Some companies don’t consider Facebook a prime location to find quality employees, preferring to focus on more “professional” employment-related sites like LinkedIn or Monster.com. However, Facebook actually has many advantages for recruiting young, media-savvy, creative employees.
The Advantages of Recruiting On Facebook:
1. Facebook Has More Members Than Any Other Social Media Site
For sheer volume of candidates, Facebook can’t be beat. It has over a billion members, more than 5 times as many as LinkedIn.
2. More People Are Looking For A Job On Facebook Than You Think
You may consider Facebook a site to share party pictures and reconnect with old boyfriends from high school, but in fact, 48% of all job-seekers (and 63% of people who have a Facebook profile) used Facebook to hunt for a job last year.
In 2008, three professors from the Harvard Business School launched a study examining employees at 300 different Fortune 500 companies. The purpose of the study was to determine which psychological factors impact employee motivation and morale. (To read the full analysis, click here.)
The study found that employees are guided by 4 basic emotional needs or drives:
1. The Drive To Acquire
The drive to acquire is the need to obtain resources, including money and more intangible assets like social status.
2. The Drive to Bond
The drive to bond is the desire to form connections with individuals and groups. In the workplace this includes a desire to form relationships with both peers and managers.
Last week I wrote about the proven effectiveness of employee reward programs. But those statistics assume your company is using an effective reward program. Unfortunately, some types of employee rewards are less helpful than others, or don’t work at all. If you want to get the biggest bang for your buck, make sure you’re investing in a program that works!
3 Types of Employee Reward Programs That Simply Don’t Work:
1. Tenure Programs
In a recent study by Forbes, researchers found that 87% of recognition programs focus on tenure. Employees are rewarded simply for staying at a company a really long time. Unfortunately, rewarding tenure doesn’t work. As Forbes put it,
Tenure-based rewards systems have virtually no impact on organizational performance. Did you stay an extra year at your last job so you could get a 10-year pin? I doubt it.
It turns out that many of these tenure-based rewards programs are really legacy programs from the turn of the century when labor unions forced management to give employees “service awards” and hourly raises for tenure. Most large companies still have these programs today, yet… for the most part they aren’t creating much value.
Employee Recognition is a major industry. Today most companies spend 1-3% of payroll on employee rewards, for a total expenditure of $46 billion per year. But is that investment actually profitable? Does money spent on employee recognition reap real, measurable returns?
The answer is yes. Here are 4 recent studies that show the real, measurable, statistical difference between companies that invest in employee recognition programs, and companies that don’t.
4 Statistics That Prove Employee Recognition Programs Are Effective:
1. Recognition Programs Reduce Turnover
In a recent study by Forbes, companies that scored in the top 20% for building a “recognition-rich culture” enjoyed a 31% lower voluntary turnover rate. 31% is huge! Turnover costs companies thousands of dollars in recruiting, hiring, and training, to say nothing of the lower productivity of a disengaged or dissatisfied employee. Most studies estimate that it costs 30-50% of their annual salary to replace an entry-level employee, and 150% of the annual salary of a mid-level employee. A decrease in turnover of 31% could easily save your company tens of thousands of dollars a year.
Everybody knows that reward programs, perks, and bonuses are all beneficial in motivating current employees and making your company desirable to new recruits. However, while some employee rewards are simply “fun”, others have a significant impact on your employees’ productivity and quality of life.
3 Types Of Rewards That Make A Significant Difference To Your Employees:
1. Onsite Daycare
Onsite daycare is one of the most considerate and impactful perks you can offer your employees. It’s particularly significant for female employees, who are the fastest growing and most highly educated segment of the workforce. When you allow your female employees to keep their children close (particularly babies who might still be nursing), you allow women to return to work much sooner after giving birth, and you decrease the emotional trauma and stress of parting from a child too soon. Operating an onsite daycare at cost can be a huge financial savings to employees (vs. a for-profit daycare), and the proximity of the children allows parents to visit on breaks and over lunch hour, reducing sick days and increasing the family time that boosts happiness and focus.
When I was a poor university student, I waitressed at a steakhouse in Toronto. One night I served a table of 20 extremely demanding individuals. I ran my butt off bringing them refill after refill, until they finally sauntered out of the restaurant after midnight. Whether they did their math wrong or they were just savages, I got stiffed on the tip. This was a point in my life where $20 was the difference between the subway and take-out or walking and eating ramen, so I was devastated. Seeing my disappointment, my fellow waitress offered to split her tips for the night. She gave me half her $100 haul, and we both went home happy.
That was a decade ago, but I’ll never forget the girl who made a kind offer without being asked and without expecting anything in return. It was only $50, but it made a huge difference to my well-being.
The same lesson applies in the workplace.
I don’t shop at Wal-Mart anymore. I know it’s the cheapest option, but I just don’t care. I would rather pay more for my groceries than suffer substandard food quality, search fruitlessly for an employee when I need help, and wait in their abominably long checkout lines.
“Well”, you might say, “You’re in the minority. Most people just want the cheapest possible price.”
Turns out, that’s not true. Customers do care about the quality of their service, and they’re voting with their dollars. While Wal-Mart enjoyed a tiny 1.2% rise in sales this year, Costco’s most recent earnings report shows an 8% sales increase and an almost $70 million rise in membership fees.
Why is Costco crushing Wal-mart?
Most businesses recognize that rewarding employees is a crucial part of building a positive work environment. Employee reward programs increase motivation, improve production, and decrease turn-over. Simply put, reward programs are an investment that pays handsome dividends. But even knowing this, it can sometimes be difficult to free up the money to fund a reward program. Luckily, rewards don’t have to be expensive. There are many cheap and even free things you do that substantially improve employee moral:
5 Ways To Reward Your Employees Without Breaking The Bank:
1. Nap Time
Sleep deprivation is one of the leading causes of workplace error, not to mention stress and lethargy. Consider setting up a nap-time breakroom where employees can catch an hour’s shuteye over lunch, or during a long afternoon when they need to recharge. A cool, dark room with a few blankets and pillows won’t cost much money, but can significantly increase your employee’s health and focus.
2. Single Vacation Days
You may not be able to afford to give your employees an extra week or two weeks’ vacation, but a single day off can be huge bonus when it comes unexpectedly. Try rewarding your top producers with a random Wednesday or Friday to relax, recharge, or maybe do something fun. When Mark Faust, author of Growth or Bust: Proven Turnaround Strategies to Grow Your Business rewards his employees with a day off, he always includes event tickets or a golf course pass:
Giving a vacation day is one thing, but a vacation day that includes the fee for the pay lake or greens fee is another. They are being paid to fish or golf, and they have to do it—they aren’t stuck at home with a ‘honey do’ list or just a boring day off.
Often, in a corporate setting, we do things a certain way because that’s how we’ve always done them. Employees are expected to fall in line, and we don’t give them a lot of choice and flexibility because it’s easier to simply keep the status quo. But choice is an integral element of human satisfaction. Simply giving your employees more choice in their day-to-day activities can automatically increase their happiness, engagement, and productivity.
4 Choices You Can Offer Your Employees:
1. What They Work On
Too often, an employee’s duties are based off a template position description, without consideration of the actual individual’s strengths or preferences. Sit down with your employees one-on-one and ask them which parts of their jobs they love, and which tasks they would most like to delegate or trade with someone else. You may find that your office manager actually enjoys stocking the snack room, freeing up your receptionist to work on the more challenging accounting projects she’s been learning to tackle.
The classic image of corporate America is a row of cubicles: workers segmented in tiny uniform units like bees in a hive, pounding away on their keyboards with minimum interaction, minimum distraction, and maximum focus. But corporate America is being transformed as cutting edge technology companies like Google and Aetna strive make their work environments as collaborative, interactive, and stimulating as possible.
This is in response to a cavalcade of studies indicating that employees perform better in more flexible and positive work environments. For instance, at Aetna almost half the staff telecommutes to allow for family time and mediate the stress of commuting. This strategy is likely thanks to data like that garned by Stanford that showed a 13% increase in productivity among call center representatives who were allowed to work from home.
3 Ways To Structure Your Work Environment To Improve Employee Productivity:
1. Create Opportunities For Employee Interaction
Large break-rooms with amenities like foosball tables, free healthy snacks, and massage chairs may seem like a dangerous distraction. But in actuality, creating opportunities for your employees to relax and interact is one of the most effective ways to encourage work-related strategizing. Organizational guru John Seely Crown was the director of Xerox when he discovered a fascinating fact about his employees: when they hung out in the coffee room, ostensibly just wasting time or shooting the breeze, they were actually engaging in highly focused and productive conversations about on-the-job problems and solutions. Ben Weber, CEO of Sociometric Solutions, went to great lengths to organize employee coffee breaks at the same time, so employees would have the best chance to chat, interact, bond, and formulate.