There are still many businesses who view employees’ family commitments and responsibilities as being inconveniences that get in the way of achieving business objectives. Obviously business owners/managers’ priorities are around business success, but ensuring your workplace is compatible with the family life of your staff is not just about being nice and supportive, it can have direct business benefits.
Here are just some of the reasons every business should promote a family-friendly environment:
Forward-thinking companies have realised that promoting a family-friendly workplace is a good recruitment tool. Family-friendly benefits and attitudes from their employer are an attractive prospect for many employees, widening the pool of talent available to you when recruiting those key positions. Just think about the proportion of the workforce who are either parents or might have other dependent relatives. That’s a lot of talent you don’t want to miss out on.
It’s not just about finding new employees, it’s also about retaining key talent within your business. If good staff find managing family life with their job difficult, or feel that coming back after family leave is impossible because of an unsupportive workplace, it’s no surprise when they look elsewhere. Replacing good members of staff is expensive, time-consuming and results in lost productivity, lost knowledge and lost experience. Better to keep the good staff you have!
A family-friendly culture isn’t just attractive to prospective job candidates, it can enhance your overall image as a business. A company which is viewed as a good employer in the local community can see wider benefits of this including customer attraction.
Companies who promote flexible working, homeworking, and have a culture which is open to dealing with family emergencies and commitments without penalising employees find a reduced level of sickness absence as a result.
Staff aren’t ‘throwing sickies’ to deal with family problems, medical appointments or an unwell child. Instead they are being upfront with their needs, able to work from home occasionally around these events, make the time up elsewhere, take annual leave or similar, and absence rates go down.
Employees who feel their employer is supportive of family life are happier and more content at work, with higher morale and higher levels of engagement. A supportive working environment generates a lot of goodwill from its staff which can come in very handy during busy times or when it’s all-hands-on-deck to meet a big order. Happier teams also work better together, reducing niggles or disputes.
Productivity and performance improvements
And in turn, employees who are happy and engaged in the workplace perform better and are more productive, having a bottom-line positive effect for their employer. Performance problems are less common as people go the extra mile and enjoy their job, and teams working well together perform to a higher level.
If you’re wondering how you can improve your business by putting in place family friendly initiatives, do get in touch.