Helping employees succeed in the workplace should be a no-brainer. When employees succeed, so do their companies. Look no further than Netflix and the Virgin Group if you need proof. Both companies have discovered what it takes to help employees succeed, and they have reaped the benefits thereof.
Below are five things HR can do to help employees succeed. Of course, management has to be on board as well. When management and HR agree, there are virtually no limits to what they can do to guarantee employee success.
1. Hire for Careers, Not Jobs
Traditional thinking has HR departments hiring to fill jobs. That is the wrong way to go in the modern environment. Why? Because people are not afraid to switch jobs anymore. Moreover, workers are not necessarily looking for a single position they can spend 40 years at.
A BLS report published in 2015 showed that baby boomers hold nearly 12 different jobs between the ages of 18 and 48. This suggests that HR departments should no longer hire merely to fill open jobs. They should hire to help people advance their careers by taking an offered position. The career mindset is one that focuses equally on company and employee where the job mindset is focused primarily on the company.
2. Provide Development Opportunities
Believe it or not, one of the top two reasons people switch jobs is the feeling that they have reached the limit with their current employers. They feel as though they have nowhere else to go, so they jump ship in favor of a new opportunity. HR departments can address this issue by providing career development opportunities. These can be anything from continuing education to assigning new responsibilities that allow top talent to grow with the company.
3. Develop a Comprehensive Onboarding Process
Onboarding, if not done properly, can leave new hires disenfranchised before they even begin the first day of work. This is not a good way to start a new job. What can HR departments do? Develop comprehensive onboarding processes that follow new hires for at least 12 months. These processes should be designed to not only bring new hires up to speed but also guide them through that first year with a plethora of information for making the most of workplace opportunities.
4. Stick with Performance Reviews
There has been a tendency in recent years to transition away from performance reviews in favor of performance appraisals. What's the difference? A review looks strictly at individual performance as measured by assigned benchmarks. An appraisal compares an employee to his or her peers.
Performance appraisals can do more harm than good by comparing workers who should not be compared. HR departments that truly want to help employees should ditch the appraisal concept and stick with performance reviews.
5. Involve Employees in the Future
Finally, HR departments can come alongside employees to help them plan for their own futures. In so doing, they can also involve employees in planning for the future of the company. Tying the two together accomplishes a couple of things.
First, it makes employees feel as though their insights and knowledge are valued. Second, it gives employees a reason to stick around. Employees who feel like they have a real part in the company's future are more likely to invest themselves in said future.
The workplace has changed. Gone are the days of looking for a job you can work for 40 years until retirement. Today, it is all about careers. Helping employees succeed means helping them pursue their careers – rather than just giving them jobs.