We’re nearly two years into the pandemic, and many employers are still trying to balance caring for family members with their full-time jobs. Everyone knows parents struggle to find reliable and affordable care for their young children, but caregiving can take many forms, including parents, elderly or disabled extended family members, and special needs children who may require care into adulthood. This need to care for the family causes stress and can distract caregiving employees from their work responsibilities.
How Can Employers Help Struggling Employees?
1. Focus on performance, not presence.
Unless a job requires in-person interaction with customers or colleagues, results are the most important measurement of success on the job. If an employee is reaching their metrics and showing results, worry less about if they are working in the office or from home or late at night or early morning rather than conventional working hours.
2. Connect employees with resources.
Whether it’s access to counselors or an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to give employees someone to talk to, knowing how to take the first step can make a big difference to the employee. You can also provide sources for referrals to assisted living or nursing homes and other adult care resources. At first glance, employers may wonder why they should get involved in these personal matters, but realistically, the less the burden on your employees, the better their on-the-job performance. You’re also likely to see better retention, improved productivity, lower stress, and improved morale.
3. Increase workplace flexibility.
Flextime, working from home, four-day work can go a long way toward helping struggling employees through a tough time. It will lessen stress on the caregiving employee and also help build loyalty with that employee, but also the rest of the staff who will see that they are not just a number to the company. It can boost morale and also attract new employees looking for a company with strong values and a positive work culture.
4. Understand Your Employee’s Pain Points and Provide the Right Solutions
Women are Hit Particularly Hard. They are already paid less than their male counterparts. As caregivers, they are expected to adapt their schedules or handle arrangements much more than men are. They are also more likely to need to leave their jobs entirely. Organizations that make an effort to support these employees report better engagement, performance, and productivity.
5. Encourage an employee network group.
While your support can have a positive impact on the employee and the company culture, some of the most helpful advice can come through peers who have been through a similar situation and may already have resources, strategies and advice. Perhaps more importantly, it gives them an opportunity to vent about a difficult experience. While it is not your place as the employer to run such a group, you can make space to facilitate it. Allow conference rooms to be used for meetings, for example, or welcome announcements, etc. through internal communication channels.
6. Create a welcoming culture.
Employees often hesitate to speak about personal difficulties at work because they don’t want to appear weak or incapable of performing their jobs effectively. Examine your internal culture to determine whether employees feel safe sharing their struggles and know the company will support them. People spend so much of their days at work that they mustn’t feel the need to hide their true selves for 40+ hours per week. Happy, loyal, engaged employees are your company’s best marketing.
Looking For Ways to Keep Your Employees Happy and Productive?
Your staffing partner sees the ups and downs every company faces and can help you develop effective solutions to resolve them. Whether that means temporary employees to relieve some of the burden on your team or proven leaders who can get the most out of your team firm Contact The Panther Group today for assistance.
Call 855-899-JOBS (5627)