The Race for Market Share:
Positioning Your Workforce for Growth
hether your business is producing merchandise, selling a product, or providing a service— whatever your business does to generate revenue—growing your business is important for longevity and survival. Most companies plan for growth, devote hours to developing their strategic plan, and countless more hours implementing to ensure the best possible outcomes. A key component in all business endeavors involves your greatest asset, your employees.
Is your workforce prepared for the growth you want this year? If not, wouldn’t it be nice to have a roadmap to follow as you get your employees on the right path so you can maneuver the peaks and valleys along the way?
Let’s take a look at your current workforce:
- Do they have the knowledge, skills and abilities to step up and move the Company forward? Find out. Assess your current workforce by conducting a Gap Analysis. In other words, does the current performance of your workforce meet the performance levels necessary for your company to grow and thrive in the current marketplace? If not, what plan needs to be put into place to raise the performance standards for the projected growth?
- Provide or make training available to employees. This could include training like: computer skills (MS Excel, PowerPoint, and Word), technology skills, communication skills, or customer service skills.
- Conduct “Stay Interviews”. Find out why your employees are staying with your Company. This is a great retention strategy.
- If your business allows, have a flexible work policy. Policies that are family friendly produce a happier, healthier work environment in most cases.
- Have policies that appeal to the Tech Dependent Millenniums and Generation “Z” workforce, as this is the largest group of people currently entering the workforce.
- Create opportunities for growth within your organization. This allows good employees to become great leaders.
- Encourage employees to network after work and through events like “lunch and learn”.
- Start a mentorship program where workers can sharpen their skills with the help of more seasoned employees.
- Provide feedback and conduct timely performance reviews as an effort to improve future productivity.
- Let your employees know they are valued and respected!
Let’s take a look at your future workforce:
- What’s your business’s recruiting strategy? Do you have one?
- Hiring correctly up front goes a long way in slowing down the revolving door of employees.
- Conduct a Needs Assessment so that you can match applicant skills with Company needs.
- Consider the applicant’s “other characteristics” in determining whether the applicant will be a “good fit” for your Company and the open position.
- Take your time to thoroughly “on-board” the new employee and provide the necessary tools to get the job done.
Can you prepare your workforce for the growth you want this year? Definitely yes! Implementing and applying new strategies mentioned above will start you off in the right direction for success. You need to consider other local resources that are available as well, such as the University of Arkansas, Fort Smith’s Community Outreach programs with the Center for Business and Professional Development, and the Family Enterprise Center.
If your business growth becomes too overwhelming to meet your customer demands consider outsourcing your payroll or human resources to a local team of professionals. It is absolutely impossible for one person to know everything. Outsourcing payroll and workforce development can save a business owner headaches and sleepless nights.
by TAMMY BARTHEL
Tammy S. Barthel has spent more than 30 years in the human resources field. For the past 18 years she has been the Human Resource Director at SPMI in Van Buren, delivering employment solutions to businesses across the U.S. She holds degrees in accounting, human resource development and management. She holds certifications as a Senior Certified Professional and the Society of Human Resources Senior Certified Professional. She is a licensed agent in Arkansas for life and disability insurance.