Article | March 30, 2020
The Covid-19 outbreak has everyone from communities, to Governments, healthcare organisations to business leaders coming together to implement changes that will slow down the spread of the virus. The resounding impact to the way of life & work for millions around the globe, has been seismic with immediate term measures including travel restrictions to the EU block for 30 days, the closures of museums, cafes & restaurants, to the cancellation of sporting events, conferences and most recently in the UK, the closure of schools for almost all school age children.
Article | April 28, 2020
No matter if it’s small or big, every business needs great talent to make the company rise higher on the success ladder. Searching the right candidate — someone with the right qualities and who fits in the budget is a quite challenging task for employers. Particularly, small businesses face many obstacles in the hiring process due to the limited availability of too many things.
According to the facts about small businesses, there are more than 30.2 million growing businesses present in the U.S. that are trying to hire good employees and are competing in their respective fields. In a situation like this surely all employers or business owners will be working hard to attract top talent from the industries in order to grow their businesses.
No worries if you are one of them and feeling like a small fish in a big pond. We understand you, and so here are some methods that you can look to find the right candidates and make your workforce a dedicated team of quality people.
Learn more: Qualities to look in an employee when hiring for a small business
Table of Contents:
- Impressive Web Presence
- Employee Connections
- Speak about the Growth
- Constructive Feedback with Communication
- Exciting Benefit Packages
Impressive Web Presence
The first thing what good candidates do before deciding to go for an interview is check the website and social media profiles of the company. Apart from the brick-and-mortar building, it’s the first impression they builds up about you. So it needs to be neat, clean, and impressive.
To understand your business in detail, clearly mention your products or services on the website and social media platforms so that candidates can understand what you offer. Also, make sure you display the logo of the company, brand message, short and long term vision of the company that delivers your aims and attract top talent that aligns with the company’s goals.
Sometimes candidates directly visit the website instead of going through the job searching platforms so here is an opportunity to make them stay on the website and find about the current openings in your organization. And how can you do this? By creating a separate page for ongoing hiring that tells the visitors about all necessary information including position, eligibility criteria, the number of vacancies, the address of the company, and the contact details.
Eventually, all this will create interest and the probability of hiring such interested candidates with the right skillset will increase.
Finding a new candidate right from the beginning is a quite lengthy and time-consuming process for every employer. Why not use a smart way to search candidates to fulfill the position that takes away this pain?
And what’s that method? Well, it’s the people you work with right now.
Yes. Your existing employees can give you high potential and industry-specific candidates through their offline contacts and online platforms like LinkedIn. To reach out to such candidates, you can create an employee referral program that offers attractive rewards in exchange for referring the eligible candidate.
This method of tapping on employee connections will help you save your money that you otherwise will be spending on running ads, posting on job portals, or even talent agencies.
Speak about the Growth
For employees, it is difficult to see the success path at a company where thousands of people are already working whereas they can see a clearer way at a company of 50 employees. So we can say that a small company incorporates a straightforward career path and are less complex as compared to bigger companies and it offers tremendous opportunities to people who want to learn things and grow in their career.
Having such an atmosphere will quickly attract candidates who keep the desire of gaining knowledge and management skills. So, highlight these additional points that you can offer to ambitious employees and give them the golden chance to be the best at your organization. And the fact is, they would also like to be the part of your organization that is a perfect playground for faster growth.
Learn more: Employee growth in small business
Constructive Feedback with Communication
Face-to-face communication with employees is more likely to be a possible thing in smaller companies. It creates a feeling of being valued, and that has great importance in an employee’s life. So it is always a wise act to be in constant touch with the employees who are already contributing to your organization and yet there is a lot more to do with their help.
Secondly, find ways to communicate with the new and existing employees to know their dreams and career goals. For this, you can take feedback from them and have a healthy discussion on how their dreams are suitable to meet the company’s vision, and together you can fulfill it.
As a result of their work, offer them timely rewards on an ongoing basis. Give every individual and team, constructive feedback which will help them to be the better version of themselves.
According to stats about employee feedback, 69% of employees like to work harder if they receive feedback and their efforts are getting recognized. It is easy to work on the feedback that encourages your employees to stay in the organization and this cultural positivity that you can demonstrate will spread through word of mouth.
Exciting Benefit Packages
High skilled employees seek companies who offer exciting benefits packages, flexible work timing, and greater work-life balance along with their career growth. As an employer, fulfilling employees’ expectations from your organization and hiring those who can add value to your business in the upcoming years is important. This benefit package can include health insurance, paid vacations, sick leaves, life insurance, and retirement plan, paid maternity and paternity leaves, on-site daycare, flexible work atmosphere, etc. Many of the companies already give a few or many of these benefits to stay competitive.
According to your budget and employee demands, you can create an exciting employee benefits package for the new and existing people who work for you. Facilitating them with such types of packages will help to attract new talent and retain those who are already present in your company.
These are the ways that show skilled employees how well you can understand them which results in a win-win situation for both of you.
Do you want good employees in your small organization? Then this is how you can embrace the benefits of being a small company and attracting the top talent in the industry.
Article | November 9, 2020
Remote work has become the norm in 2020, and it has brought forth newer challenges for organizations. While productivity has increased over 13% after this switch to remote mode, employers are still struggling to figure out a way to measure and quantify the productivity of remote workers.
It is now more important than ever to have defined key performance indicators for all your remote workers. But before getting into how you can evaluate them, you need to formulate a plan to deal with remote work.
What Are Effective KPIs for Remote Employees
KPIs or key performance indicators are tools that help employers quantify employee performance in real, measurable terms. When it comes to performance and productivity, there are a lot of vague assumptions in place. Also, each employer or manager has their own idea of productivity. Some may find punctual employees to be effective, while some may not care about their timings at all as long as they complete their work on time.
In this case, how do you make sure that all employees are judged effectively and fairly? This is where KPIs for remote employees enter the picture. They serve as a point of reference for employers when evaluating employee performance. KPIs for remote workers are objective and offer a fair indication of remote employees’ performance.
When you have teams working remotely, KPIs are especially effective. When you don’t know when the employees start work or how many breaks they take, the only effective way to measure their productivity is to have defined KPIs for remote workers for each process. This will also allow you to formulate a remote work based pay strategy for your employees.
So how do you ensure effective KPIs for remote workers?
There are several ways to determine KPIs for remote workers, but one of the easiest and most effective ways is to make sure that the KPIs for remote workers are SMART. SMART is a planning tool, but it works really well for KPIs too. After all, KPIs are a method of planning towards success. SMART KPIs are:
Make sure that the KPIs for remote workers are not vague or ambiguous. Do not set goals like ‘improve the quality of the blog’. Ambiguity will only lead to further chaos. Be specific in what you expect, and communicate it well. A good example of a specific goal would be:
Proofread all the blogs and make them error-free.
Setting KPIs for remote workers is supposed to help you quantify performance. Make sure the KPIs for remote workers are measurable in clear and precise terms. If you were to make the above-mentioned goal measurable, it would look something like this:
Proofread 20 blogs and ensure they are error-free.
A lot of leaders believe in setting the bar high to inspire their team to do more. But there’s a difference between setting a high bar and gearing up for an impossible task. If the KPIs for remote workers are impossible to achieve, it will demotivate your employees and they won’t be able to perform at their best. Evaluate each of your employees’ capacity before you set KPIs, that way you will know if the KPIs you set for remote employees are achievable or not.
The work culture in each company is different. What is considered important in one organization may not be of any importance in the other. In this regard, the nature of KPIs differs from workplace to workplace. However, it is important to stay relevant for the sake of efficiency. ‘Dress appropriately’ may be good advice, but it cannot be a KPI for remote employees as it is irrelevant to your employees’ work unless they are in an exclusively client-facing role. Here’s a sample of KPIs for managers:
Calculate the working hours of all your team members and report it to the Human Resources department.
The KPIs you set for remote workers may be fantastic in every other aspect but if they aren’t time-bound, you will not be able to quantify them. Take the above-mentioned example – Proofread 20 blogs and ensure they are error-free. Here, the employee knows what is expected of them in clear, measurable, and defined terms but they have no time limit to work within. An employee might finish 20 blogs in a month while another might take three months. Are both these employees equally productive?
In order to have a clear understanding of your employees’ performance and productivity, you need to ensure that the KPIs for remote workers have a time-bound deadline. This way, you and your employees will have a clear picture of expectations vs. performance. A good example would be:
Proofread 20 blogs by the end of the month and ensure they are error-free.
SMART KPIs are tried and tested in several organizations and have proven to be an instrumental tool in evaluating employees.
Consider OKRs as an Add-on
Most organizations use KPIs for remote workers to quantify and evaluate performance. However, with Google’s adoption of OKR, there has been a noticeable shift towards OKRs. OKRs are Objectives and Key Results —it’s an evaluation mechanism designed by Andy Grove for Intel. This system allows you to define objectives and tie them to key results that act as smaller goals for your employees. A good example of OKRs would be:
Objective – Increase website traffic by 50%
Key result 1: Create 50 pieces of informative content for visitors.
Key result 2: Promote created content on social media.
Key result 3: Run a Google Ads campaign to gain more visitors.
You may wonder what the difference between OKRs and KPIs for remote workers is. The key difference is that KPIs are activity-based goals while OKRs are objective-based goals. Take a look at the same example to understand this further:
Proofread 20 blogs by the end of the month and ensure they are error-free.
Objective – Improve the blog quality
Key result 1: Proofread all the blogs in the next quarter
Key result 2: Create guidelines for content creation
Key result 3: Run all content assets through QC
The key difference in the above given examples is that KPIs talk of a single task whereas OKRs align all the tasks under an objective. So, which one should you use?
To succeed, you should ideally use both of these systems. KPIs for remote workers are really helpful for ongoing projects and small-term goals. However, if you’re starting a new project, or want to realign your company’s objectives towards a single goal, OKRs are your best bet.
Effective Metrics for Remote Workers
No matter what system you use for evaluation, or what your principles behind the evaluation are, it all boils down to the ‘how’. How do you evaluate them? What metrics do you use for evaluating remote employees? While several organizations have their own concept of these, BSC designer has classified these metrics into three important pillars:
Employee learning skills
It’s no surprise that self-discipline ranks number one when it comes to KPIs for remote workers. A remote employee can only be as effective as their self-discipline. And when your entire team is distributed, it is especially important to quantify, assess, and reward self-discipline. But how do you measure a concept as ambiguous as self-discipline?
Set up the metrics in a way that self-discipline is measured through each task. Quantify it through the following measures:
Was the task completed on time?
If not, was it communicated in time?
Was it up to the expected quality mark?
If not, were the reasons communicated in time?
These questions will help you evaluate an employee’s self-discipline in tangible and measurable terms.
According to Buffer’s 2019 State of Remote Work report, 17% of the respondents mentioned that communicating or collaborating with their team was the biggest challenge they faced while working remotely. Clearly, communication is a pain point for remote work. And ensuring that your team practices effective communication tactics can alleviate this challenge.
You can use the following factors to quantify effective communication:
Are the requirements for the task communicated to the supervisor effectively?
If working in a team, are all relevant factors shared with the team members at regular intervals?
In case of a glitch or blockers, is the issue informed immediately?
Were the instructions paid attention to? Is the quality as expected?
In case of delays or quality issues, were explanations provided before the deadline?
Is all the documentation crisp, clear, and error-free?
While this list is not exhaustive in any way, it will give you a clear understanding of your team’s communication skills.
Employee Learning Skills
Remote work throws a wrench in your regular processes. Teams have to deal with delayed communication channels, equipment breakdown, network errors, and a lot more. On top of that, while these issues can be fixed easily in an office, they aren’t easily resolved in a remote setting. Your team must be equipped to learn new things quickly while being able to follow instructions to a T. This is where employee learning skills enter.
Measuring learning skills can be tricky, as everyone learns differently. However, the acquisition of new skills and their application can easily be observed. You can use these questions to quantify these skills:
Do they take up learning new skills of their own volition?
If confronted with a task that requires a new skill set, do they volunteer to learn it?
When a new skill is learned, how is it applied to the task?
How long does it take for them to learn the new skill?
How effective is their work after the acquisition of new skills?
How quickly do they understand instructions?
How well do they perform tasks after getting thorough instructions?
These questions will help you grasp your employees’ overall learning skills. An employee with good learning skills is a big asset to your organization.
There are several other ways to determine KPIs for remote workers as each organization has a different set of requirements. However, this will give you a general idea of how to go about setting up your KPIs for remote workers.
Expert Tip: Measure the quality and quantity of work over the time spent doing it. This will enhance your employees’ trust and improve their productivity.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you set KPIs for remote employees?
KPIs for remote employees are different from those for regular employees. You need to focus on the results over the time spent. Set KPIs that measure the output over input.
How can I monitor employees that work remotely?
An easy way to monitor is to break down the KPIs for remote workers into smaller goals and touch base with your employees frequently to keep a track of their progress.
How do you measure productivity remotely?
Productivity metrics or KPIs for remote workers such as ‘the number of leads converted’ can be a good measure of measuring productivity remotely.
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"name": "How can I monitor employees that work remotely?",
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"name": "How do you measure productivity remotely?",
"text": "Productivity metrics or KPIs for remote workers such as ‘the number of leads converted’ can be a good measure of measuring productivity remotely."
Article | March 15, 2020
In such a dynamic, competitive market, finding the right candidate with the desired skills and cultural values will emerge as a key challenge for all recruiters. As the technology landscape continues to transform, it is causing business realities to shift and new operating models to emerge. On one hand, deployment of intelligent technologies and widespread automation is expected to displace jobs, on the other, it will bring about the need for reskilling the workforce. In such a scenario, the success of an organization will be defined by the quality of its personnel and the unique skill set they possess.