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Posts Tagged ‘human resources’

What have you done for department morale lately?

August 8th, 2008 Comments off

In an environment of increasing workloads and minimized staff levels, there’s no question that Finance staffers are carrying a pretty heavy load. Between mid-year forecast exercises, non-stop scenario planning, covering for vacant positions, and prepping for the pending Budget season, it’s a safe bet that morale levels are being squeezed and staffers aren’t feeling entirely appreciated.

Although we typically expect a much higher level of output and responsibility within the Finance department, there’s still the necessity of recognizing the achievements of the group. While we are typically the last one’s, atleast as the Finance leader, to need a cheerleader, that may not be the case with those we are responsible for mentoring and keeping motivated.

The ironic part is that it has never really taken a tremendous amount to keep the team motivated. It all comes down to a simple recognition of the efforts put forth and occassionally praising the team in public. What are some of the other gestures you can make for recognizing the group?

-Taking the group out for a nice lunch and cutting them loose for the rest of the day?
-Organize a group outing to a local recreational or outdoor spot for group activities?
-Arranging for a group luncheon or brunch around key holidays and publicly thanking all for their efforts?
-Modest gift cards to local retailers or restaurants?

When you think about the alternatives of staff turnover, lost momentum, recruiting fees, and the impact on group morale, these are all pretty low cost solutions to recognizing the group. It all comes down to one question….What have you done for department morale lately?

Thanks for reading . . . .

Do you know the cost of employee turnover?

August 4th, 2008 Comments off

Recently I’ve read a number of articles about employee turnover, the effect on morale, and the impacts to productivity. While it’s difficult to quantify the true cost and the effect on productivity within a Finance department, we can look to other areas in the company for a view of what that cost really is. Once you can quantify it, the number is pretty staggering.

With one previous company I was at, I partnered with our headquarters in France to develop a new reporting structure for the Services segment of the organization. For this segment, it comprised approximately 30% of our revenues but a much more significant portion of our EBIT. Even with this level of significance, we did not previously have the ability to measure our productivity levels, margin performance by segment, or identify areas for opportunity. We were simply working with a consolidated P&L to report our monthly performance.

The new information that we were able to use, as well as understand the costs to the organization, was both staggering and exciting since it was a huge opportunity for continued improvement.

Read the entire commentary – Do you know the cost of employee turnover?