3 Simple and Cost-Effective Ways Nonprofits Can Start Increasing Employee Productivity Today

September 21, 2016・3 mins read
3 Simple and Cost-Effective Ways Nonprofits Can Start Increasing Employee Productivity Today

Nonprofits organizations face many challenges. With limited financial and people-power resources, they frequently are required to do more with less. Finding cost-effective ways to keep their employees engaged and productive is key to any nonprofit organization’s success. 

Whatever the organization’s mission, employees who are more productive are going to be that much better in supporting the nonprofit reaching their goals. Here are three simple, cost-effective ways nonprofits can work to increase productivity in the workplace:

1. Improve employee engagement

Engaged employees are productive employees.  Start by finding out directly from your team what they need from you to become more engaged. This can be done easily and cheaply through a group brainstorming meeting or a free online survey program. Once you are provided this feedback, take steps to implement any measures that work for your organization.  Let your employees know your plan to improve engagement and get their feedback at regular intervals to assess how it’s working.

2. Avoid employee burnout

Encourage your employees to take regular breaks and utilize their vacation time. Employees who take time away from work often have a higher level of productivity in their day-to-day job and are less likely to burn out in the long run. It is a cost-effective strategy that yields big results. Here are a couple of tips to get your employees to step away:

  • Create a vacation or personal time off (PTO) policy that makes sense for your organization. Be sure to not only create the policy but to encourage your team to actually use it.
  •  Set a good example. Like many aspects of the organization, having a good work/life balance requires an example that starts from the top down. Leadership members who do not use their vacation can create the idea within the team that taking time off is frowned upon. 
  • Encourage your team to take small breaks throughout the day. Even if they are, for example, running a large event or on an assignment that requires constant attention, (such as hosting a fundraiser or participating in a project with volunteers), make it a point to have some coverage for them to take proper breaks. This will allow them to rest and rejuvenate so they can come back stronger and better able to do a great job.   

3. Implement a performance management process that works

Research shows that performance management works best when it is ongoing and consistent. The best systems are easy-to-use and include feedback to employees more than once a year. Using a regular, ongoing performance management system ensures that employees understand how they are performing against the expectations of the organization.  It also provides the organization an opportunity to be sure that work is being completed effectively and in line with the mission.

When it comes to creating and implementing these processes or any other, take the time to think through what is best for your particular organization, your employees and your mission.

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