Many of us start to relax as Christmas approaches, but the festive season can be one of the busiest times of year, especially for elves in HR departments up and down the land.
There’s business as usual to take care of, then on top you’ve got end-of-year events, reviews, maybe a party or two, and that all-important Secret Santa to coordinate.
Sparkling lights, jolly jumpers and cosy music are all very nice, but you can strike a deeper chord this Christmas by properly thanking your employees for their efforts through the last 12 months.
Besides, with January cited as the most popular hiring month in the UK, bosses will want to ensure their people feel good as we move into the New Year.
Below are some cost-effective and kindly ways to wrap up 2022:
- Show appreciation
It’s easy to forget to praise others, but so many employees say they are demotivated in their work because they feel “invisible or undervalued”.
While celebrating your staff should take place regularly, make sure it happens at Christmas with in-person shout-outs for individual and team accomplishments. Add some sparkle with after-hours drinks or earlier finishing times as the Yuletide close-down approaches.
Sending gift cards, vouchers or even presents that align with individuals’ preferences are personalised ways to raise a glass without breaking the bank.
- Festively flexible
Hectic schedules are the norm this time of year. Offset short-term tensions by allowing remote working where possible. Longer-term, look into structuring annual leave over two- or three-year cycles to prevent the same people from performing their late December vanishing act.
It’s likely that some of your staff do not celebrate Christmas, in which case swap festive public holidays for days that might be significant to other religions and cultures.
“By listening…and catering for their unique needs [we] can minimise stress, absenteeism and ultimately increase the productivity of a workforce and overall performance of a business,” advises Helen Smith, Chief Commercial Officer at Benenden Health.
- Beware the Christmas party!
We all like to let our hair down, but amid the cost of living crisis, 94% of UK workers say they’d prefer to receive a bonus than see a budget blown on a needless office bash.
“For many businesses ‘rewarding’ staff with a Christmas party this year may not be as well received as expected with many focussed on increasing their salaries as much as possible to cover costs”, says Craig Bines, CEO of The CareerWallet Group.
- Chill out
Of course, not everyone wants to get involved in a seasonal knees-up, especially those feeling the effects of burnout. HR should be ready to direct personnel to in-house support services, or to company tips on how to stay well physically and mentally until teams come back together in January.
During office hours, stay on top of employees’ working periods and breaks. It’s understood that well-rested people are more focused and energetic, but we lose sight of this reality under the pressures of doing our jobs.
Encouraging a lunch time walk will help individuals to gently boost the heart rate and clear the head – it’s a simple tactic that helped 59% of people cope better through the pandemic.
Shine a light
It’s been another tough past 12 months, so take the opportunity to highlight recent achievements and talk about exciting goals for the coming year.
Work projects are important, but think about ways you could promote personal or career development offers, too. Ultimately, it’s about communicating positively and transparently with your workers and showing that you’re committed to supporting your people no matter what the future brings.
HR Spectrum would like to wish all our clients and customers a very happy Christmas and every success for the New Year.
At HR Spectrum, we know that through collaboration with individuals and companies who you know and trust, you can achieve smoother, more effective workflows and lasting success.
To find out more about the fantastic opportunities available through HR Spectrum, contact us today.