If you’re a business owner, one of your major concerns should be how to measure your employees’ productivity. After all, you’re the one paying out their salaries at the end of each month and together they add up to a big chunk of your bottom line expenditures. In addition, keeping an accurate assessment of employee productivity lets you gauge how skilled a worker is and how valuable he/she is to the company. You might want to take a second look at a poor performer who might be preventing your business from moving ahead at a desirable pace.
Keeping an accurate accounting of workers’ output isn’t as straightforward as it used to be. Employees today are up against a host of distractions that make it hard for them to focus on what is required of them and they are often hard pressed to submit their best efforts.
Despite these drawbacks, there are ways to achieve a good measure of employee productivity:
- Goal Reaching
Accurate accounting of employee productivity requires a strong sense of communication between workers and their company leader. This close connection allows for constructive goal setting which is a vital ingredient to employee motivation.
There are several ways to use goal-setting as a motivator. One way is for the company owner to discuss the goals with his workers before finalizing them. This involves accepting worker input and setting the standards together for reaching these goals. If this method is not appropriate for the business owner, he can set the goals himself and draw on the participation of his workers in accomplishing these goals. Using either method prompts workers towards reaching the finish line successfully. By communicating directly with his workers, everyone shares equally in reaching the company’s goals.
Studies have found that employees who understand the direct connection between their productivity and the company goals are more focused and driven and end up more productive than those who have no vision of how their efforts affect company goals. Despite this, statistics show that only 40 percent of workers know what their employer’s goals and strategies are.
- Productivity by Time Management
Measuring productivity by time management can be difficult and seems to work best when used with small businesses. Software programs are available that can correctly measure how much time each employee spends being productive and can identify those that are not putting in the necessary hours. Some of these programs require employees to keep a daily progress report thereby creating a running account of how long it took them to complete specific jobs and projects.
- Tracking Comments and Feedback
Another way to determine productivity is by using feedback and comments as a measurement but this requires close interaction among the team members and is more successful in smaller departments or organizations where everyone works together as a unified group.
Closely associated with performance goal setting, timely and effective feedback is a crucial element in a successful performance management program. A manager who keeps his employees informed on their progress can expect to see increased improvement towards their goals. Workers need to know in a timely manner how they’re doing, what’s working, and what’s not.
Feedback can also come from other members of the team. This calls for the employee’s output to be evaluated by everyone they work with on a daily basis. Each individual must know and understand their co-workers’ functions in the business as well as their work obligations and professional responsibilities.
- Measure Profits Not Productivity
Mid-sized businesses often prefer to measure employee productivity by company profits. This eliminates the need to monitor individual employee progress and mainly involves keeping track of the bottom line.
- Measure by Sales Numbers
Calculating actual sales productivity isn’t an easy method of measuring employee output and it requires the establishment of a baseline before it can be done. But despite the many factors that can come into play, watching sales production numbers can provide a pretty accurate assessment of how each worker is progressing.
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