5 Stress Management Tips to Avoid Employee Burnout

17/05/2018

Stress in the workplace is common and it is usually expected especially if your employees have to keep up with a deadline and render more hours just to get the work done on time. However, if this has become an everyday thing, the work environment could prove to be toxic and overall unhealthy.

Constant stress and overwork can eventually lead to a burnout, and this is not good for both the employee and the company itself. When employees are burnt out, they will have no room to think of new ways to improve their craft or even think about how to streamline office processes – all they will ever worry about is how and when to get the job done fast.

The office will be a constant humdrum of beating deadlines and rendering the same, mediocre output. Creativity and innovation will be placed in the backseat. Worse, the stress will eventually take a toll on your employees. Productivity and contentment in the workplace will go down, and this will reflect badly on the company culture and performance.

To ensure that your employees remain productive and happy, it is best to find ways on how to manage stress in the workplace. It could be as simple as allocating an hour for yoga and exercise once a week or encouraging them to take a wellness leave once in a while. Below are five more tips that you can follow:

1. Provide more work flexibility

Allow your employees to get out from the four walls of their office cubicle and work from home or somewhere else. You can implement this once a week (like “Work from Home Fridays”) or only just half a day every once a week.

Allowing them to go out and work at home or in a cafe can give them a much needed creative boost and lessen their stress levels significantly – because work environment and ambiance are also huge factors of that.

You may also allow flexible working hours. Like employees can come in at a later hour as long as they can still punch in the required work hours, or even leave early if they have no other pending tasks for the day. This allows them to have more time to relax, unwind and recharge before going back to the daily grind by the next day. It also allows them to avoid the rush hour, where their stress levels can go high even without reaching the office yet.

2. Maintain strict work hours

Work hours should still be consistent, and once the employee punches out or logs off, avoid calling, texting or emailing them about work-related stuff. Allow your employees to completely zone out from anything work-related until they log in again on the next working day.

Constantly bugging your employees about work, even while they are already at home or out on a vacation will certainly burn them out quickly. The stress and worry can certainly ruin a rather relaxing evening at home or a once in a lifetime family occasion. Employees will feel trapped with all the revolving workload, and prevent them from having a good work-life balance.

3. Review your processes and streamline it

One of the sources of stress in the workplace are unclear job positions, tasks and processes. When some people on the team don’t know who’s going to work on which, then there is an internal problem. When employees don’t also know where to go when they have issues and clarifications, then there is certainly an organizational problem.

You have to review and reorganize your corporate structure and streamline work processes whenever possible. Make sure each person on the team knows what their actual responsibilities are, and that they have a set of tasks that are expected from them to be done each day/week/month.

Related reading: 7 Tools For More Productive Collaboration in the Workplace

With a clear and organized structure and work instructions, employees can easily focus on the stuff that are their main priorities and focus on delivering them according to the pace they are most confident with – not just randomly finish whatever task that is handed to them at the last minute.

4. Promote a healthy lifestyle

Aside from getting in good shape, exercising can do wonders for one’s mental health. It can improve overall mood since it boosts serotonin levels on the brain (which helps alleviate depression) and can give an extra energy to a rather slow day at the office. Some offices now offer a mini gym – or at the very least a yoga corner for that much needed stretching and meditative break in the office.

Exercises can help employees relieve stress and frustration at work, and it could help if they don’t need to go far just to have space for such activity. Nap rooms are also great – because aside from exercise, substantial amounts of rest is also part of a healthy lifestyle. Google for example allot a place for employees to take a nap in.

5. Encourage open communication

Last but not the least, encouraging your employees to voice out their concerns with the company can help lessen the stress they experience at work. Employees can take comfort in the fact that someone in the company cares about them, and that they can voice out their concerns without fear of retaliation. However, always remember that communication is a two-way street. Aside from letting them voice their concerns freely, make sure that you actually listen – and take action whenever necessary.

Of course, another obvious tip is to avoid creating unreasonable expectations and deadlines for your employees. Too much pressure is the last thing any employee needs, for this will not only increase stress, but will also push them to do mediocre work instead (just to meet the required deadline). So be reasonable. Allow them some fair time to craft quality work, but make sure they don’t have too much time to slack off as well.

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This a guest post by Gemma Reeves of FindMyWorkspace. The views expressed here are of the author’s, and Zegal may not necessarily subscribe to them. You, too, are invited to share your point of view. Learn more about guest blogging for Zegal here.

Author Bio

Gemma Reeves is a seasoned writer who enjoys creating helpful articles and interesting stories. She has worked with several clients across different industries such as advertising, online marketing, technology, healthcare, family matters, and more. She is also an aspiring entrepreneur who is engaged in assisting other aspiring entrepreneurs in finding the best office space for their business.

Check out her company here: FindMyWorkspace

Managing Payroll In A Merger Or Acquisition

Mergers and acquisitions are part and parcel of the business world. However, as with all mergers and acquisitions, this can then have significant impact on internal processes.

While most of the responsibilities lies on the top management to ensure a smooth transition with the organizational changes, the HR department also has a key role to ensure that employees are kept up to date with the changes as well.

In addition to the human aspect of mergers and acquisitions, payroll can also have a major impact on how success a merger or acquisition will eventually turn out in the long run. The key here is to ensure that any changes in payroll should be in line with organisational changes. Here are some ways to execute payroll during a merger or acquisition without overlooking due diligence.

1. Assess the payroll situation

A merger or acquisition need not be a messy or complicated affair. Instead, understand how the payroll process is like for the organisations involved. There could be a chance that the organisations involved might be using the same payroll software. Additionally, with the advancement of payroll tools and cloud-based payroll software, merging employees’ data or payroll information together might not seem as nightmarish as before.

2. Have a payroll execution plan

Tasks will not be completed without a timeline in place. Ensure that there is a payroll execution plan, with specific deadlines and timeframe to achieve a certain task at each time. At the same time, ensure that everyone involved in the payroll execution or migration plan is aware of these timelines.

3. Have a payroll representative on the M&A team

The last thing you want is to surprise the organisations involved in terms of the management of payroll processes or number of payroll vendors. Having a payroll representative in the merger and acquisition team is a great way to ensure that the organisations involved are aware of the potential costs involved as well as the need to manage the expectations and contracts with these external vendors.

4. Back up every payroll data

Given that payroll data will be migrated and merged, it is imperative for every data to be backed up before integrating it with the involved organisations. Alternatively, organisations can engage external vendors to help with the data integration, to ensure that important and confidential payroll information is not lost. 

5. Keep the employees informed

The last thing that organisations should do is to keep employees in the dark. After all, mergers and acquisitions are likely to impact employees the most and there are bound to be a lot of insecurities within the organisation. Help the management team to ensure a smooth transition by keep employees informed on successful milestones, regardless of whether they are minor or major ones. This can help to build confidence and trust within the employees at the same time.

Mergers and acquisitions are bound to create tension and certainty within the organisation. Additionally, with the integration of multiple processes ongoing at the same time, due diligence and compliance issues may be overlooked at certain times. Given that payroll is also a crucial part of the integration process, it is imperative to have a plan in place to ensure a smooth transition and contribute to the organisational growth in the long run.

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This a guest post by RenQun Huang of Gpayroll. The views expressed here are of the author’s, and Zegal may not necessarily subscribe to them. You, too, are invited to share your point of view. Learn more about guest blogging for Zegal here.

About Gpayroll

Gpayroll is an easy to use, self-run online payroll service that will redefine and revolutionize the payroll industry. Its intuitive and automated system will help business owners focus on their core business without the hassle of managing payroll.

Is AI Taking Over Payroll?

15/05/2018

Payroll is indisputably the most data-intensive aspect of Human Resources (HR). Every payroll cycle demands hundred percent accuracy, timeliness and seamless coordination of every payroll process – from updating employee bank records and salary data to disbursement of wages to employees.

This has driven many organisations to invest in HR technology solutions, automating mundane and administrative HR tasks such as salary calculations and recording employees’ working hours through punch cards. Today, payroll software are capable of managing complex HR processes such as collating the organisation’s payroll data, calculating the correct wages for each employees including tax deductions and overtime as well as generate detailed payroll reports for analysis.

While there are several facets of HR that would still require a human interface, there are still process automation in other HR areas such as HR analytics and compensation and benefits. Essentially, automation and analytics have transformed HR from an administrative facilitator to a strategic business partner within the organisation.

Following automation and analytics of HR processes, robots – or Artificial Intelligence (AI) – are considered the future of HR. As mentioned by Infosys’ executive vice-president and head, HR, Richard Lobo, AI is “slowly making inroads into HR and one of the forerunners are chatbots”. Broadly defined, chatbots are programmed to conduct online conversations with users via auditory or textual methods for various purposes including customer service helpdesk or information acquisition.

In the HR context, these chatbots are ideal forms of technology that serves to provide a better employee experience. These chatbots can help address basic employee HR requests instead of having a physical HR personnel present, allowing the HR department to save on time and resources.

On the other hand, there are rising concerns that AI might very well take over the entire payroll process. According to a white paper title The Future of Employment: How Susceptible Are Jobs To Computerisation?, the probability of payroll and timekeeping jobs being computerized is a high 97 percent.

While technology is suited to circumstances whereby the inputs and outputs are known and clear, there are two distinct aspects that AI is completely unsuited to – unexpected and data.

Technology, regardless of how sophisticated and brilliantly designed, will not be able to respond well to sudden changes and spikes in demand. Humans, on the other hand, have the advantage of responding quickly and adapting to unforeseen circumstances.

For instance, should there be the need for ad-hoc salary payments outside the typical salary cycle, human HR professionals will be able to act outside standard procedures to ensure that the software is able to cater to the unexpected circumstances.

Outputs of payroll software and technology is also heavily reliant on the data provided. Payroll software might have difficulty interpreting any data that is outside of the specified programmed examples.

One example is that wrong payroll entries made by payroll staff into the system will result in employees not being paid accurately or on time. The payroll system is unable to pick up minor errors as such. Human HR professionals, however, are able to interpret payroll data with the context in mind and make appropriate judgement on the validity of the data. Simply put, the payroll software can only identify what is right or wrong – whether the decision fits the context of the situation is ultimately decided by the HR professional.

Finally, one thing that technology lacks is the good old human touch. When employees have queries regarding something sensitive such as payroll, employees will want to talk to a real person. Even sophisticated chatbots cannot replace the “human” element of HR.

Despite growing wariness on the complexity of payroll software, HR professionals should regard it with positivity nonetheless. AI, when well used, can work harmoniously to achieve HR goals for both employees and the organisation.

Start managing your legal needs with Zegal today

This a guest post by RenQun Huang of Gpayroll. The views expressed here are of the author’s, and Zegal may not necessarily subscribe to them. You, too, are invited to share your point of view. Learn more about guest blogging for Zegal here.

About Gpayroll

Gpayroll is an easy to use, self-run online payroll service that will redefine and revolutionize the payroll industry. Its intuitive and automated system will help business owners focus on their core business without the hassle of managing payroll.

4 HR Tool Mistakes That Might Cost You

07/05/2018

As a small business, finding the right HR tools is more challenging than it is for a huge corporation. Unlike large organisations, your small business might lack the necessary capital to invest in more expensive HR resources.

More often than not, many small businesses tend to make costly mistakes when trying to find the right HR tools. If you, as a small business owner, are unsure what to look out for, here are some of these mistakes which you definitely cannot afford to make when choosing your HR tools.

1. Choosing a tool before understanding the implications

Given that technology is constantly evolving, you might find it tough to keep up and test out the plethora of HR tools. However, simply scanning through the various HR tools without really understanding the possible challenges and implications might result in wasted time and money for your business. While there are certainly plenty of fantastic HR tools to choose from, first determine which is your primary HR need – payroll, benefit, compliance or general HR matters. This will help you narrow down your choices before diving deeper into the specifics of each tool.

2. Lowering your security expectations

Employee information is sacred and this simply means that you cannot compromise on the cyber security of your HR system. As most HR systems contain a huge chunk of personal information, there could be significant ramifications should these highly confidential data be leaked out. Therefore, it is crucial to thoroughly vet through the information security protocol of the HR tools before choosing them. Additionally, ensure that the vendor which you have deciding to purchase your HR tool from keeps your personal data in an environment that meets your company’s security standards as well.

3. Dividing your HR information across tools and team

Small businesses tend to be made up of a handful of team members who at time, juggle between multiple roles. This also means that important tasks tend to be split up and shared among co-workers across different departments. While such teamwork is undoubtedly a recipe for success, dividing HR responsibilities in such a way could possibly result in miscommunication. Instead of spreading crucial HR information across various systems, ensure that all your important HR information is stored in one easy-to-find system and have only one or two people dedicating to handling your HR tasks.

4. Choosing tools that cannot grow with the company

Of course, the ultimate aim of every small business is to grow into a large and successful enterprise. At the same time, your HR tools need to be able to grow with your company. Spending time and money to find a HR tool which your company might outgrow in a few short years will only bring your business back to square one. Find a HR tool that include features which allow you to handle more HR information in time to come.

Instead of simply rushing to purchasing the latest or fanciest HR tool, the best way is to spend some time to do your due research. Again, it is best to find determine which aspect of HR does your small business need the most. That way, it would help narrow down your options and save you time and money from looking at countless of HR tools.

Start managing your legal needs with Zegal today

This a guest post by RenQun Huang of Gpayroll. The views expressed here are of the author’s, and Zegal may not necessarily subscribe to them. You, too, are invited to share your point of view. Learn more about guest blogging for Zegal here.

About Gpayroll

Gpayroll is an easy to use, self-run online payroll service that will redefine and revolutionize the payroll industry. Its intuitive and automated system will help business owners focus on their core business without the hassle of managing payroll.

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