Last May, the unemployment rate in Canada was down to 5.4% – the lowest in nearly half a decade. While this is great news for the Canadian economy, it also means the job market is becoming increasingly competitive.
With such a low unemployment rate and a hyper-mobile workforce, companies looking to hire will need to find creative ways to attract the top talent in their respective industries. While higher wages are a common way to entice employees, salary alone can only do so much. Positive management culture, opportunities for growth and employee benefits that match their values are all very important factors for Millennials on the job market.
This is why more and more HR departments are turning to innovative, technologically-driven Human Resources solutions and employee benefits packages that will attract younger leaders with room to grow, helping them stay physically and mentally healthy.
HUMAN RESOURCES, EMPLOYEE WELLNESS AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY - A POWER TRIO
Recently, Shane Sabatino, President of TELUS Employer Solutions (part of the Telus Health & Payment Solutions family along with Medisys Health Group) wrote an article explaining why HR and IT work so well together. Evidently, IT is changing the face of Human Resources as companies move away from reactionary benefits and focus more on preventative wellness programs.
By uniting HR, IT and employee wellness/benefits, companies can:
- Reduce staff turnover by proactively caring for employee health and wellness
- Increase buy-in by creating a strong company culture
- Attract the next generation of leaders by meeting their current specific needs
- Move toward a more efficient model by improving HR/employee relations
1. REDUCE TURNOVER BY PROACTIVELY CARING FOR EMPLOYEE HEALTH AND WELLNESS
Employing the best people begins with recruitment, but it doesn’t stop here. According to Shane Sabatino, retaining a good employee is just as difficult as recruiting one. It’s a big job to keep an employee engaged and effective at their job, especially if there’s no chance of moving upward.
Benefit programs that offer preventative health tools such as virtual care allow employees to easily deal with physical and mental health concerns before they become serious problems, thereby reducing burn out, employee turnover and their related costs to the company.
2. INCREASE BUY-IN BY CREATING A STRONG COMPANY CULTURE
A strong company culture starts with maintaining values and goals your employees can believe in and share with fellow workers. This way, employees feel that they are part of something of value rather than just ‘putting in their time’, which motivates them to fully engage with their work and co-workers.
Creating a meaningful company culture requires more than just team-building exercises and a vision statement. Group activities like wellness programs can be effective tools to build an employee-centered culture, while using IT solutions to promote easy access to benefits programs shows employees that the company listens and cares for their health and wellness.
3. ATTRACT THE NEXT GENERATION OF LEADERS BY MEETING THEIR CURRENT, SPECIFIC NEEDS
The benefits packages and HR of the past do not meet the needs of the next generation of leaders. Today, people can easily access a variety of services online on the internet or by using mobile apps, and they expect the same level of access to information from their employer’s HR department and employee wellness benefits. Resistance by employers to adopt these widely used information channels frequently cause friction and annoyance with younger employees, who become frustrated by the inefficiency of what they see as out-of-date methods.
When HR and IT teams are in step with current trends, companies can take advantage of a host of technology-driven tools that give employees the freedom and flexibility they are looking for. Benefits like telecommuting and virtual care relieve pressure on members of the Sandwich Generation who have to care for both children and elderly parents. The mobility and accessibility afforded by such solutions also allow technology-minded Millennials to feel at home in the way they engage with their benefits program.
4. MOVE TOWARDS A MORE EFFICIENT MODEL BY IMPROVING HR/EMPLOYEE RELATIONS
Requiring employees to fill out form after form can make them feel like they have to fight to get the benefits they were promised, which can make the employer seem like an enemy rather than a helpful supporter. Waiting for days to get a response to an email can make workers feel undervalued, leading them to look elsewhere for appreciation and respect.
By letting your HR team fully embrace IT as the future of people management, you give them the tools to communicate freely with employees and allowing them to build real relationships with workers who are used to, and expect, rapid and efficient communication.
‘THE FUTURE IS FRIENDLY’ WITH INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
Most Millennials rely on technology to do things many people would have been uncomfortable with just a few years ago. From online dating to online banking, the world of IT is quickly moving to encompass the lives of most people in the developed world.
Building a progressive company culture by adopting current technology trends to serve the needs of a younger generation of employees is a smart move in today’s competitive job market. Employers realize that speeding up their technological intake has become a must if they want to attract and retain top talent, a trend that shows no signs of slowing down.
To read more inspiring articles about HR trends and learn how TELUS Employer Solutions can support you with talent management, HRIS applications, business processes and more, visit telus.com/employersolutions.