By Dr. Srinivas Kandula, EVP & Global Head, HR, iGATE Corporation
As we head into the summer months, many organizations are looking for ways to keep employees productive, engaged and motivated. Of course, it is important to maintain a motivated workforce at all times; the long summer weeks, filled with trips to the beach and annual family vacations, is a prime time to begin working on your employee engagement techniques.
It’s important to take a comprehensive, integrated approach to people management. You must work to understand what truly motivates your workforce – using numerous surveys and studies will allow you to develop a best practices approach from leaders around the globe. This approach will garner you outstanding employee engagement.
To grow and maintain a clear record of excellence in people management, follow what we call the 5 C’s of HR: Compensation, Camaraderie, Career, Culture, and Competence.
Employees must feel their compensation will protect their quality of living, and help them meet their long-term financial interests. We recommend designing the compensation structure to ensure the basic salary meets the employee’s quality of living, and incorporating a bonus or stock option plan that is performance-based, to meet long-term financial interests.
Everyone needs a circle of friends – and when employees feel they have compatible peers at the workplace, the workplace is a more comfortable, pleasant, peaceful place to be. It’s important to have many structured employee engagement programs developed internally to create a positive workplace environment. You should always strive to preserve and maintain ‘positive psychological capital.’ This includes working to reduce meetings and meaningless paperwork, and creating peer groups for employees to interact, learn, and socialize. The aim should always be to create a high happiness index and add meaning to employees’ lives.
Every employee wonders: how will I grow in my career? As a company, help each employee address that important question and concern: make sure there are well-defined career and competency programs, as well as a personalized and individual focused development program. Career planning management systems should help employees chalk out their career paths for the next 5-10 years within the company. Each employee needs to have a clear roadmap of how they will grow in the organization, and what competencies they will have to acquire to move forward on their preferred path.
Business culture must inspire and encourage positive interactions and growth. Employees should have the freedom to propose unconventional ideas, to be entrepreneurial and flexible. Treat people as assets, and work hard to build trust, creating a work environment that is beneficial for employees’ growth. Strive to create a more constructive work culture based on scientific study of tasks rather than rule-of-thumb work methods. It’s also important to have mutually beneficial relationships with your employees. That’s why we invest in people and work hard to keep turnover low and retention high.
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Opportunities to learn are crucial – for the employee as well as for the company. For example, develop a competency framework, where employees are examined on the parameters of a number of competencies every six months. Then provide training to fill the skills gaps. This should encompass technical training and growth efforts such as leadership development, communication skills, emotional intelligence – touching the many needs and desires of employees to create a high level of satisfaction, engagement, and involvement.
Focusing on these five areas will yield a more positive corporate environment where each employee feels engaged, involved and valued, not only during the long days of summer, but year-round.
Dr. Srinivas Kandula is executive vice president and the global head of Human Resources at iGATE Corporation, the first Business Outcomes driven integrated Technology and Operations (iTOPS) solutions provider. iGATE delivers effective IT solutions to over 360 Fortune 1000 clients spanning such industries as: banking & financial services; insurance & healthcare; life sciences; manufacturing, retail, distribution & logistics; media, entertainment leisure & travel; communication, energy & utilities; public sector; and independent software vendors. For more information, visit: www.igate.com.