How Happier Workplaces Create Better Employees

Standard, plain and dull. Is that how you would describe your office? If you’re nodding your head, you aren’t alone. Standard, plain and dull topped the list of how employees described their office in the Staples Business Advantage 2016 Workplace Index survey. Fun, engaging and motivating were among the bottom responses. This begs the question: are our current office structures meeting the wants and needs of employees?

While the office isn’t necessarily a place to be having the time of your life (it’s still a place of business, after all), a little laughter and office comradery can help increase motivation, employee engagement, and help to increase employee retention. We spend the majority of our waking hours in the office, so it should be a space we strive to make enjoyable so that employees come to work each day with a positive and energized attitude.

Of course there is a fine line between having fun and focusing on the bottom line, but finding the balance might be easier than you think.  Throwing a company carnival might not be in the budget, but simple additions to the workday to boost employee morale don’t have to be big, costly gestures.

Fast Company gives us a list of easy ways to add a little bit of fun to the office, like bringing a pet to work, decorating your cubicle (see our Pinterest board for inspiration), or starting a group exercise club.

There are of course certain industries or workplace scenarios where bringing workers together for a group activity isn’t a feasible or easy task. Celebrating with your employees is great, but simply celebrating your employees through recognition and praise can lead to the same end results: increased motivation and productivity.  Employee engagement levels are almost three times higher when they receive recognition. So if you don’t have one already, now might be a good time to look into an employee recognition program.

Aside from an engaging, motivating and fun workplace, what else are employees looking for from the workplace in 2016? Find out from the 2016 Workplace Index report. Download the full report here.

Canadian Workers Continue to Face Office Stress and Burnout

Do you leave the office at the end of the day feeling satisfied and productive? Or stressed and burnt out? If you’re like most Canadians, you’re feeling a little from both sides of the coin. According to our second annual Workplace Index survey, Canadian workers are reporting that the office is the most productive place to get work done, but is also contributing to stress and burnout.

Almost 70% of Canadian office workers and managers report working more than 40 hours a week, and the majority consider the office the most productive place to get work done. In an effort to improve stress and overall morale, employers need to take action to ensure the workplace remains an inspiring and motivating environment.

Forty-three per cent of Canadians say they’re working longer hours simply to catch up on work they couldn’t tackle during an eight-hour day, with 22% working 11 hours or more per day. That workload is taking a toll.

Consider:

  • 68% of Canadians say their workplace has contributed to stress
  • More than one-quarter of Canadians (27%) cite the volume of their work as the number one stressor in their workplace
  • One in five Canadian respondents (19%) has taken a workplace stress-related leave of absence

“The Staples Business Advantage Workplace Index provides an important look at the state of the workplace and what Canadians want and need from their employers,” said Michael Zahra, President, Staples Business Advantage Canada. “Based on the results, it is evident that Canadian employees are working long hours just to keep up with their volume of work. It is the responsibility of employers to therefore provide an inclusive, welcoming environment that boosts employee productivity, increases happiness and positively impacts the bottom line.”

The Staples Business Advantage Workplace Index is a comprehensive study involving office workers and business decision makers in Canada to help companies meet their recruitment, retention and engagement goals.

Over the next few months, we’ll explore the Workplace Index survey and share key findings and insights through a series of posts. To get full access now, you can download the complete report here.

 

 

 

 

How Safe Is Your Facility?

Compare your workplace with these workplace health statistics.

The top 3 issues in the workplace involved employers failing to1:

  1. Keep floors and other work surfaces free of hazards and accumulations of refuse, snow or ice
  2. Maintain equipment, materials and protective devices in good condition
  3. Provide mandatory general awareness health and safety training to workers and supervisors

Take a look at the infographic below for more stats on workplace safety:

Facility-capture

Sources:
1 Ontario Ministry of Labour
2 Staples Advantage Survey
3 Canadian Community Health Survey 2013
4 Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada (AWCBC)
5 Conference Board of Canada