It’s yesterday’s news that businesses across industries are embracing digital technologies and are relying on them to achieve a competitive advantage. While this is welcome news for the global economy as it leaps into the future, it also means that the responsibilities of the IT department are expanding. Therefore, it is no surprise that IT professionals in many organizations are overworked or are burning themselves out in their quest to meet the expectations laid upon them. It is only a matter of time before their productivity plummets or worse, they move to different companies. You can help avoid this by diagnosing the problem proactively and addressing it before it gets out of hand.
Signs to Look For: Employees Working More Than 50 Hours a Week
Studies indicate that productive time for employees is 4 hours per day. The rest of the working hours do not contribute to productivity in meaningful ways. Moreover, anything above 39 hours a week negatively affects their wellbeing. Not to mention that it will quickly lead to employee burnout. So, check your employees’ weekly work hours. Offer them flexible schedules if they need to be available during the odd hours. If the workload is unmanageable, consider outsourcing, hiring freelancers, temps, or even interns for low skilled tasks.
Signs to Look For: Employees Avoiding You
Most people are averse to conflicts. If they sense the potential for conflicts with their superiors, they might choose to simply avoid them. They may feel that if they avoid you, you might not assign them more tasks. And, this is not always because of a poor work ethic. They could be overworked and might be under the impression that their superiors do not care about their job satisfaction. An open conversation can help both sides communicate their sides of the story. If the increased workload is seasonal or temporary, and if you help them understand that the situation will improve soon, you might find a significant improvement in their performance.
Signs to Look For: Drastic Changes in Attitudes
When people start missing personal commitments, start having health problems, and their personal life takes a hit because of their work, pleasant people can turn passive-aggressive or even downright hostile. You might notice outbursts from them. In the short term, you can help them understand how their work directly contributes to the organization’s growth strategy. However, the only long-term solution is to ensure that their work-life balance is maintained.
Signs to Look For: Increasing Employee Turnover
There is no lack of job opportunities for skilled IT talent. So, IT professionals who value work-life balance are happy to switch jobs when their work begins to interfere with their personal life or health. The ambitious ones may burn themselves out trying to shoulder more responsibilities than they should. Others will just start looking for other job opportunities. This indicates that it might be time to find ways to reduce the workload on them. Automation is one of the better options to improve productivity, while simultaneously enhancing job satisfaction.
Signs to Look For: Spike in Sick Days
Working for long hours, during odd hours, and without sufficient rest can cause irreparable damage to your employees’ health. You might notice a sudden spike in absenteeism amongst your overworked staff. One of the ways to tackle this could be the option to work remotely. This way, employees can take rest and enjoy their family time, and work on tasks as they come up.