How To Boost Employee Morale in 6 Steps (Plus Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 16 August 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

If you're exploring ways to improve the overall productivity of your workforce, raising employee morale is one solution. Good employee morale typically means employees may be absent less often and more productive in their work. Learning how to evaluate the morale of your own workforce is a good first step in determining whether there is an opportunity for improvement. In this article, we discuss why employee morale matters, how to boost employee morale and how to evaluate your current employee morale.

Related: Creating a Healthy Corporate Culture

What are the benefits of boosting employee morale?

There are many benefits of boosting employee morale, including:

Better productivity rates

Production is usually higher when employees feel good about and enjoy the environment they work in. This can increase the likelihood that a company achieves its primary goals. It may also lead to higher compensation and promotional opportunities for employees.

Improved attendance

When employee morale is high, employees' attendance at work tends to be more consistent. Strong attendance can increase revenue and maintain high production levels, contributing to the company's ability to reach its goals. More attendance among employees also means they're more likely to keep up with their workloads, which can help maintain lower stress levels among the workforce. In addition, increased attendance can help coworkers build more positive relationships with each other.

Greater teamwork

Companies that have high levels of morale often have greater feelings of teamwork and increased collaboration. When morale is high, workers tend to be comfortable with one another. They may also be more willing to work together for the good of the company.

How to boost employee morale

Here are six steps to help you boost employee morale at your company:

1. Offer employee incentives

Provide your employees with periodic incentives for reaching project milestones or working diligently and effectively. Incentives can include providing catered lunches, branded company merchandise, extra time off or bonuses. Employee incentives can provide positive reinforcement to your staff when they achieve excellent work and encourage them to continue providing high-quality job performances.

2. Provide development opportunities

Give your employees various opportunities to advance in their careers. Development opportunities can allow your staff to grow their skill set, take on additional responsibilities or fulfil leadership roles. Consider offering internal classes, workshops or training sessions within your department or company. You can also send employees to conventions or external courses in your field or industry. Additionally, you might try giving extra or leadership duties to your employees to see if they have the potential to rise to a more advanced position within your company.

3. Help employees stay healthy

Encourage your employees to take care of their health and have a work-life balance. Make sure your employees take their breaks rather than spending their allotted break times working. If possible, offer company initiatives that promote staff wellness, such as paid time off or gym memberships.

4. Conduct supervisor training sessions

Train your company's supervisors and team leaders on how to monitor and improve employee morale. Individual team leaders, managers and other employees in supervisory roles can have a great impact on the morale of specific teams or departments. These training sessions may vary depending on your company's structure but may include lessons or workshops on providing constructive feedback, communicating effectively in various scenarios and raising productivity.

5. Arrange team-building exercises

Conduct activities that encourage team members to get to know one another and collaborate. Team-building exercises can help employees improve their relationships with their colleagues and think in creative ways, both of which can boost employee morale. Look for team-building activities that are both fun and teach your employees valuable skills, such as exercises that build communication abilities. Team-building exercises that are purely for fun, like trivia contests, can also help teams collaborate better and create positive relationships.

Related: 8 Essential Supervisor Skills

6. Recognise employees for their accomplishments and efforts

Initiate or bolster your employee recognition system. Acknowledge employees by providing public praise and encouraging others to send them congratulatory messages. You can recognise your employees for successfully completing projects, getting hired or promoted, reaching work anniversaries or even personal milestones such as having a baby.

How to evaluate staff morale

Here are some steps you can follow to evaluate the morale of your staff:

1. Observe behaviour

Begin measuring employee morale by observing their behaviour and actions. Systematically evaluate the level of morale by noting an employee's overall demeanour, quality of work and productivity. Common behaviours that accompany low morale include a decrease in enthusiasm, turning assignments in late or not performing at the expected quality levels.

2. Conduct surveys

Surveys are another easy way to measure the morale of your workforce. Some questions you can cover within the survey include whether the job is fulfilling, whether the employee feels content, whether they believe there's room to grow and how likely they are to stay with the company. You can also give the employees room within the survey to comment in their own words and offer suggestions.

3. Perform periodic interviews

Periodically interview your employees and gauge their overall satisfaction. These interviews can give employees the opportunity to tell you how they feel about the work they're doing, identify the things they need to work on and give feedback on what the company might do to support them more effectively. Allowing employees to offer input can increase employee satisfaction and productivity.

4. Measure productivity

Productivity can be an indicator of employee morale, although it's important to view productivity as just one component of the broader view. For example, there are cases where companies with high morale may have low productivity, which is a byproduct of a problem elsewhere. However, if you notice that productivity is high and other indicators point to high levels of employee satisfaction, you can safely assume that your overall morale is good.

5. Evaluate retention

Employee retention is often a powerful indicator of how satisfied your employees are in the workplace. High retention rates typically signify that your employees are happy and that a company is taking the right measures to keep employee morale high. If you notice that turnover is increasing, it can be a sign that morale is low and that you need to increase the satisfaction of your workforce.

6. Examine conflict

Examining the frequency of conflict appearing in your office can be a good way to measure the morale of your staff. While conflict may naturally occur in offices because of differences in personality and opinions, if you're frequently asked to help resolve conflicts between employees, it can indicate that your employees aren't getting along well and that the overall morale of the team is low. If you notice that conflict within the workforce is minimal or nonexistent, it generally shows that your employees are working well as a team. This also indicates positive employee morale.

Tips for improving staff morale

Here is some advice for raising your company's or department's employee morale:

Maintain open and frequent communication

Communicate often with your team or staff. Employees usually appreciate managers who keep them informed about the latest developments, news or changes within their company. When possible, be honest with your employees about current or pending changes in their department or to your organisation.

Try to check in regularly with your employees about their current duties, job satisfaction and any challenges they might currently have. Let your staff know they can come to you or their immediate supervisor with their questions and concerns. Employees who feel comfortable coming to their supervisors when issues arise often have higher staff morale.

Related: 4 Types of Communication (With Examples)

Cultivate diversity among your staff

Encourage diversity among your employees at all stages, including during recruitment processes and regular company operations. Since people value inclusivity, employers that promote staff members of diverse backgrounds and with diverse opinions may see improvements in their employee morale. Companies can implement a range of diversity efforts, including fair recruitment processes, diversity training sessions or mentorship programmes.

Related: Learning About Diversity and Inclusion: 10 Free Virtual Courses

Consider using tools

Think about incorporating tools into your operations to boost staff morale. Most supervisors and others in management roles have many responsibilities, so using these tools can help make sure you effectively make time for employee morale among your usual duties. For example, you might decide to use an online system that automatically sends employees surveys each week or month.

Explore more articles