One of the biggest challenges facing a manager in today's workforce is how to increase productivity and improve attendance. The old-fashioned school of thought on employee attendance is that it is mandatory and that it is more a matter of enforcing compliance than it is encouraging participation. However, given the changes in a workforce where we are seeing so much work being completed remotely with only management attending a centralized workplace, this is a case where it may be a time to rely a little more on the carrot and less on the stick.
Dealing with attendance problems one at a time can make you feel like you are plugging leaks with your fingers only to have another one immediately spring up.The goal of any manager who deals with attendance issues should be improving not just attendance, but also productivity, morale, and retention. The workplace can be a stressful place and even the hardiest individuals are vulnerable to burnout. Instead of focusing on attendance as a disciplinary problem, repackage perfect attendance as an incentive that will lead to better things.
Incentivize With An Employee Reward System
The power of incentivization to foster positive behaviors is nothing new. Many companies rely on production-based bonuses in order to ensure excellence in the workplace. Bringing the power of incentivization to your workplace doesn't need to come in the form of pure financial remuneration, though. One method for improving attendance is a very simple one: an employee reward system that distributes something of value to those who show excellence in punching in on time.
An effective employee reward system can provide employees with a variety of incentives to make punching into work first thing in the morning something to be excited about rather than something to dread.
Common incentives that you can offer to high-performing attendees include, but are not restricted to:
Recognition for accomplishment similar to employee of the month status
Access to amenities reserved for high-performing attendees
Tickets to sporting or entertainment events
Front-of-the-line status when it comes to requesting vacation time or leave
You may have seen fierce competition among your employees for a variety of reasons - work-related or otherwise - and wondered how you could channel that passion into improving workplace attendance. The rewards dispensed by the reward system need to be something that is thought about by each employee on a daily basis. Having an online leaderboard so that employees can see where they stand can help to stoke these competitive fires. You may think of introducing head-to-head matchups or tie-breakers into the scenarios, such as attendance on sunny days or high-volume work days, to spice things up and get your workers as focused on attendance as they are on their fantasy sports league.
It may useful to provide a variety of rewards at different levels, so someone who has had a bad stretch of attendance for any reason can still hope to participate in the challenge in a productive way. This will help keep people focused on future attendance rather than discouraged based on that of previous weeks or months. The ways in which you can administer a rewards system that is both effective in promoting attendance and in making the workplace a little more fun are limited only by your imagination.
The most important thing is to use this new system as an engine of encouragement rather than a punitive measure. Increasing the level of attendance is the goal, but if it is done correctly you will find that the system will also boost the morale of individuals and productivity of the workplace as a whole.