How Technology Can Help to Prevent Workplace Stress

We spend over eight hours a day, five days a week at work.

Some of us may even spend more of our waking hours with our colleagues than our families.

It’s therefore important that our working lives leave us happy and fulfilled.

Sadly, studies show that one in four of us will suffer from a mental health condition in our lifetime.

Spending so much of our waking time at work, it’s inevitable that work will affect our mental health.

Too much pressure or long-term stress can cause employees to burn out, leaving them with less energy to function in and out of work.

Too little work – or a lack of stimulation – can also lead to stress. Employees feel under-fulfilled, like they’re wasting their time, and want to be anywhere but at work.

The more stressed employees are, the less work they get done, and the more businesses suffer.

Embracing technological innovations puts employees back in control of how they spend their time at work and greatly reduces the risks of stress and burnout.

Here are four ways technology can make employees feel more fulfilled, and help to prevent workplace stress.

Organize and coordinate schedules

Trying to find a time when a team can meet to discuss something important can often take as long – sometimes even longer – than the meeting itself.

If it’s an important or last-minute meeting, trying to get everyone together can cause employees huge amounts of stress.

There’s always a risk of someone being double-booked because they didn’t check their calendar before agreeing to a suggested time.

This then causes more stress because the meeting needs to be rescheduled.

Calendar connectivity means that this process can be automated, preventing double-bookings and avoiding any stress the process could cause.

Instead of long email chains or back-and-forth phone calls, the person organizing the meeting can tell the software whom they need in the meeting. It can then suggest a list of times when everyone is free to meet. If calendars are set up for bookable resources such as meeting rooms or parking spaces, it can incorporate this into its calculations too.

Connecting an employees’ calendar to HR software also means that they don’t need to switch between applications to keep track of their schedules.

Speed up and streamline complicated processes

On the surface, organizing interviews seems like an easy process, but with so many candidates and interview panellists to coordinate, it quickly becomes laborious.

Hiring managers can spend as many as 20 hours a month organizing interviews.

Automating this process gives hiring managers more time to spend on other tasks, saves interview panellists from having to constantly flit between their calendar and emails, and allows candidates to book their interviews discreetly.

Another process that can be automated is the organization of staff appraisals. In large organizations, this process can be particularly time-consuming.

However, when employees are calendar connected, software can work out the best times for an employee to meet their manager and automatically add the appointments to their calendar. No matter what size their team is, the process is instant.

Offering training programs for employees to expand their skills further breaks up the tedium of the daily routine.

Training programs don’t just have to take place at work, either.

There are thousands of online courses out there, and many of them are free.

Many industries also have their own courses or week-long events that employees can attend to network and get a change of scenery.

Giving employees new ways to learn and grow helps to spark new ideas that they can bring back to the workplace.

Learning new skills is also an effective way to prevent stagnation and keep employees interested in their work.

Monitor employee wellbeing

Looking after employees is a key part of HR.

New technology means HR teams can track how employees feel and gain an insight into how different teams work.

They can also encourage employees to get up and get moving by offering incentives such as fitness trackers.

Communication tools such as Slack give employees the opportunity to keep in touch whether they work in the same building or different parts of the country.

Tools like this can be key for managers and HR staff to keep informed of how employees are getting along, particularly if they work remotely full- or part-time.

Let employees take control of their schedules

The more things a person has floating around in their mind, the more difficult it is for them to organize their thoughts.

When employees have a lot to do and nowhere to organize their time, it’s inevitable that something will be forgotten.

Taking advantage of technology allows them to use it for everything from creating to-do lists in Trello to tracking customer queries in Zendesk.

Giving employees somewhere they can make a note of everything they have to do means that they spend less time trying to remember everything and more time getting things done.

The technology you provide for your employees matters

Richard Branson once said that if you “look after your staff. They’ll look after your customers. It’s that simple.”

When employees feel overwhelmed or overworked, they’re less productive and less able to help a business to grow.

Employees are what make a business a success.

Choosing the right people is crucial, but that’s only part of it.

If you don’t look after them, they won’t be as good to your business as they could be.

By nurturing employees, making them feel appreciated, and giving them opportunities to learn and grow, it not only benefits them, but the business, too.

The more knowledge employees acquire in their industry, the more they can use this to create a better customer experience and increase company revenue.

This then means the company can grow and increase its profits faster.

Everyone wins.


Source: How Technology Can Help to Prevent Workplace Stress | Cronofy Calendar API

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How to Build a Strong Employer Brand Image

Employer Brand

There are many benefits to having a strong employer brand. It can decrease the cost per hire by 43%, and even decrease the likelihood that new hires will leave their new company within the first six months by 40%.

75% of job seekers say that an employer’s brand is a deciding factor when applying for a job. That’s 3 out of 4 qualified candidates that you could be missing out on because of a poor employer brand.

You could even be affecting your stock prices by up to 36%.

We looked at the impact of a negative employer brand in a recent post, but if you’re just starting out – or are changing direction – how do you build a strong employer brand?

Create a positive candidate experience

Creating a positive experience for candidates, whether they’re successful or not, improves your brand image and makes people more likely to reapply for future roles.

Creating a negative experience for candidates makes your company seem less welcoming to work for and could put off prospective candidates.

The easier and more open you make the application process, the happier candidates are likely to be. They may even advocate for you even if they’re unsuccessful!

If you create a negative experience, you may lose customers, as Virgin Media did in 2014. Thanks to a poor hiring process, they lost 7,500 customers.

More and more candidates and employees are leaving reviews on sites such as Glassdoor. Like it or not, these reviews have a significant impact on your employer brand.

As many as 52% of job applicants research a company on Glassdoor before applying for a role. If they don’t like what they see, that’s 52% of potential candidates you could miss out on.

Positive Candidate Experience

Give your employees more reasons to stay

Richard Branson once said, “Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to.” He went on to say: “If you look after your staff, they’ll look after your customers.”

When employees feel welcome and appreciated, they’re more productive and more likely to stick around.

One of the best ways to foster employee loyalty is to keep employees engaged. Allowing them control over their schedules, automating dull tasks and offering staff training are just some of the ways this can be done.

Offering employees perks such as flexitime, being able to work from home, or even discounted gym memberships all help to make employees feel valued. They will, in turn, be more likely to promote the company’s culture to their social circles.

This organic promotion of the company can yield great dividends. Discovering how well a company looks after their employees may make friends and family members more likely to consume their products but also more interested in working there.

According to StackOverflow 2017 Developer Survey, 27.8% of employed software developers found their current position through a friend, family member or former colleague. Given how expensive and time-consuming it can be to find developers this is a key growth factor.

Dog Loyalty

Be engaged and engaging on social media

Social media is a ubiquitous part of twenty first century life whether we like it or not.

I don’t know about you, but the first time I hear about a company, I search for them on Facebook and Twitter, before even visiting their website. And that’s just to find information about their services not because I want to work there.

According to CareerArc, job applicants use the same tools when researching a prospective employer – 62% of candidates research a company on social media ‘to evaluate an employer’s brand‘.

Not having a social media presence takes away an opportunity to display your business’ culture and identity. For example, you could use your company Twitter account to share your teams’ accomplishments and deal with customer queries.

Being active on social media helps promote a positive company image to both consumers and potential hires. Be friendly, inclusive and helpful – somewhere a twenty-first century candidate will want to work at.

Social Media Employer Brand

Building up your employer brand with Calendar Sync

Creating an engaged and informed candidate experience benefits your company in both the long and short term. It helps to attract and keep the best talent, as well as improving the likelihood that unsuccessful candidates will reapply in the future.

When employees are engaged, they feel valued and are more likely to speak positively about your brand. Whether positive comments are shared online or offline, they help to improve your employer brand and in turn attract the best talent that will help your company grow.


Source: How to build a strong employer brand | The Cronofy Blog

Whatever you do do It with all your heart

How to Improve the Candidate Experience

Whatever you do do it with all your heart

Picture the scene: you’ve just started hiring for a new role and have received more applications than you can answer in a week. There’s hundreds of CVs to read, sort through, and shortlist, then you need to contact everyone and let them know if they’ve been successful. How do you find the time to do everything?

Chances are, you won’t.

Most companies only respond to candidates that have progressed to the next stage of the hiring process. Everyone else stays in the dark. Eventually, they’ll just have to assume they were unsuccessful.

Good communication between companies and candidates is imperative. Even if candidates don’t go on to become an employee, keeping them engaged and informed is crucial to creating a positive experience and building a strong employer brand. If the application process is complicated or opaque, candidates are less likely to apply for future positions and will share their negative experience with their social circles. This may, in turn, negatively affect the company’s brand image, as well as their image as an employer.

According to a study sponsored by ZenDesk, there’s a 95% chance that customers will share a negative experience with their social circle.

Candidate Experience. Chatting.

Many of these candidates could go on to become customers, or may already be customers. A negative experience could put them off your company or product.

In 2014, 18% of Virgin Media job applicants subscribed to their services. However, after experiencing a poor hiring process, 7,500 of those applicants cancelled their subscriptions and went to a competitor. The company lost out on £4.4m in revenue.

A complicated application process, not responding to unsuccessful candidates, and a long-winded hiring process are just some of the things that can lead to a negative candidate experience.

While it’s important to find the right candidate for a job, it’s also worth remembering that candidates are interviewing the company as much as the company is interviewing them.

Candidates want a simple, informed experience because that kind of transparency reflects the company’s culture and the kind of place they could be working in.

If the process is opaque, overcomplicated, or makes them unhappy, they may not accept a job offer even if you think they’re a great fit for the role.

When a company invests in a positive candidate experience, they can
improve the quality of their hires by as much as 70%. When we know how much growth is linked to talent acquisition that’s reason enough to invest in building a strong and engaging employer brand.

However, it can be difficult for busy hiring managers to find time to reply to everyone. When there’s already the responsibility of selecting CVs and organising interviews, it leaves little time to connect with every candidate.

The rise of HR tech

Hiring managers in large companies spend an average of 26 days trying to find each new hire, which means they need to spend their time wisely. The more time they spend trying to find the right person for the job, the more challenges this creates for the team around them—they not only have to fill in for the empty role, but also for the hiring manager. This creates greater pressure on employees and increases their stress levels, which can lead to long-term sick leave or a higher staff turnover.

The progresses in HR tech have already allowed hiring managers to shorten the hiring process: chatbots can be set up to answer candidate queries; AIs can scan CVs and help shortlist candidates, and Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) can help to manage large volumes of applications and candidates.

Candidate Experience

Creating a positive candidate experience

Maintaining a connection with candidates right from the start creates a relationship that can be cultivated even if the candidate is unsuccessful. Those that aren’t a good fit right now might be in a couple of years, or they may be perfect for another department. Should they feel negatively about the application process, they’re less likely to re-apply for the same role or consider a different department.

A negative candidate experience means that companies lose out on talent and may end up helping their competition.

Talent acquisition is often the difference between a growing business and a stalling one.

It’s not just about responding to queries and ensuring that your ATS is mobile-friendly, though.

One of the most time-consuming processes of hiring is finding a time when a candidate and interview panel are free. The more candidates and interviewers there are, the longer this process takes. However, this process can be automated, saving the hiring manager a great deal of time.

Candidate Engagement Time

Save time with automated real-time interview scheduling

In order to streamline the interview scheduling process, ATS providers can add calendar sync to their products in order to build smart scheduling feature that allow users to access the real-time availability of people both inside and outside the organisation.

When an ATS is integrated with a company’s calendar domain, hiring managers don’t need to chase an interview panel to find when they’re available. The hiring manage can email candidates with the real-time availability of the interviewers to find a time that works for everyone. This not only reduces double-bookings but can also help to minimise the number of latecomers or no-shows.

If anyone becomes unavailable, the ATS can be notified and an email can be sent to organise a new time for everyone to meet—there’s no need to rely on long email conversations or more phone calls.

The better the experience a candidate goes through when applying for a job, the more likely they are to speak positively of the company, even if they don’t get the role. This improves the company’s image and helps attract more top talent, and in doing so, allows the company to grow faster.

About the Author:

Kristina Proffitt

Kristina Proffitt is a content marketer at Cronofy, the unified Calendar API. Cronofy helps companies to connect their software to users’ calendars whatever calendar service they use. When she’s not writing about APIs or HR tech, she shares her latest discoveries and the occasional GIF on Twitter.

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Source: How to improve the candidate experience | Cronofy Blog