Planning your warehouse layout and break our areas effectively, could have a huge impact on staff morale and productivity.
Happy workers are productive workers. But how do you increase staff morale and motivate a group of employees to work hard and help your business grow? As a small business owner, you need to maximise revenue and increase productivity, which means you need your staff to work as efficiently as possible.
People can spend close to 90% of their time indoors and can spend about a third of their waking hours at their workplace. Is it any wonder then that our physical or mental health is greatly affected by the aspects of our workplace?
If working conditions are undesirable the result can mean lower work performance, increased error rates, injuries and absences. However, just the opposite can occur with a well-designed workplace. More often or not, when planning a warehouse, it generally focuses on the physical effects of the workers and not how it affects the well-being of the workers.
The logistics sector employs over 1.7 million workers in the UK and must actively manage staff morale to ensure it attracts and retains the best employees. The warehouse is a key focus here and traditionally may not be seen as the happiest of working environments.
Logistics can be a highly satisfying job, but it’s also one that requires discipline and teamwork. It’s vital for warehouse staff to feel happy at work and get on well with their colleagues, so here are some ideas for motivating your warehouse logistics staff.
Communicate Better –
If you’re nothing more than a face on a newsletter or a name on an email, what motivation will your employees have to meet your goals? The importance of employee communications is often overlooked. You should communicate with them frequently, and actually speak with them face-to-face. Your staff needs to know they are valued, and communicating in person with them is the best way to show your appreciation for their hard work.
Give your employees more of a say in how they do their job. Ask for their input and get suggestions on how they can improve their performance. Most employees have ideas about how they can be more efficient, but they may not share them with you unless you specifically ask them.
Team building –
Warehouse logistics is a job that requires everyone to pull together, so it’s important to build a sense of belonging within the team. Investing in regular staff get-togethers outside of work can really pay dividends to create a happy, sociable and productive workplace and increase staff morale.
Incentives are also great motivation boosters — and don’t have to be expensive. You can offer incentives like an extra paid day off, gift cards, tickets to the movies, or other low-cost ways to show your appreciation. Of course, cash rewards/ bonuses are always good incentives as well.
New Technology –
Is the latest technology the key? The concept of talking to a machine may not sound like a great motivator, but voice technology and the latest WMS solutions have been found to have positive effects on warehouse workers’ work-life balance and overall wellbeing.
The system can provide clear guidance and direction over the course of the shift, enabling greater efficiency whilst reducing frustration and errors. As instructions are given on an as needed basis, pickers can concentrate on single actions without distraction or delay, thereby reducing errors.
Shift Work –
Shift work can’t often be avoided in a large warehouse, where production carries on outside the usual nine to five. This isn’t always easy for workers, whose family and social life can suffer because of evening and weekend shifts, so it’s essential to keep morale high. Create events for families that give everyone the chance to get to know each other outside the work environment, as well as recognising that employees have a family life that is important to them. Where possible, try to remain flexible in accommodating shift changes requested by your staff for special occasions. This will ensure you maintain a happy motivated team and improve productivity.
Health and Wellbeing –
A warehouse can be a physically demanding environment, with heavy lifting and physical work often making up much of the logistics worker’s day. Ensure regular breaks and time off that will give your staff time to recharge their batteries and remain fit for work.
Employee health is directly linked to employee productivity and as we well know employee productivity directly relates to your bottom line. So it is in your best interests to design your warehouse space and break out areas that take into account way of improving your employees’ health and staff morale.
Break out Areas –
A break out area describes any space open to employees that is separate from their usual working area. It can be a place for employees to relax, eat their lunch and even hold informal meetings. Companies can sometimes see a break out area as an unnecessary but employers should consider the benefits and how this will impact on the company’s performance before ruling them out. The fact is that, with the right environment, a breakout space can become an invaluable work area.
It has been found that meetings conducted in a more informal environment are more productive for brainstorming and idea generation.
Lastly remember to bear in mind that warehouses do not have many windows and is absent of natural light, lighting in your break out areas can play an important role in creating a comfortable, light and mood lifting environment. Linking artificial lighting cleverly with the natural daylight can ensure optimum lighting conditions whilst minimising energy consumption.
Remember employee happiness is one of the keys to success. If you have employees that are engaged and happy, the company will grow and errors will be reduced, resulting in a better bottom line and good staff morale.
Speak to one of our team to understand how Clarus’ WMS system can cost effectively support best practice warehouse management processes, better customer service and highly efficient working for a range of warehouse operations with pay per month options and no IT infrastructure needed.
Our platform can scale from a one user, small depot system to a 100’s of user distribution centre operation. The ClarusWMS platform will cost effectively scale with your business based on demand.
ClarusWMS is a UK based supplier of warehouse management solutions with a wealth of industry experience in third party logistics, wholesale / retail distribution, online fulfillment and manufacturing warehousing.