How to Optimize Employee Productivity

Posted by Sheryl Wright on July 7th, 2021

Regardless of how a company measures employee productivity, its goals are to stay competitive in its market and make money. However, employees at certain levels care less about productivity and more about a work/home balance. They come to work daily for a paycheck and have little concern about overall company productivity. That leaves upper management and business owners to figure out how to optimize employee productivity.

For a business, productivity measures how efficiently labor and capital are used to produce a specific output. It is key to a company's success, and although there are different ways that it is measured, all company's want to optimize their employee productivity. Besides staying competitive and making more money, companies are concerned about productivity to keep up with consumer demands and grow.

Unfortunately, optimizing what employees can or are willing to do isn't always easy, and it sometimes becomes necessary to offer benefits and incentives to the employees. Some easy ways to optimize employee productivity are by:

Improving communications with employees.

Effectively communicating is essential for productivity and growth. When employees are kept up to date and feel like they are part of the team, the increased morale is immeasurable, and the workplace culture is one of inclusivity. Communicating with employees causes employees to want to engage with coworkers and management and live up to company goals and values.

Other reasons why communication optimizes productivity is because:

Communication avoids major misunderstandings among employees.

Communication helps employees trust their employers, which makes it a healthier work culture.

Communication creates increased accountability.

Communication gives employees more precise direction.

With a lot of businesses reverting a lot of their resources to online and even more switching to completely remote operations, it is important to have a solid website interface and communication system that allows for easy interactions across departments. Making sure you have a top-notch website is only the first step in the whole process.   

Make deadlines realistic.

For some employees, the times they focus on at work are nine to five (and break time). They don't factor deadlines into their day, and timelines that don't automatically adjust to their day start and day finish get ignored. Therefore, if you expect employees to optimize their productivity and you give deadlines, reassure employees that you are setting them up for success. To do that, outline information that breaks down the why, what, when, and how of the work done and deadline.

Why is this deadline important?

  • What steps will be necessary to meet the deadline?

  • When is it due?

  • How much time will it take to complete?

  • Is the deadline goal achievable?

  • Is it a team or individual project?

  • Has it been done before?

If you can positively answer these questions, it will ensure your employee that the deadline is attainable and realistic.

Strike a balance between accountability and authority.

Employees should never be fearful of management or business owners. Therefore, it is essential to set the tone early to ensure employees that although you are reasonable and approachable, you have expectations of them. They have to show up and do their job. That means when they don't, they will be held accountable for consequences.

Some ways to balance accountability and authority for optimizing productivity are:

Have difficult conversations, even if they are confrontational.

If your business is technical, provide real-time updates like HVAC dispatch software companies offer. Get automatic status updates to ensure your techs can provide the best service.

Consider what your employee is going through outside of work.

Have performance discussions often - especially if you are dissatisfied.

Set goals with employees and let them express their questions and concerns.

Follow up on goals and employee concerns. Follow through with raises, promotions, or promises.

Don't waste time micromanaging.

Micromanaging is the biggest killer of productivity at work and should be avoided at all costs. Employees do not need the constant criticism, control, and adverse effects of micromanaging. They lose motivation for doing their job and lose confidence in themselves when they work under a micromanager.

Micromanagement decreases productivity because it creates changes and pauses in the workflow. It leads the most competent employees to question their abilities to work independently.

In addition to decreased productivity, micromanaging causes:

  • Lower employee morale

  • Loss of innovation

  • Increased employee turnover

  • Loss of autonomy

  • Loss of trust

  • Discourages teamwork

Optimizing what employees can or are willing to do isn't always easy. However, there are some easy ways to optimize employee productivity. They are by improving communications with employees, making deadlines realistic, striking a balance between accountability and authority, and avoiding micromanaging employees.

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Sheryl Wright

About the Author

Sheryl Wright
Joined: June 10th, 2021
Articles Posted: 18

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