A human resource manager’s worst nightmare is an influx of employees who, rather than working hard during the day, opt to waste as much time as possible in non-work related activities; Poor time management and mismanagement of priorities at the work place results in poor performance, poor customer service, missed deadlines and many more vices.
The best thing to do as an employer or a human resource manager is to determine the root cause of the problem in order to find long lasting solutions. Why do employees waste time at work? Below are some of the major reasons.
- Lack of a clear goal
A survey conducted on employees in 2013 suggests that thirty five percent of employees who waste time at the work place feel like their work place lack a clear goal. Most people tend to do only as they are told and lack the motivation to push themselves further. As an employer it is very important to set goals and expectations for your employees. This will give them a sense of purpose and determination to be able to reach and achieve the required end goal. If you provide the company’s agenda from the start, the employees will develop a healthy work-based culture to forge towards the same agenda.
- Lack of a challenge in the nature of work
Some employees admit that they waste time at work because their jobs do not present much of a challenge to them. These employees find themselves engaging in time-wasting activities such as idle talk with coworkers, non-work related online activities and some even take longer breaks than recommended. In order to address this issue, recruitment of employees to different departments should be done very carefully. It is necessary therefore to consider the qualification of a candidate before work placement, do not give manual easy-to-finish work to an overly qualified degree holder. Have the proper candidate for the job.
It is quite interesting that some employees would admit to simply being bored at the workplace therefore entertaining themselves by engaging in other activities. In order to deal with such a worker, the employer should first and foremost discourage this behavior by using services that can track the employees. Websites such as clockspot.com can inform you more about such services. In addition, the employer can introduce work-related networks on social media to curb the boredom problem. Appropriate breaks can also be placed in between long working periods.
If left unchecked, a culture of time wasting and procrastination can lead to constant disciplinary issues, loss of revenue and strained internal relationships within a company. High turnovers in any company are a costly venture and even if the company decides to fire all time wasters, they really have not addressed the root cause of such a culture in their organization. It will end up being an ongoing process, much like a merry-go-round of different employees with the exact same work ethic. Work on the root cause and watch the problem of time wasting start to disappear.