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Enhancing employee productivity through proactive Employee Relations

Source | LinkedIn | Kinjal Choudhary | Managing Partner at D360One Consultants LLP

Employee relations can be a significant factor in determining employee commitment and overall employee productivity. In several instances though, employee relations become a matter of concern only in a reactive manner when things start to fall apart one way or the other. Employee Relations is based on trust and the psychological contract between the employees and the organization, whether individually or collectively. Like every other element which impacts trust, it takes a long time to build but can be broken with just few instances, sometimes quite inadvertently. Progressive organizations look at employee relations in a proactive manner- they build adequate “emotional bank balance” with their employees so that on the few occasions when there may be a withdrawal from that “emotional bank balance”, there still is adequate balance left to propel the organization forward. It requires an investment of time, energy and effort more than anything else, but the payback more than compensates for it, not just in the long term but even in the medium term. The backbone of proactive employee relations to ensure commitment and productivity is dealing with employees in a fair and just manner under all circumstances. It is the Total Employee Experience (as employees experience the organization in a holistic manner) which differentiates proactive employee relations with reactive one. If the Total Employee Experience is positive, then employees are likely to be more committed and productive at workplace. Although this holds true whether we are talking about blue collar or white collar employees, whether we talk of entry level workers or senior executives, the impact is more immediate either ways when we go down the organization hierarchy. 

An organization needs to create a framework for positive Total Employee Experience, especially at frontline (including blue collar) to mid – management level.

The following parameters need to be focused on in a systematic manner to enhance Total Employee Experience. There needs to be a framework around each of these parameters and work towards enhancing each one of them in a manner which leads to greater Total Employee Experience. 

1.    Target Setting: Whether it is the blue- collar shop floor worker or it is a frontline sales person or it is the first line supervisor in sales or manufacturing, the target setting and communication of the same to the employees who are responsible for achieving the same is often a critical element in determining employee commitment.

2.    Real Time Progress: When employees know as close to real time as possible how they are doing, their commitment levels are significantly higher than otherwise. What process and mechanism is in existence for (a) measuring and (b) communicating the real time progress makes a difference in the commitment and productivity of employees, especially at the front line.

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