Improving Employee Productivity

By: Nicole Cronin

Employee productivity should be a key consideration for HR.  Productivity does not follow linearly to the number of hours worked. In fact, most experts say that productivity will quickly decline after 50 hours.  So ultimately, how can you make your employees more productive within the heightened productivity limit of less than 50 hours.

  • Delegate Tasks: Tasks must be delegated to employee’s strength. Although training is a critical part of productivity, during critical and busy seasons delegate the work towards strengths of each employee to meet the larger goal.
  • Development: Continuous learning is everything. Cross train employees on different tasks. This way if you need to delegate the work you have the extra help ready to go.  Ideally, you do not want workers to learn on the fly; although, we all know sometimes in the real world this happens.
  • Acknowledgement: Celebrate the accomplishments even the small ones. A simple “thank you” or “awesome job” goes a long way to a team and can keep the motivation going.
  • Make Cuts: If you see productivity has fallen, look at all that extra “busy” work that might be bogging down your processes. See how you can alter it or maybe even get rid of it.
  • Telecommuting: Contrary to logical thought, those who telecommute are more productive than office workers by 13% which is a significant number. Maybe think about offering those who are top performers or most productive a few days a week to work from home, thus incentivizing productivity at the same time.
  • Communication: Information says emails can take  approximately 28% of an employee’s time.  Think about that, 2.24 hours of an 8 hour day in emails.  If you work in the same building with the people you are emailing, consider calling a quick meeting instead of using an email chain or try a phone call.  Emails are great for tracking conversations but can greatly deplete productivity.

Employee productivity should be one of the top concerns in an organization.  If you are experiencing low productivity, it is time to examine why.