There’s been a lot of talk about work-life balance over the last several years, and most of it has gone right over the recruiting industry’s collective head. We worked long hours, and we were resigned to that fact; it was the price we paid to play in a highly competitive field and for the opportunity to make big-sized commissions. But it’s changing.
What happened? For one, the general business landscape has moved toward greater work-life balance, and recruiting is simply falling in line. Millennials, in particular, have had influence here; according to the 2016 Deloitte Millennial Survey, millennials value work-life balance more than any other career feature, including the ability to progress in a job, the prevalence of technology, and a sense of meaning at work.
Here are a few more compelling stats about the importance of work-life balance:
- In a 2017 Gallup survey, 53 percent of respondents said a job that enables them to have greater work-life balance is “very important” to them.
- Employees with children aren’t the only ones prioritizing work-life balance; in a 2017 FlexJobs survey of 2,200 workers without kids, 72 percent said work-life balance was the most important factor when evaluating a job prospect, beating salary (70 percent) and a flexible schedule (65 percent).
- Companies are recognizing the importance of work-life balance, too. In the 2017 Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends survey, 23 percent of employers said they are “excellent” at helping workers balance personal and professional demands.
As an agency owner, you may know in a roundabout way that work-life balance is important, but how good are you at actually promoting it? Let’s look at four ways you benefit from providing such balance and four ways you can encourage it at your firm.
4 reasons why work-life balance is important
1. Healthier employees
Lack of balance causes stress. And stress ushers in a host of health problems, including headaches, chest pain, exhaustion, stomach problems, lack of motivation and focus, anger and depression, Mayo Clinic reports. Over time, chronic stress can lead to serious health problems.
All of this, of course, costs you money in absenteeism and reduced productivity (not to mention, ill-health isn’t exactly fun for your employees, either). When employees have greater work-life balance, they are less stressed, healthier and overall better employees.
2. Greater engagement
Engagement numbers for work are pretty dismal these days. According to Gallup’s State of the American Workplace report, 70 percent of the American workforce is “not engaged” or “actively disengaged” at their jobs. This translates to reduced productivity and emotional disconnection from our work.
Facilitating greater balance among your employees, however, increases their engagement levels. They are then more likely to have a favorable perception of you as an employer and to believe that you value them as a whole person. As a result, they are more apt to put in extra time and effort when it really is crunch time.
3. Reduced turnover
Everyone knows that employee turnover is expensive. And according to the 2018 Randstad Employer Brand Research report, 28 percent of employees who decided to quit their jobs cited work-life balance issues as the main reason.
Conversely, promoting work-life balance improves employee retention. Employees are more committed and motivated to stay with your firm.
4. Become known as an employer of choice
All of the above helps you be recognized as an agency that recruiters and salespeople want to work for. This enables you to attract and retain top talent, which we all want.
4 ways to promote work-life balance at your agency
1. Encourage time off
Americans are getting better about taking their vacation time, but there’s still room for improvement. In Project: Time Off’s State of American Vacation 2018 report, 52 percent of workers said they had unused PTO left over at the end of 2017, compared to 54 percent in 2016 and 55 percent in 2015.
Create a culture in which your employees are encouraged to take time off. Make sure to lead by example and take a break yourself.
2. Leave them alone when they ARE off
Emergencies happen, big deals are about to close, and sometimes, everyone needs to kick it up a notch and put in some extra time. That’s the nature of business, and it’s OK. Your employees are much more likely to step up when they’re needed if you truly honor their down time during the other, non-pressing times.
If it’s not an emergency, the eve of a big deal or a similar situation, leave them alone when they’re off. Let them have their time to relax, tend to family, etc.
3. Offer flexibility
Does everyone need to be in the office from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.? Probably not. Offer your staff flexible schedules to better fit their other responsibilities. Compressed work weeks and job share options are other ways to promote work-life balance. According to Zenefits’s 2018 State of Flexible Work Arrangements report, 67 percent of small businesses offer their employees some type of flexible work arrangement, and 73 percent of workers said flexible work arrangements increased their job satisfaction.
4. Offer remote days
Cloud technology means employees can work from anywhere in the world there’s an internet connection. Do they need to be in the office every day? Again, probably not. Offer them a remote day once a week. They save time and money on their commute, and many remote workers find they get more done without office distractions.
If you’re worried about productivity issues, read our blog post, 5 Tips to Help Recruiters Be More Productive When Working Remotely.
Be good to your employees, and…
They’ll be good to you.
When you promote work-life balance at your recruitment agency, you empower your staff, improve their job satisfaction and boost your own ability to attract and retain top talent. And when you do need them to go the extra mile, they’ll gladly do so, because you meet them halfway so often.
Looking for additional productivity boosters for your team? Read our ebook, 7 Ways to Increase the Productivity of Your Recruiters by 20 Percent or More. It’s full of operational changes you can make to increase recruiter productivity and improve your bottom line.
TrackerRMS is the leading cloud-based software solution for recruiting agencies. TrackerRMS helps your agency become more productive and profitable. Schedule a demo today.