Job satisfaction comprises the way in which a person experiences their work. Some factors of job satisfaction are motivation, involvement, collaboration, culture or personal growth. In a time when the way of working and collaboration has changed considerably, information about job satisfaction is at least as interesting as information about absenteeism or other information.

The announced lockdown in mid-March 2020 forced the economy to an abrupt halt. Working from home suddenly became the norm, which required a lot of adjustments from employees. Challenges arose from both a logistics point of view (how do I set up a good home workplace?) and from an emotional well-being point of view (when will I see my colleagues again?). In the meantime, the current situation of working from home as a standard has not changed and a large proportion of employees have been working from home for almost a year. Time to pay extra attention to the consequences for the work experience while working from home.

Employees are feeling the effects of the pandemic

A Willis Towers Watson survey of 100,000 respondents worldwide since March 2020 shows that employees are feeling the emotional consequences of the coronavirus pandemic. For example, more than 92% feel some degree of fear because of the coronavirus, with 55% indicating an average or higher level of fear. Also, only 32% of respondents believe that they can easily combine working from home with other responsibilities.

Tilburg University also conducted a survey among its own employees into work and well-being during the coronavirus pandemic (June, 2020). This showed, among other things, that men experience a greater effect of the pandemic at work than women. Other interesting results:

  • Employees with children and women more often indicate that they are burdened by care tasks and/or home education than employees without children and men.
  • Employees with children and women more often indicate that they are burdened by care tasks and/or home education than employees without children and men.
  • Isolation/lack of social contact, fatigue and lack of structure are most common in the age group 34 or younger.
  • 28% of respondents indicate that they cannot or insufficiently separate working time and private time.
Werkbeleving tijdens het thuiswerken bcs

Improving job satisfaction and engagement among home workers

We can therefore cautiously conclude that the coronavirus pandemic has not only economic, but also emotional consequences for employees. Mental health is important for staying productive throughout the day and being motivated to work for an employer. Supporting employees while working from home, with regard to the right equipment and work space, but also on a personal level, helps to positively stimulate job satisfaction and involvement. Below we give you some tips on how to deal with this.

Five tips to support employees and increase engagement:

  • Call your employees or colleagues through a video connection instead of regular calls. Calling becomes a lot more personal when you can see each other. You can also see a person's body language when on a video call.
  • Start a personal conversation. As a manager, don't just ask how the work is going, but also how the person is doing and how they are feeling.
  • Celebrate successes. Involve employees in celebrating successes. When not all employees are in the office at the same time, they can miss out on important moments. During a team meeting, for example, take the time to measure successes and to compliment the team.
  • Show your gratitude with a small present, a handwritten card or a treat for the home, for example. For home workers with children, a nice colouring book with pencils can be a personal gift. It doesn't have to be of great value, but let your employees know you're thinking of them.
  • Physical health also remains important, like an ergonomic working posture, for example. Stimulate a correct sitting posture or set up a good home workstation.

Working from home will continue to be the norm for the foreseeable future. Help your employees with the above tips to positively stimulate job satisfaction while working from home. Do you have questions about how our HRM software can contribute to your staff policy? Please contact us without obligation.

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