Hanging on to your best-performing employees is a challenge for any employer but in the materials handling world perhaps even more so. A connected Forklift Safety System (FSS) can help.
The Great Resignation has often been viewed through the lens of white-collar workers who resist going into the office and job hop for higher salaries. Yet, according to BCG, about 75-80% of the workforce consists of employees who don’t work in an office and have never had the option of working remotely. A lot of ink has been spilled recently regarding this ”Great Resignation” but, in fact, in the materials handling world, it has been a persistent challenge for many years. Skilled employees migrating to different companies and jobs is the norm, not a new trend.
Making Staff Feel Valued
The March PwC Global Workforce Hopes and Fears report states that, 60% of non-office working staff said that “feeling like their team respected their well-being” impacted their desire to remain at their current job. It might seem obvious that making your staff feel valued contributes to their job satisfaction but in busy, often routine, work environments it can be easy to forget to take the time and make the effort. An effort that Dee Clark in his blog post Happily, a warehouse manager for 30 years notes should be happening daily. I think the key to a safe and productive operation is to engage with your folks daily, let them know you care and put safety first always
Introducing FSS solutions to your forklift fleet is a fast and simple way to exponentially and immediately increase safety in your workers’ environment. People detection features make everyone on the floor, not just forklift operators, feel safer and demonstrate you care about their wellbeing.
Making the Mundane Easier & Faster
Pretty much every job has tasks that are boring or mundane and seem to just take up time that interferes with the “real business” of getting down to work. If TV series are to be believed, that might be paperwork for police detectives… but in the real world it’s the paperwork and administrative tasks that often contribute the most to actually solving the toughest crimes.
In the materials handling world, forklift operators and managers probably see the actual time spent lugging pallets from loading bays to storage racks as the core productivity uptime but, without proper inspections and maintenance, the downtime caused by faulty equipment can dramatically eat into productivity results.
A connected FSS with a mobile app to speed up inspection and maintenance tasks shows your staff that you understand their needs and are trying to provide them with the right tools to make that part of their job easier and faster.
The Latest & Greatest
Don’t ever underestimate your staff’s desire to learn or be using the latest technologies. Particularly with younger staff that have grown up with the internet and smartphones. Even if they haven’t said it, they are probably already thinking that antiquated paperwork approaches to inspections and reports, for example, is a big waste of their time.
A connected FSS that includes an app for quickly tapping out inspections or maintenance reports is more in line with what they see as a modern, correct approach to a task. Talking to their friends in the industry about competing job opportunities, you’re giving them one more valuable reason to not want to leave your business, which uses the latest and greatest technologies, to join businesses that lag behind using “old school” approaches to tasks. Maybe they’ll even convince others to join your business. These practical technological solutions to increasing productivity are also brand enhancing.
Focus On The Feels
As Dee Clark suggests, ideally your managers and HR people would be spending daily time with staff to better understand their needs and concerns (both work and personal when appropriate) to help develop their skills, make them feel safe and valued, give the occasional pep talk or just plain add the necessary human contact that can make an employee’s relationship to their job more meaningful.
In reality, management and HR resources are limited… and likely spent seeking, interviewing, hiring, processing, training, inspecting, evaluating, reaching out, monitoring, record keeping etc… rinse and repeat. Seasonal fluctuations in business often mean increases in employees and equipment used but seldom an increase in managers. Managers and back-office staff often wear many hats and need all the help they can get.
A cloud-connected FSS like the VIA Mobile360 Forklift Safety System with dashboard views of important driver data, simpler and faster access to reports, and clearer big picture views of what’s happening on the workplace floor saves time. Time that can be spent on your most valuable assets, your hardworking people.