuable information can be gained by interviewing employees that are leaving your organization. If you find out what your employees really want, then you can give it to them. It is not always money, like you might think. Be a Great Boss Take seminars, read books, hire consultants or whatever it takes to learn how to get the best performance out of your staff.
HIRE THE BEST Create a Recruiting Plan
Now that you have the best jobs in town, you just need to tap into the right people. Create and implement a plan to find the employees that you need that includes everything from digital recruiting, to word of mouth, to recruiting events and contests. Be objective, and look for the best use your job descriptions to make a list of what you are looking for, and don’t settle for less. Quality people are out there, and are looking for a place of employment that rewards and appreciates them.
THERE YOU HAVE IT!
There you have it. Building an extraordinary staff is a lot of work, but the rewards are great, long lasting and filter right down to the quality of your product or service.