In his recent blogpost Social Leads to Happy Cells, Daniel pointed out that feeling a sense of purpose and direction leads to a positive reaction within our immune system, and therefore the right work environment is a crucial part of our life. I totally second that and I would highlight another aspect of the study “negative external conditions like chronic stress reduce eudaimonic happiness….”
Stress is a Huge Challenge
According to recent research, 77% of the US workforce regularly experiences physical symptoms caused by stress and the top reason is job pressure. Stress is a big economic factor because it costs employers over $300B annually in stress-related health care expenses and missed work.
However, stress isn’t always bad, science differentiates between eustress (positive stress) and distress (negative stress). While distress has a negative impact on our mental and physical health, eustress is the secret sauce for extraordinary achievements.
Shifting to Positive Stress
Job pressure is the most common reason for stress, and the bad news is that we cannot change most of our jobs to be less stressful. However, every organization can do a lot to reduce some factors leading to distress. If you look at the roots of distress, one of the major problems is work overload. While we often cannot reduce the amount of work, organizations can help employees be more efficient to free more time to get work done. Nothing is more rewarding than having the freedom to get an ambitious amount of work done.
But how do you help employees to get more work done? Well, one of the answers is you can reduce the time it takes to do routine tasks. Things like time entries, travel expenses, approvals, etc., can take a couple of hours per week when done on paper, via email, or in cumbersome systems. So if you let them take care of these routine tasks in their preferred environment (e.g., Intranet), utilizing an easy-to-use experience and/or on their device-of-choice you will see a boost in adoption and user satisfaction.
Such an environment will also help to take the administrative burden away from HR and free resources to focus on strategic and more important goals such as retaining top talent. Recent research from online enrollment researcher, Software Advice, shows that HR departments spend 80% of their time on administration and paperwork. Another major task of HR is answering questions and resolving issues, often caused by cumbersome HCM systems. The good news is that if you provide an integrated social and mobile workplace, HR will have less paperwork, less system-related questions, and better processes. Our customers saw questions go down from thousands to dozens, process costs go down, and user satisfaction and HR satisfaction go up.
HR is Key for Your Organization’s Success
Making necessary routines for thousands of employees easy has a huge impact on overall company performance. It not only helps to reduce distress, but can also save a lot of costs on the long run. HR automation, for example, saves on average $9 per employee per month; or one of our customers is able to grow faster with the same amount of HR staff by turning SAP processes into a compelling self-services environment. Watch this webinar to learn more from our Chief People Officer. Another huge angle is benefits enrollment; 93 percent perceive digital benefits enrollment as efficient. I highly recommend watching this webinar to get more insights on optimizing your enrollment period with a self-services portal.