The holidays are rolling around and it is indeed the most wonderful time of the year. Of course, we’re talking about spending quality time with family, indulging in holiday delicacies and enjoying time off from work to relax… but we’re also talking about preparing and conducting end-of-the-year employee performance reviews.
Many employers conduct yearly employee appraisals during December to be equipped to have the proper resources that will enable them to hit the ground running as soon as the new year begins. According to a research study by Cornerstone, only 13% of employers do not give performance reviews at some point each year. There are many benefits to conducting these reviews for ALL parts of a company, including both management and employees.
Here are some of the ways that employee performance reviews set up a company for success:
Performance reviews fuel the biggest benefits for employees, even though most team members usually don’t anticipate them. If done the right way, employers are able to help employees understand their contribution to the company as well as their goals and their progress, so they feel like their work and position is more valued. This helps to create a better sense of loyalty to the company, which increases workplace productivity and satisfaction.
Managers reap many benefits from performance reviews because these assist them in defining and clarifying goals that they want their employees to meet to set the criteria to achieve them. They also help management determine where improvement is needed so they can help their employees reach top performance levels and the various ways they can do so.
Appraisals have a positive impact on a company because they are cost-effective and drive improvement. Since these allow managers to communicate how each employee contributes to company success, employee morale is increased. Hiring managers are able to clarify employee daily responsibilities and workload to improve salary accuracy. This improves company retention rates that save money on unemployment claims and new employee training.
Plan Your Performance Reviews Now!
Since the end of the year is approaching, December is a great time to conduct employee performance reviews because companies must put together their staffing strategy to set themselves up for success in the new year. If you're not sure how to measure employee behavior that can contribute to a productive performance review, download our free checklist "20 Red Flags of Employee Behavior" by clicking the button below:
If after performance reviews you decide that it’s time to top-grade your staff or add fresh talent, The Daniel Group can provide you with ambitious professionals that will drive your company to success. Click here to contact any of our offices today!
Since September is in full-swing and everyone has gone “Back to School” for a fresh start with new learning opportunities, you should consider taking your company “Back to School” as well. There are many benefits that can improve employee production, motivation and satisfaction. It also helps to assist with meeting company goals and better determine company strengths and weaknesses to identify areas of improvement.
The year is more than halfway over, but it is still possible to jump-start a new outlook for your company before the start of next year! By taking the following steps, you can take your staff “Back to School” this September:
- Bring coaching sessions into the workplace: Even if you are the most inspirational leader in the workplace and always make it a point to coach your employees to do their best, sometimes it’s good to bring in an outside coach for improvement. They can help train your team to be better team players and learn different ways to work more efficiently. These professionals are trained to help motivate your staff, assist with changes that need to be made and solve internal issues between employees.
- Keep everyone on the right track by evaluating employee roles: Employees are given set job descriptions and duties when they are first hired and these roles usually evolve over time. Because of this, employees can easily lose sight of their daily goals, so try to periodically set your expectations and voice them. This will keep everyone moving in the right direction and will also help you determine project reassignments or possible shifts in responsibility.
- Strengthen your employees’ skill sets: Try to periodically meet with employees to discuss and analyze the progress they have made since they’ve joined your company. Determine their strengths and weaknesses and suggest that they attend workshops or training sessions for improvement. This will not only strengthen their knowledge and professional skills but will allow them to develop more self-worth in the workplace because they will feel that they are being invested in.
- Put your staffing needs into check: Do you think your employees may have hit their tipping point? If a lot of business has come in during the past year or there may be a need to top-grade your staff, it may be a good time to determine if your employees are experiencing work overload or are just not performing up-to-par. Any of these issues can be resolved by hiring a staffing firm that can provide options that will help build your team or help your staff more efficiently and quickly complete projects.
- Compare previously-set company goals for the year vs. progress that has actually been made: Even though there are only 3 months left of the year, it’s not too late to meet company goals that were set for 2013! Think back to the beginning of the year and compare actual company progress that has been made versus initial expectations to determine if your company has been successful thus far. This will help you determine if a new strategy needs to be put into place or if you must reposition company roles.
If you decide to take your company “Back to School” this fall and decide that it’s time to add new talent to your staff, The Daniel Group can provide you with staffing solutions for success. Click the button below to receive more information about our staffing options (contract, contract-to-direct, direct hire and executive search) and a representative will get back to you shortly!
Independence Day has just passed, summer is in full-swing and managers may be concerned that the year is half-way through and key project goals have not yet been met. Employees may not be completely focused on work because lazy summer days and vacation time may be on their minds. They are ready to relax and enjoy their well-deserved vacation time. The United States is the only country that actually does not legally require a company to offer vacation time to workers, but many still do for various reasons. There are many reasons why a company providing vacation time can result in higher production levels from their staff.
What are some of the benefits that companies experience when including vacation time as a mandatory part of their benefits package? Read these four reasons how companies boost productivity by encouraging employee vacations:
- Rested employees are more productive on the job — Taking a vacation has a heavy impact on one’s mental health. It increases employee motivation significantly. Francine Lederer explains that after taking a vacation, most people have a more positive perspective on life, feel more refreshed and dedicate more time to achieving their career goals.
- Employee vacation time reduces company turn-over rates — Employees who receive vacation time as a part of a benefits package are more likely to stay at their jobs. A Families and Work Institute study found that, "workplaces with greater flexibility are more likely to have employees who are more engaged, more satisfied with their jobs, more likely to plan to remain on the job and are in overall better health."
- Rested employees are in overall better health — As a result of having more time to rest, employees are less inclined to take sick days and their health insurance rates fall much lower. Natasha Withers from One Medical Group says, "Rest, stress reduction and relaxation are very important for people's well-being and health. This can be accomplished through daily activities, such as meditation and exercise, but vacation is an important part of this process as well.” Withers also explains how providing employee vacation time also promotes a decreased risk of heart disease and improved reaction times as additional benefits of having time off.
- Employees are happier with their jobs when having ample vacation time — The happier the employee, the more productive and successful a company is. A happy employee that is offered adequate time for rest is also more likely to refer their friends for employment, making it easier to recruit for key positions. People are more likely to work for a company if it is known as being a desirable place to work. According to FWI’s 2008 National Study of the Changing Workforce, 87% of all employees think that flexibility is “extremely important” or “very important” to them if they were searching for a new job. Creating a culture that encourages employees to rest and providing ample vacation time can go far in increasing company loyalty.
It may be a challenge to keep productivity levels stable during vacation season, but there are many ways that employers can boost productivity within their staff by offering this vacation time. Many companies hire Texas temporary agencies for extra support during these vacation months. If you think that it would be a good time to bring in additional help to aid with project completion this summer, read more about The Daniel Group’s hiring options. We will take the time to understand your company culture to provide temporary workers that can bring additional skills to your workplace and boost daily work levels. For more information, contact us here or call (713) 932-9313 today!
When it comes to increasing competitiveness, companies have to take a realistic look at what is needed to move forward. As productivity improvements are made, it’s clear that everyone on the team needs to be an “A player.” Having an employee that is adequate at their job isn’t good enough – your company really needs all staff members to exceed expectations and bring you to the next level.
Human capital is the value of an employee to an employer. According to a recent survey of CEOs, human capital is the highest employer concern for this year. If you are a hiring manager, hiring the right people to meet the goals of your company is the most important job you have.
Analyze what you need to accomplish and assess how much talent you need to hire. Hiring the right talent and finding a workplace culture fit are the best ways to achieve great results.
Here are the characteristics that every member of your team should have
- Integrity: Integrity at the core of every personal and business decision a person makes. Hiring people with integrity is what allows you to sleep at night.
- Flexibility: Flexibility governs an employee’s response to the many hurdles that arise in everyday business. If your employee is flexible, your employee will be a true team member.
- Communication Skills: Reading, writing, speaking and most of all, listening – these are the skills that we use every day in everything we do. Excellence in communication is a must for an employee.
- Customer Service Skills: It takes five times more resources to attain a customer than to keep one. An employee with customer service skills will help you maintain and gain customers.
- Intelligence: A fast learner can adapt to constant change and learn new technologies or concepts as they come along. Intelligent employees will keep your company competitive.
- Attitude: Employees that have a good attitude are pleasant to be around and will make you enjoy coming to work every day.
- Desire to work: This may seem obvious, but don’t assume everyone is a worker. Many employees have all the right skills but just don’t want to apply themselves.
Additionally, assess your current staff. Your “A” players will possess these skills. They are the top 10% of your staff for that reason -- let them do their thing. If you have employees that are lacking any of these skills, it is probably time to make a change. These employees are likely to be your low performers, and trying to change them will be counterproductive. Don’t focus on what percent of your team the “C” group is. Whether “C” players comprise 10% or 80% of your staff, you need to put a plan in place to find more “A” players. The process of replacing “C” performers is called topgrading. For more tips on identifying weak links in your team, contact The Daniel Group today.
This year, businesses have to do more than just address customer demand. Companies need to simultaneously finish their daily tasks and complete projects that support growth. This is why increasing productivity should be a top focus for organizations.
Although critical, increasing productivity can be challenging… mainly because employers run the risk of working their staff too hard. Employee burnout can actually lead to less productivity, and even turnover in some cases.
Keeping your staff happy and healthy is the key to increasing productivity. Here are three workforce initiatives to keep in mind as you look to ramp-up production:
Obtain more employee buy-in
As an employer, it would be impractical to allow your employees to have input in every one of your decisions. However, whenever you implement an initiative that will change or improve operations, it’s crucial that you have buy-in from your staff – and right from the start. Instead of just informing your employees that “x,y or z will change,” take the time to explain why the change is being made and how it will benefit them in the long-run. Also give them set periods of time where they can provide feedback openly and honestly. This will make them more enthusiastic about the planned changes and increases the likelihood that your changes will be sustainable.
Encourage employee vacations
A recent survey from Harris Interactive found that nearly 60% of workers don’t utilize all of their vacation time, with multiple studies supporting this notion. When staff members don’t take the time to relax and recharge, it’s harder for them to stay energetic and positive. Remind your employees that it’s important for them to take their allotted days or time. They’ll return to work better than new.
Leverage contract workers
Bringing in some additional help is critical to growth. Contract workers can help get some projects off the desk and into action. This will alleviate some of the burden from your current staff. Contract workers can also offer a fresh new perspective and inject some new ideas into the mix.
Increasing productivity will remain an important goal for employers throughout the year. If you are considering contract workers to help boost productivity, The Daniel Group can help. Click here to submit an order!
As our economy continues to recover, many employers are facing a similar challenge – they’re experiencing an increase in demand, but don’t have enough staff to manage productivity. For this reason, many employers turn to contract workers for help during periods of economic recovery.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, businesses employed 15,500 contingent workers per month in 2012. Furthermore, overall contingent employment increased by 7.7% from the previous year.
While there are numerous reasons why employers utilize a contingent workforce, here are the top five reasons:
- Flexibility – Contract workers allow you to address your current needs without making any long-term personnel commitments. This will allow you to maximize productivity with fewer burdens.
- Support Growth Projects – Your business should be concentrating on more than “getting the work done” – you should be focused on implementing initiatives that will help you achieve growth. You can use contract workers to manage growth projects. Or, you can use contract workers to handle your workforce’s current responsibilities while they focus on growth initiatives.
- Burnout Prevention – Employee burnout leads to mistakes, low company morale and turnover. Contract workers will provide some relief for your team and perhaps even encourage much-needed employee vacations.
- Eliminate Employment Costs – You don’t just pay an employee’s salary or hourly wage. There are many other expenses including payrolling, benefits spending and administrative costs. Staffing agencies manage these expenses for contract workers.
- Test Drive Employees – Contract arrangements allow you to “test drive” how an employee fits in with your company culture. If this professional ends up being an “A player”, you can bring him or her onto your payroll.
Contract workers can help you improve productivity, efficiencies and ultimately profitability. To place an order for contract workers, click here!
Picture yourself in this scenario: While sitting at your desk, your phone rings. Your top competitor’s chief salesperson is on the phone. He tells you that his company is closing and asks for a few moments of your time to discuss his next career move. Do you take him up on his offer?
You are similar to many managers if your answer is yes. You understand that key talent is challenging to find and pivotal to your organization’s growth. One of the most important roles of a leader is making sure your company has access to the right talent. A chief point in reaching the company’s goals is having the right workers in place.
To make sure that the right employees are in place to support your company’s business strategy, you need a hiring plan. Now is the perfect time to create a hiring plan for 2013. Your plan should include information on:
Your company’s business strategy:
Evaluate what factors are most important to your company. Take into consideration the core values, culture, mission and overall strategy of your company. These factors should all be evaluated when developing your hiring strategy, as they should all be aligned.
Your current staff:
- Do you have the right people in place?
- Does the current staff create the culture you want to achieve?
- Is everyone working to capacity?
- Is training needed to increase skills?
- Is turnover an issue for your company?
- Do you need to rethink your current job requirements? Are you expecting too much? Are you demanding too little?
- Is anyone scheduled to leave or retire?
- Should you upgrade technology to make your staff more efficient?
The staff you will need for the future:
- Do you need to upgrade any of your current staff?
- Is there a career path in place for each team member?
- What additional staff is needed to help you reach your goals?
Once you have determined what staff you will need, lay out the plan for how you will recruit and qualify your staff. Do you have a recruiting manager? Will hiring managers be responsible for their own staff? Will you partner with a staffing agency to help you identify top candidates for your team?
Your 2013 hiring plan should also address onboarding new hires and setting a career path within your company. You will need to improve your communication with new employees if your company’s turnover rate is high. This will ensure that they are assimilated into the team.
Smart Business: Houston recently featured Jarrod Daniel, CEO of The Daniel Group, in an article about how a company should establish a comprehensive hiring plan. The article can be viewed by clicking here.
Creating a strategic hiring plan after taking the time to think through these issues will go far in ensuring company success. If you would like help developing your staffing strategy or would like to place a job order, click here to contact us.
Your most important businesses asset is your staff. They are the source of your company’s operational performance and its future competitive advantage. Consequently, maximizing the success of each new hire is becoming increasingly important. Factors such as the growing costs associated with employment, global competition and an uncertain economy mean that employers must strengthen their hiring process even more. In order to effectively manage your workforce, you must understand what a bad employee looks like and what your ideal workforce looks like.
To understand the type of employee that you want to avoid, think about the worst hire you’ve ever made. Your thoughts might jump to a short-lived disaster where the employee was terminated for a clear inability to do the job or a breach of company policy. However, it's also important to think about a less "clearly obvious" bad hire. This may be an employee who didn't necessarily do anything outrageously bad, but an employee who also doesn't do anything great. Employees that are not helping your company build for the future can be equally harmful to your bottom line. They fail to produce, waste management’s time and impact everyone around them.
On the other hand, think about your best hires. These star players make magic in the company. Think about the following factors that contribute to their success:
- What are the employees’ traits?
- How did the employee gain basic skills and experience?
- What companies did the employee work for in the past?
- What schools did the employee attend?
- What are the employee’s hobbies?
- Are there key personality traits that seem to work best in your environment?
Determining the type of person that fits best into your organization is as important as understanding the required skill sets.
Be sure to examine the demographics in your area when hiring. You may think you know the ideal candidate, but you cannot create that person based on what you need. You are going to have to choose candidates that exist in your region. For example, you may need to hire someone that has a proficiency in an accounting software program. If no other companies in your geographic area use that same software, it is likely that you will not find someone with that skill. You will need to train them instead. According to a recent survey, “Two-thirds (68%) of employers surveyed reported not having analyzed the demographics of their workforce. These companies are not aware and unprepared to make necessary changes to effectively manage the changing workforce.”
A bad hiring decision can be a large expense with many costly factors: advertising, recruiter time, managers’ interviewing time, training resources and more all are factors when hiring. Hidden costs include loss of productivity, lost opportunities for growth, onboarding efforts, employee morale and company image. The cost of a bad hire varies from company to company, and understanding how to avoid a bad hire can quickly boost the bottom line.
At The Daniel Group, we deliver expert staffing solutions that help drive your success. For more information on employer services and to place a Job Order, click here.
Leveraging the resources of staffing firms is an effective strategy for employers during a recovering economy:
- Different hiring options (contract, contract-to-direct, direct-hire, executive search) offer employers flexibility
- Staffing firms eliminate the “hidden costs” associated with hiring including payrolling, administrative costs, benefits spending and unemployment claims
- Temporary and contract workers prevent employee burnout while increasing production levels
- Staffing firms use their expansive recruiting network to identify top talent
The recession affected many companies and as a result, businesses have cut back. To maintain production levels, the employees that remained were asked to take on work left by previous workers and diversify their workload.
The result of this change was that businesses became more lean and efficient. Until they were assured that the worst was behind them, managers were hesitant to hire permanent workers. As the recovery sputtered through 2010 and 2011, managers were beginning to have a paradigm shift. The option of a contract workforce gave managers more flexibility and helped them manage costs. These workers brought a new enthusiasm to the workplace and often added valuable and necessary skill sets. A “permanent” contingent workforce was becoming the new normal. Temps were becoming permanent.
These trends “are part of a larger trend in which work has become increasingly informal in recent years," says Nik Theodore, director of the Center for Urban Economic Development at the University of Illinois.
"Temporary jobs are the tip of the iceberg of ways that work has become casual-ized," he says. Many industries have accepted a permanent contingent workforce as their norm. The global workforce paired with an uncertain economy has resulted in companies rethinking their staffing strategies.
“The trend is subtly reshaping a workforce in which businesses traditionally employed workers through good times and bad, protecting them with benefits and job security. The basic bargain at the center of work used to be, employees gave loyalty and the organization gave security," says Daniel Pink, author of Free Agent Nation. "That bargain is kaput."
Please join us in celebrating National Staffing Employee Week! At The Daniel Group, we deliver expert staffing solutions that help drive your success. To place a job order, click here or call your local office today!
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Many organizations evade workforce planning until a staffing emergency occurs. Evaluating the required skills for a team member and the corporate culture are not tasks that should be rushed. Assess your current staff now and plan ahead so that you will be able to cover your production levels and create the company culture that you’d like. Ask yourself the following questions:
- What positions do you normally hire for and what can you expect for this year?
- In the last two years, how were the best candidates found for your company?
- Where do you believe the best candidates may be currently working? Is it at a competing company?
- What skills do you find the most difficult to hire for and where is more training required?
- What existing employees may be ready to take on additional responsibilities?
- What existing employees are retiring soon or may be leaving the company?
- What did you learn from previous exit interviews that can help you strengthen the engagement of current employees?
- What is planned for the year that will help your organization grow?
You can estimate the number of new hires you will require based on your answers to these questions.
Understand the Applicant Pool Now
If you are proactive, you will be able to make a better hiring decision because you will have a greater understanding of the applicants in your area. Create an open door policy and reserve time each week to interview available candidates. This will help you determine:
- Which organizations in your area have employees that best equal your culture
- Which college programs include training that is valuable in for your work environment
- What skills set are available in your geographical area and which skills will you need to provide training for
Use All Accessible Resources
Many companies partnered with temporary agencies during the economic downturn to help fill open positions. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the temporary help services industry accounted for 91% of the total non-farm job growth from June 2009 through June 2011. Nine out of ten employees added to the workforce were contract workers during this time of economic down turn. Two key factors contributed to the increased use of staffing agencies to increase headcount:
- Lack of company resources to handle the hiring process
- Reluctance to add to permanent head count due to economic uncertainty
Hiring “A” players is not a matter of luck. Careful planning and a hiring strategy are necessary for workforce success. You aren’t able to hire an outstanding performer if you only meet with or see average performers. Consider multiple sources for finding your candidates: set up a candidate friendly website, use employee referrals, network in business organizations and partner with a recruiter that has knowledge and experience with the culture of your company.
To place a job order or speak with someone about creating a staffing plan, Contact The Daniel Group today.
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