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The New Year signifies a fresh start and an opportunity to make changes and improvements to your business. This is the ideal time for business leaders to start thinking about some of the goals they would like to achieve in 2016 and consider how they can go about realising them.
This is according to Kay Vittee, CEO of Quest Staffing Solutions, South Africa’s leader in customised staffing solutions within the white-collar recruitment industry.
She says, “One of the best places to start is with your staff, they are undoubtedly one of your biggest investments and have a direct impact on every aspect of your business.”
“Attracting and retaining the right people, with the right skills, is essential for attaining your business objectives and ensuring that your organisation is equipped to tackle the challenges of the year ahead. Ultimately, creating an environment where people enjoy working is crucial for both the attraction and retention of employees,” Vittee explains.
Developing and maintaining a workplace where staff can provide management with feedback on their perceptions of the business, as well as insights into areas which may need improving, is a factor which Vittee notes makes staff feel as though their points are not only heard but that action is taken to address their concerns.
Another consideration in this regard is to show staff appreciation. According to the Maritz Reward & Recognition Market Study, more than 42% of employees consider a company’s rewards program when seeking employment.
Vittee adds, “Furthermore, the Globoforce Workforce Mood Tracker report on ‘The Impact of Recognition on Employee Retention’, revealed that 39% of employees feel underappreciated at work and 77% admit that they would work harder if they felt they were better recognised.”
“Offering skills development initiatives could be an additional avenue for creating a desirable workplace for both current and future staff,” suggests Vittee. “In fact, findings from the Kelly Global Workforce Index (KGWI) reveals that employers who invest in training and staff development not only reap productivity benefits but also have a better chance of retaining employees,” she says.
The KGWI highlights that on-the-job experience is identified by 57% of respondents as the most effective means of skills development, ahead of alternatives including further education and training, seminars, professional certification and mentoring.
Vittee notes that internships not only offer recent graduates entry into the workforce but also enable businesses to build and develop much-needed skills required by the South African labour market.
“In addition, businesses that provide internships can select and develop the company’s future talent and have the opportunity to evaluate and screen potential employees prior to making a full‐time position offer, which leads to financial savings. Employers have reported converting more than half of eligible interns into full‐time hires. What’s more, if hired in a permanent position, previous interns assimilate faster to their new roles and have shorter learning curves than external hires.”
“By ensuring that you make the workplace an environment of recognition, reward and growth for employees, there is much that can be achieved,” concludes Vittee.