Increase Employee Loyalty and Save Some Green

Julie Shenkman
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With the high cost of food, home energy prices spiking, flat wages, mortgage woes, government bailouts, and the pending presidential election, the minds of the American workforce is currently monopolized with some heavy issues. In a recent poll conducted across the Nexxt Network, consisting of thousands of niche career sites, more than 20,000 business professionals responded to the question “What alternatives are you considering as a result of high gas prices affecting your commute to work?” Surprisingly, almost 79 percent said that they are looking for a job closer to home.
High gas prices are having a big effect on employee loyalty and have caused many professionals to consider taking drastic measures to save money on their commute, even if it means leaving their current job. A past poll conducted by Nexxt also discovered that 27 percent of professionals travel 25 miles or more to work. However, if gas prices continue to rise, the number of workers commuting long distances could decrease significantly. So what are employers doing to try to keep their employees happy and loyal in these tough times? In a recent Nexxt poll that asked, “What is your employer doing to help with the rising price of gas affecting your commute?” more than 7,000 business professionals responded and surprisingly only about 28 percent of employers are trying to ease the financial tensions for members of their staff. Those in touch with the needs of their employees are allowing team members to telecommute (14.32 percent), work a short work week (7.25 percent), and provide company sponsored transportation (6.30 percent). But, why is it that 72 percent of employers are not doing anything to help out? Is it the fear that the organization will become less productive if employees are not in the office or that there will be an added cost to company expenses? Well, the good news is there are several ways to save some green and reach out to the masses and help employees. Here are five easy ways employers and employees can both benefit:
  • Promote Public Transportation - Post current transit schedules in the office to inform employees of available routes to-and-from work. Also, consider subsidizing public transportation.
  • Reward Employee Performance – Reward employees who have earned perfect attendance or achieved a specific goal or objective with a gas card. This is also an effective to increase productivity and reduce absenteeism.
  • Offer Flexibility – Identify employees who can effectively perform their job from home or offer the ability to work longer days, resulting in a shorter work week.
  • Encourage Carpooling – Establish and communicate an internal carpool. Consider providing preferred parking spaces to carpool participants or those owning “green vehicles.”
  • Install a Bike Rack - Offer secure bicycle storage for employees who opt to ride their bike to work.
Whether you’re an employer looking to hire happy employees or a business professional in search of a job with a shorter commute, niche job sites have become an increasingly valuable tool to connect job seekers and employers who share similar ideas and values. For more career-related tips and resources, please visit our Career Resources Center. Content for this article provided by Nexxt

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  • Milan M.
    Milan M.
    Employee loyalty to management died in the recession. Long live the new loyalty! Public and private organizations are into a phase of creative disassembly where constant reinvention and adjustments are constant. Hundreds of thousands of jobs are being shed by Chevron, NUMI, Wells Fargo Bank, HP, Starbucks etc. and the state, counties and cities. Even solid world class institutions like the University of California Berkeley are firing staff, faculty and part-time lecturers. Estimates are that the State of California may jettison 47,000 positions.Yet many employees, professionals and faculty cling to old assumptions about one of the most critical relationship of all: the implied, unwritten contract between employer and employee.Until recently, loyalty was the cornerstone of that relationship. Employers promised job security and a steady progress up the hierarchy in return for employees’s fitting in, performing in prescribed ways and sticking around. Longevity was a sign of employeer-employee relations; turnover was a sign of dysfunction. None of these assumptions apply today. Organizations can no longer guarantee employment and lifetime careers, even if they want to.Organizations that paralyzed themselves with an attachment to “success brings success’ rather than “success brings failure’ are now forced to break the implied contract with employees – a contract nurtured by management that the future can be controlled.Jettisoned employees are finding that the hard won knowledge, skills and capabilities earned while being loyal are no longer valuable in the employment market place.What kind of a contract can employers and employees make with each other? The central idea is both simple and powerful: the job or position is a shared situation. Employers and employees face market and financial conditions together, and the longevity of the partnership depends on how well the for-profit or not-for-profit continues to meet the needs of customers and constituencies.  Neither employer nor employee has a future obligation to the other. Organizations train people. Employees develop the kind of security they really need – skills, knowledge and capabilities that enhance future employability.The partnership can be dissolved without either party considering the other a traitor.
  • European Corporate Coach
    European Corporate Coach
    In my view the options the author offers are a perfect way for any employer to invest in their employees. The rising costs of living occupy many employees and a flexible way of "helping" out can significantly increase employer appreciation and decrease turnover. Helping out does not always mean an increase in paycheck, a more flexible approach to issues like commute, or vacation are most often even more effective tools!
  • Cory
    I used to work for a neurosurgeon,for 7 years he never understood that doing extra things for his employees never compared to giving them extra money. Just recently when gas became so high and economy so bad, I had to trade in my 7 years and find a new job, What a shame!
  • Mary
    Cornell University is very good about working with employees for transportation needs with TCAT such as providing free bus transportation and park and ride options, and recommending that managers allow flex time to allow fewer (but longer)  work days if possible.

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