In early 2019, a report published by Human Resources Executive revealed that temporary workers at several of the largest companies in the world felt like second class citizens. They weren’t included in email chains for major company updates, even those pertaining to incidents like workplace shootings. Unfortunately, this is hardly unique to these organizations.
According to Deloitte, even though only 42% of companies consist primarily of salaried employees, a paltry 16% have concrete policies and processes for managing them. At best, this means non-permanent employees feel like they’re out of the loop. At worst, it can result in dissatisfaction, disengagement, or even anger.
A seasonal employee should never feel like they’re disposable. They should never feel like a temporary resource; a means by which your business can meet the ebb and flow of industry and seasonal demands. Yet evidence suggests that many do.
As you might expect, this creates several problems.
Unhappiness Is Far From Temporary
If a seasonal worker feels like they matter less than salaried or permanent staff, that tends to generate at least some resentment.
Happier employees not only do better work but are generally healthier overall. Conversely, someone who’s disengaged from and indifferent to their position isn’t going to do their best. They’ll likely do just enough to avoid getting fired.
A seasonal worker’s poor mood can very easily infect the people around them, too. Per a study published in The Royal Society of Open Science, moods are contagious. Someone who’s happy and satisfied with their job will lift up the people around them, while someone who’s angry or disillusioned will do the opposite.
The good news is that addressing these problems is easier than you might think. You aren’t going to need to reinvent your business or make sweeping changes to workplace culture. Instead, the solution boils down to one thing — communication.
Seasonal Workers Likely Aren’t The Only Temp Staff You’ll Hire
The pandemic has completely overturned our old way of work. As a result, the market for temporary employment is booming. According to nonprofit The Commonwealth Fund, at least 7.7 million people lost their jobs as of June 2020.
In a recent survey by job search agency Monster, 92% of respondents expressed the belief that now is the right time to look into gig work. We estimate that many of those people will, when the dust settles, find it difficult to go back to their old jobs. This means that it may be immensely beneficial to bring in more contractors, remote and otherwise, to support your organization in the coming months.
In addition to potentially saving you money on expenses like social security, they offer a multitude of other benefits. These include improved flexibility, less administrative overhead, and (if you’re willing to hire remote staff), access to a far larger talent pool.
Keeping Temporary Staff In The Loop
In order to keep your temporary workers engaged and productive, you need to ensure that they….
- Have access to the same information as a full-time employee where relevant.
- Are included in all company-wide announcements, updates, and alerts.
- Can glean all the information they need for their job from your onboarding process, which should be as streamlined as possible.
- Can quickly reach out to leadership if they need clarification on their role or help with a project.
- Are able to quickly and easily communicate and collaborate with colleagues.
To be blunt, email is simply insufficient for this task. The amount of time and effort it would take to properly update, track, and maintain a mailing list that includes both gig workers and seasonal workers is better spent elsewhere. And that’s not even getting into the reasons that email is simply ineffective in the workplace.
Consumer messaging tools won’t work, either. There is no guarantee your conversations will remain secure or private, and disseminating company announcements usually takes far too much effort. Never mind the fact that none of these solutions were built with workplace collaboration in mind.
You’re essentially trying to use a screwdriver to hammer in a nail. Sure, you might be able to do it, but there are far better tools for the job. Instead of trying to force things with outdated or unsuitable software, your best bet is to use a UCaaS solution that will allow you to centralize collaboration, communication, and announcements in a single place.
Unio is just such a solution.
Bringing All Your People Together
A secure collaboration platform designed from the bottom-up for the workplace, Unio allows your employees to stay connected to one another through voice, video, file sharing, and messaging. It features an integrated newsfeed so that you can keep all your important announcements in a single place. This newsfeed acts as a hub for essential communication while also allowing you to keep important information — frequently-asked questions about onboarding, for instance — readily accessible.
Better yet, Unio’s incredibly intuitive. From a user standpoint, it’s simple to understand with groups and channels allowing for easy prioritization where collaboration is concerned. And from an administrative standpoint, it’s easy to manage, allowing you to quickly add and remove users as contractors join and leave your organization.
Whether they’re seasonal workers, gig workers, or contractors, temporary employees are just as much a part of your organization as permanent staff — and with Unio, you can help ensure that they know that.