By: Shellie Haroski, Senior HR Consultant
As we near the end of 2022, it’s important to proactively think ahead to 2023, while also focusing on finishing out the year strong. From year-end performance reviews to budgeting for the new year, there is a lot to be done. To help you think through best practices for a transition to the new year, I have worked with our HR Consulting team to compile a list of considerations to prioritize.
1. Keep your focus on employee engagement and retention.
With mounting priorities in Q4, employee engagement may fall off an HR team’s radar, but now more than ever it is crucial to maintain attention on your employees and focus on retention. When you consider that in 2022, the overall cost of voluntary employee turnover amounted to over $1 trillion, and according to Hundred5.com, the average company loses between 1% – 2.5% total revenue on time it takes to bring a new hire up to speed, you can see the importance of making sure your employees are engaged.
The end of the year is a great time to complete an employee engagement survey to evaluate the health of your organization, understand opportunities for improvement, and identify any potential risk factors. This helps you to capitalize and celebrate things that are going well and to understand what changes may be needed to keep your workforce engaged.
Completing a survey like this also communicates to your employees that you value their opinion and their contributions to your company. It gives employees an opportunity to share thoughts around the work environment, professional development, career progression, what a career path might look like, benefits, and more. Knowing this information allows you to help prioritize your efforts to employee needs and expectations so that their experience continues to be a positive one.
2. Adjust to the current workforce model.
As you think about employee engagement, you should also consider how you adapt to the current workforce style, and right now, that is increasingly becoming a remote or hybrid workforce. Be sure to equip your management team to supervise well remotely. As the workforce shifts, management styles may also need to adjust.
In previous years, managers had primarily managed by visibility, meaning that it was assumed that if you were at work, then you were getting your work done. While this wasn’t always an accurate reflection of productivity, it becomes even less of a feasible way to measure productivity as we now have to think about ensuring remote employees are performing from home. To effectively manage your remote workforce, we recommend defining your key performance indicators for each job and set measurable goals for employees. Make sure to share those with the employee, and then you will be able to visibly track performance and increase employee productivity and accountability.
3. Focus on development.
End of the year is a key time for completing performance reviews and setting goals for the new year. During this planning process, make sure that you are thinking about your team’s professional development, not just for individual contributors, but also mid-level manager and your leadership team.
For all employees – remote or in-person – it’s also a great time to think about growth & professional development. Do you have a leadership training program or a way for leaders to continue building their skills? We have seen an uptick in desire and need for managers to receive this kind of training. Have you equipped your management team with the right resources to lead well? Think about growth for your employees for 2023 and how you can help them achieve that. Also be sure to provide opportunities for individual contributors to expand skillsets and move up and be intentional about setting out career paths for your team so they understand how they can grow within your company.
Bonus tip: as you think about professional development resources and management, also consider work life balance. What mental health resources are you providing? It is now becoming an industry-standard to offer these resources, so it is critical to stay up to date on what is available. We also find that when mental health is being talked about from the leadership level and resources are provided, it creates an environment where it is healthy and encouraged to have conversations around mental health and work life balance.
4. Market yourself for the next year.
Everyone knows it is still a candidate’s market, so as you plan for 2023 make sure you have a targeted approach for your recruitment strategies. Think about the employees you need to add to your team. What skills do you need to build your team?
Also consider your company culture: establish and be confident in who you are as a company so you can go to market and attract candidates. Your employee engagement survey may help you define your current culture and provide data points that can be shared with potential candidates. Think about your employer brand and how you can articulate your culture and benefits – why would someone want to work at your company? How can you best market your culture to your target audience before they apply or interview for a job? Do any changes need to be made for the next year?
5. And of course, don’t forget compliance!
There are always typical HR to-do list items to consider as you close out a calendar year and transition to a new year. We’ve pulled together the following items that we’d recommend HR teams review annually. Sit down with your team and conduct a “mini-HR audit” to ensure your policies are not only up to date with changes in regulation or law, but also in line with your company culture and the current market conditions. We’d recommend a review of the following:
- Employee Handbook
- Company Code of Ethics
- Job Descriptions and FLSA classifications
- W2 Forms
- OSHA Compliance
- Compliance with benefits requirements
- EEOC Posting requirements (Updated Poster as of 10/2022)
We understand there is a lot to be done, so our HR consulting team is here to help you if you need assistance. From employee engagement to leadership development, and even handbook development and compliance updates, we provide flexible and scalable solutions for all kinds of companies. Please reach out to our team if you’d like to learn more or visit our website.