Do you really need an employee management system?

Imagine if your mother told you to clean your room. But, she didn't inform you that it meant more than just picking up your clothes and actually included dusting and vacuuming.

Then again, she didn’t provide you with a dust cloth or vacuum cleaner, so how were you to know what was expected?

That, in essence, is what a good employee management system resolves. The system should let employees know what's expected of them and give them the tools to complete the task.

The Flower Shop Scenario

Consider the troubles a florist shop could encounter without a credible employee management system. Each employee likely would do whatever was in front of them, rather than stick to an assigned task.

The front counter could be un-attended while employees are out making deliveries. Or expensive flowers could wilt, as employees aren’t sure who is to make the deliveries. Besides, the shop does not have a delivery van. Bouquets would be made from whatever flowers are available because no one reordered supplies. Customers would leave in frustration and the shop wouldn’t be in business for long.

All these problems could be solved if the shop established an employee management system.

It would:

  • Train employees on what their duties are, and
  • How to accomplish them
  • Give them the equipment they need
  • Reward them for a job well done 

Methods of Management

To start off, a goal setting management system should be based on the SMART concept. 

  • Specific: Management defines specific goals
  • Measurable: Progress in these goals should be measurable in numbers, graphs, and charts
  • Agreed: These goals and measurements should be agreed-upon by employer and employee
  • Realistic: Given the right training and tools, these goals should be attainable
  • Timely: Employees should know of any deadlines for the task

To get the most out of employees, while providing them with a pleasant and motivating workplace, there are basically five essential parts to a management system. Including the SMART goal-setting system, the other four include:

  • Delegation: Proper procedures make task delegation more progressive. This includes meeting with employees to go over tasks and time lines. It also means discussing the results once the task is completed to identify any problem areas.
  • Feedback: Stay in touch on a monthly or weekly basis with employees to discuss the performance development plan.
  • Training: Establish training programs to help employees understand their responsibilities and better ways of achieving them. Mentorship or coaching programs with an experienced staff member could improve the business culture.
  • Recognition: Reward employees who meet management expectations. This is a prime method of providing feedback and promoting productivity among the staff

The correct system helps employee morale and reduces competition that could hurt team atmosphere. How a system is designed matters, but using it the right way is just as important.

Measuring employee performance by pitting them against each other is bad. It makes for a disruptive subculture of competition and results in two separate tiers of workers: the winners and the losers.

To resolve this issue, management would more likely achieve its goals by measuring employee output by a set standard of markers that each can attain. This would allow employees to work with each other rather than compete and undermine progress.