Effective methods to improve employee productivity

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

By James Daniels

Unless it is operating as a solopreneur, the lifeblood for any business is its employees. They are responsible for everything from dealing with customer complaints to putting together marketing campaigns. As a result, if a single employee isn’t hitting their goals, this has a knock-on effect for the entire company – and that’s not good.

On the other hand, a highly productive employee is one that can help take the business they represent to the next level. They are achieving their targets, they are helping coworkers to complete their projects, and they are fully engaged in supporting the company’s overall goals.

The problem: employees are not productive enough in general. According to statistics, the average office worker is productive for only about 30% of an eight-hour workday.

Have you been experiencing something similar with your staff members? As employee performance can make or break your small business, it’s essential you boost productivity levels. To make that happen, below are a few proven techniques to keep in mind.

Improve internal communication

Communication is key for a happy, productive employee. With clear guidance and instructions, workers can feel comfortable – rather than confused – about the projects they are working on. Defined communication channels also mean they can effortlessly reach out to coworkers and higher-ups when necessary, share documents, collaborate on projects, and so on.

With the right internal communication platform, one where messages are sent out seamlessly and integrates with other tools, interactions between employees are only further enhanced. Which platform is best? One of the best options is an enterprise social network (ESN). For more information, Happeo has a comprehensive guide on what is an ESN.

With greater accessibility across departments and employees being just a quick message away, this helps to significantly improve productivity levels. Not only does it enhance efficiency, but job satisfaction levels also go up – and a happy employee is always a more productive one.

Supply employees with the right technology

A communication platform is a strong start, yes, but it shouldn’t be the only piece of technology you provide your employees. There are various tools out there, from ERP software to mobile devices, which can help to lower frustration levels and boost productivity at the same time. Many software solutions can be bought ready-made, but some businesses can benefit from custom software built especially for them. Building ERP from scratch, for example, can take time, but it’s worth the investment if you want to streamline operations and enhance workflows.

Ultimately, employees need the right tools to complete their tasks. If you supply them with the technology to perform their role effectively, employees can push on with their tasks, not have to worry about problems or delays cropping up and get more done in less time. These days, it is possible to purchase software to streamline and simplify almost any process within your business, from accounting to time-tracking to customer relationship management (CRM). For example, if you are a business that manages a number of leases at once, it could be worth investing in lease management software as this can increase your compliance with the necessary accounting standards, improve the accuracy of your lease tracking, and streamline the entire lease administration process. Remember, however, when you are buying any software, whether that be for CRM or lease accounting, you should first get demo of the software to ensure you understand how it will operate within your business and whether it will be a suitable, long-term solution for automation and simplification. Once you have done this, you will then be able to make a decision and purchase the best software solution for your business and employees.

Encourage opportunities for growth

A stagnant employee is one that will quickly lose motivation. If they don’t feel it’s possible to progress further in their career, they are less likely to maintain their standards – and that includes those all-important productivity levels.

Due to this, it’s essential your company supplies opportunities for employees to grow. One way of doing this is by opening the door to them continuing their education. Another option is to supply internal cross-training, giving your workers the chance to develop new skills and work in different areas of your business. The potential for internal promotions can also go a long way in keeping them motivated – and productive – working for your company.

As a small business, it can be tricky to present opportunities for growth to your employees. Yet if you manage to achieve this, it’s one of the most effective ways to keep staff engaged and happy to work for your company.

Build a healthy company culture

If an employee is isolated and working in a sterile office environment, this isn’t going to do much for their morale. In fact, it is likely to derail their productivity levels and see them searching for other job opportunities.

It has never been more important to build a healthy company culture. There are various aspects that come into play when developing this culture, including your approach to ethics, goals, and the overall vision for your business.

Another key element is the work environment you provide. In certain cases, such as running a physical retail store, there are restrictions in what you can do to improve the environment. However, even creating a more relaxing, sociable staff room has the ability to improve employee morale.

There are also some seemingly minor workplace changes that can make a significant difference. These include:

-Natural light: by introducing more natural light into your workspace, it boosts everything from focus levels to sleep patterns.

-A splash of paint: Did you know that plain white walls can lead to an increasing number of mistakes from your employees? Due to this, introduce a fresh splash of paint when possible. It may sound crazy, but green walls can help motivate workers, while blue is known as a creativity booster.

-Go green: By adding plants to the workspace, this assists with making employees feel more comfortable.

Praise and rewards

Picture the scenario. An employee has just finished completing a long-term project. They’ve had to meet demanding deadlines, finish tough assignments, and go above and beyond to complete their work. After doing all of this, they receive nothing in return. No words of praise from their manager. No reward for their hard work. They are simply expected to move on to their next project.

Do you think this is a suitable motivator?

Of course not. It’s very much the opposite. Now employees don’t necessarily expect a pat on the back for every little task they complete, but some sincere praise every now and then helps to show them their efforts are being appreciated. You can also take it a step further by rewarding them for their work. This could be everything from a complimentary meal to an afternoon off.

Happy and motivated employees are ones that are naturally more productive.


James Daniels is a freelance writer, business enthusiast, a bit of a tech buff, and an overall geek. He is also an avid reader, who can while away hours reading and knowing about the latest gadgets and tech, whilst offering views and opinions on these topics.

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