More companies are expressing concern about how “fast” the business world is moving. There’s a real fear about employees being able to keep up with the pace of change. Today’s reader note is about an aspect of that – working in the past.
Hi! I’ve been following you for a while. Fantastic posts and always applicable! My company has a very ‘outdated’ culture. We pay on the low end, training and professional development opportunities are minimal and our policies translate into “we don’t trust you”. This is making recruitment challenging, especially with the higher level, more senior roles. Any tips for selling a lack-luster culture to candidates without detouring from reality?
First of all, thanks for the kind words about HR Bartender. I really enjoy what I do. There are several pieces to this note and some of them are related, others might not be. For example, I can see how companies that pay on the low end of the pay scale and don’t offer much in terms of professional development have recruiting challenges. I can also see how policies that indirectly say, “We don’t trust our employees.” have retention issues. But I’m not sure how low pay, lack of training and poor management create an “outdated” work environment. The most modern of organizations can be guilty of all of these things.
I do want to address the “outdated” corporate culture. Because the business world is moving so quickly, it can be easy to fall behind and feel “out-of-date”. If you want to make sure you’re staying current with your employees, here are a few things to consider:
Benchmark your compensation and benefits packages. There are a couple ways to do this. First, you can informally benchmark your company against the “Great Place to Work” list and check off things you “do” versus “don’t”. Second, you can conduct a formal benchmark. The Society for Human Resource Management offers benchmarking services. And if you’re in a very specialized industry, your industry association might have benchmarking services as well.
Check out review sites to see what other companies are offering. Review sites like Glassdoor and Great Rated provide information about benefits, work environment and corporate culture. This is a good way to see what companies provide and how employees respond to it. Unique perks like “Bring Your Dog to Work Day” and free popcorn might sound hip and trendy but the value in benefits is what’s being utilized.
Use conferences and networking events to find out about new offerings. Check out the expo hall or sponsor tables at events to find out the latest for your industry. Ask vendors about their company culture. You can learn a lot by chatting with sponsors and exhibitors at conferences and meetings.
Ask your employees what benefits they enjoy the most. Before making any changes, be sure to understand the benefits that employees love and the ones they would be fine with getting rid of. Often an organization thinks they know what employees love and hate because of the compliments and complaints coming into human resources. Truth is, when it’s time to add or delete a benefit, the employees might have a different opinion.
For many reasons, companies need to figure out how to stay current and remain competitive. This includes workplace and culture. But it also means not implementing every trend just because it’s the benefit du jour. Staying current is about listening to the needs of your workforce and balancing them with the needs of the business.
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