75% of workers will stay with an organization longer if their employer listens to and addresses their concerns1. If you’re managing human resources (HR) as a business owner, you can implement strong HR practices to help reduce employee turnover, seek and attract better talent, and increase productivity per employee2.
Human Resources Management (HRM) covers everything from legal compliance and payroll to creating a safe, healthy, and productive workplace for employees. This is not an easy feat when managing HR as a business owner, as you have many other responsibilities.
Why Should You Implement Strong HR Practices As A Business Owner?
We took a look at our data for businesses with less than 75 employees to learn who in the company is managing HR. We found that 95% of businesses of this size don’t have a designated HR team*.
In this month’s post, we’ll focus on managing HR as a business owner and how employee happiness can contribute to your business objectives and company mission.
How to Support Your Employees When Managing HR As A Business Owner
Define Your Culture
You might think that “company culture” only applies to tech companies with a massive HR budget, but creating a positive company culture starts with the business owner and is important regardless of company size. Culture defines an employees’ experience at your company. It consists of many factors, such as work environment, organizational values, and business goals3. A healthy culture empowers its employees to be a part of a safe and inclusive environment that they enjoy working in every day.
Questions to consider when defining your culture:
- What are your core values? Defining company values allows you to maintain focus as your business grows and ensures employees are working towards a common goal.
- Are you planning to hire? Strong company culture can help you recruit better talent. When an employee feels taken care of by their employer, they are more likely to refer people to apply. Employee referrals tend to make better hires and stay longer at an organization over candidates sourced through any other recruiting technique4.
- How can you keep employees and reduce turnover? Companies with a positive company culture have a 13.9% turnover rate compared to 48.4% for companies that don’t. If an employee fits the company culture, they’re more likely to enjoy their time in the workplace.
Practice Open Communication
It’s easy to make quick decisions about your business without engaging employees in the process. Often, high-level business decisions are made by management but the effects are felt by employees. The next time you’re making a company-wide decision—large or small—consider asking your employees what they think. When you are managing HR as a business owner, including your employees in decisions will establish trust and create an inclusive workplace for all.
Tips to help you practice open communication with your employees:
- Hold a monthly meeting that discusses company goals, changes, and updates, and allows employees to ask questions and give feedback.
- Give employees notice when a change is coming. Giving plenty of notice for change can be difficult for small businesses with a lean operation. Try your best to provide as much notice as possible. For high-impact changes—like installing a new point of sale system—consider giving 3 – 6 months notice. Try giving at least a couple week’s notice for smaller changes, like scheduling conflicts.
- Conduct regular surveys to get a better understanding of your employees’ pain points, desires, and overall satisfaction in the workplace. Surveys are a great way to give employees a voice5.
Be Present For Your Team
Your employees are people just like you. They have kids in school, family to care for, and real-life concerns that sometimes conflict with work. Managing HR as a business owner, you should be available to your employees should they need your support. Once you’ve carved out time in both your schedules, make sure your mind is present, too. Clear your desktop, relocate to a coffee shop—give complete focus to your employee. Employees who feel valued and appreciated are more likely to stay with you longer and be more productive at work6.
Tips for being physically available and mentally present for your employees:
- Schedule weekly or monthly one-on-one meetings with direct reports to allow them to talk openly about any work-related interpersonal challenges they’re facing.
- Communicate with empathy by setting aside any distractions and focusing on what your employee has to say. Show them that you are interested in their perspective and their concerns are valid.
- Be flexible and understanding. Do what you can to lighten their workload or help them reprioritize. For example, if your employee is feeling overwhelmed, offer to delegate their work or extend a deadline.
How can technology help you strengthen your relationship with employees?
Technology can help you facilitate things like employee communication, surveys, time-off requests, payroll, and performance reviews. Implementing an online solution for HR administration will make it easier for you to manage HR as a business owner and ensure you’re providing adequate support to your employees.
Below are some online resources that can help you effectively manage HR as a business owner, so you can spend more time to spend developing your employees.
- Hire The Right Fit with Indeed. Indeed helps you find the right fit for your jobs. You can search for resumes and communicate with candidates, and manage your pipeline all from an online dashboard that you can access on desktop or mobile.
- Get Organized with HR Department of One. SHRM curates helpful resources for HR professionals to manage their workloads by providing tools and guidance for your most challenging problems.
- Manage Your Growing Teams with EaseHR. Ease offers a suite of HR tools that make it easier to complete your daily tasks, leaving you with more time to focus on employee success. With EaseHR you can manage and track paid time-off policies, access employee directory, and create customizable employee surveys.
Supporting Your Employees Matters
You can support your employees in many ways—from verbal communication to modern benefits and HR solutions that make it easier for them to make healthy decisions for them and their families. Regardless of which tactics you implement in your business, remember that a happy employee is a productive one. Managing HR as a business owner, you have all the tools you need to make that happen.
*Ease data, internal database, March 2019
This post was written by Morgan Seymore, Employer Marketing Manager at Ease. Morgan is a content marketer who is passionate about helping small businesses succeed. Her career has been focused on studying the importance of strong employer branding, trends in job seeker behavior, and building effective corporate communications.