What is a sustainable workforce?
A sustainable workforce is one where the work environment supports employee wellbeing. Their skills and energies are not overused, and they don’t have to face excessively high workload.
According to the Global Workforce Study, Towers Watson found that companies with the highest sustainable workforces had an average annual operating margin of 27%. Those with low employee engagement scores recorded operating margins under 10%. Concentrating on developing a sustainable workforce is a must if a company strives to connect and produce results successfully. Sustainability commences with the people who work behind the scenes.
4 Ways to Build a Sustainable Workforce
1. Optimise recruitment
Optimising recruitment processes has a significant impact on forming a sustainable workforce for the company. Looking for staff who can fulfil all of the company’s responsibilities and requirements continue to be a challenge for all companies. Therefore, the general manager has responsibilities for overseeing hiring and constructing a detailed recruitment procedure with clear job descriptions. This action will help avoid unexpected mistakes and eliminate unqualified candidates. To reduce recruitment costs, companies should utilise all the hiring networks by associating with universities and using social media. Besides, use the word-of-mouth method and tell your employees, colleagues, and friends about a vacancy.
(Related: 9 Effective Strategies to Boost Employee Retention)
Last but not least, check whether the candidates are serious and committed to the role. Building a sustainable workforce is all about making commitments. You don’t want to hire an employee who switches careers or jobs frequently, just to get a higher salary. Managers should also check the candidate’s previous job duration to see whether they are changing jobs frequently.
2. Staff retention and loyalty
Staff loyalty has a close connection with their job satisfaction. Workers will engage and commit to their career if their functions and career path are demonstrated in the company. To foster employee loyalty, leaders need to provide employees with tools that allow them to quickly find and share the solutions and contribute to the company’s knowledge base. Also, part of obtaining an employee’s loyalty shows that you trust them to complete their tasks. Thus, set achievable objectives, ensure employees have the abilities and resources to complete the tasks. Then, give feedback to encourage high performing staff. Lastly, rewards can be strong loyalty builders, but they need to be appropriate to the results or else they’ll give impressions of unfairness.
3. Effective leadership
Leaders must identify skill sets each team member possesses. This will give each team member a chance to perform their competencies at their best. Next, provide staff with authority and encourage them to take control of their specialties. The consolidation of trust and responsibility will help build healthy relationships in the workplace. Training and mentoring is one of the most fundamental management skills because it creates job orientation for employees. As a result, the staff will have a thorough understanding of their jobs to obtain working skills with a cooperative attitude.
According to the Harvard Business Review, leaders need to be seen as ‘one of us’. Staff tend to trust their leaders when leaders can both lead and follow. Leaders can benefit by showing others that they can be followers who are willing to roll up their sleeves and work within the group. Also, positivity boosts employee performance. Showing enthusiasm for your job, and communicating this passion to others, can help enhance performance and employee engagement.
4. Harness Artificial intelligence (AI)
It is naive to think that AI replaces manual work. The potential of AI furnishes both enterprises and employees with an opportunity for a more sustainable workforce. In general, the primary function of AI allows users to process enormous data for various management purposes. Because AI helps people complete repetitive and tedious assignments, employees will have more time to practice and improve their professional skills. The adaptation of AI will be the innovation for the entire system of the organisation. In the general manager’s role, they must attach the importance to learn and research new technologies. Therefore, AI and high technologies are utilised as powerful tools for training staff and building a sustainable workforce.
Real Estate Investor, OSDORO
Bachelor of Applied Finance and Bachelor of Laws, Sydney, Australia.
David has been in real estate business since 2002 and has a passion for South East Asian cross border cooperation.
As an entrepreneur, David has won multiple tech industry awards, including 2019 for Best AI Startup GITEX awards, 2019 Best AI Technology Accathon Capital USA and recipient of the Wharton Innovation Fund Grant. His last startup, Woveon, was a New York VC backed AI enterprise business intelligence company that worked on customer data stitching and analytics of billions of conversations.
David is also the recipient of state and national Australia technology prizes including the PWC Innovation Award and Intel Enterprise Technology awards.