Studies show that the percentage of part-time workers in the United States is continuing to grow even post-recession.
Since there are no signs that this trend will be slowing down, managers are trying to find the best ways to adjust to this new way of doing business.
One of the most common myths is that hourly workers are not as effective as full-time employees. In fact, they are just as valuable in today’s workforce, if not more so. And just as you would like to retain all of your best full-time workers, you should also be thinking about how to keep your part-time employees content enough to stay with you for the long haul.
Here are some tips on how you can go about doing just that.
Pay Them Fairly
Many employers wrongfully assume that hiring part-time workers provides them a perfect opportunity to save some money on salaries. But that’s not the way that you should be entering this situation.
Part-time employees deserve to be paid hourly wages that are equal to the ones your full-time workers are receiving. They are just as important to your operation and should not be treated as second-class employees.
And remember, you will be saving money anyway. Part-time employees usually don’t get all of the benefits that are offered to full-timers, so you’ll definitely be saving some money in the end, it just won’t be on salaries.
The best way to retain your part-time workers is to not only let them know that they will be able to advance within your company, but to also encourage them to do so.
If you are telling these employees that they don’t have any chance of moving up in your company, they are not going to apply themselves and will probably always be looking for a better job to move on to.
Instead of having apathetic workers who are sifting through online job ads during their lunch breaks, let them know that they will be able to advance and get rewarded if they work hard.
Treat Them Equally
When we are talking about treating part-time employees equally, we are not just talking about wages. They should feel like they are a part of the team at all times.
If you offer your full-time employees free lunch and beverages, be sure to do the same for part-time workers. And if you are having a company Christmas party, be sure to invite everyone, part-timers included.
They should also be involved in team meetings. Leaving them out of these types of corporate events can lead to them feeling underappreciated and unimportant.
Recognize Their Unique Situations
In most cases, people who work part-time jobs are working them because they have to, not because they want to. You need to be sensitive to their situations and understand any special needs they might have.
Many part-time workers might have another job to go to before or after they enter your office. There’s a good chance that they are struggling financially more than your full-time employees.
Perhaps they can only work part-time because they need to take care of an elderly family member or a young child.
Recognize that they might have special circumstances that they are dealing with, and try to find ways to help them out whenever possible and accommodate their special needs.
Give Them Their Own Workspace
Be sure to make room in your office for your part-time workers. Give them their own cubicles or desks where they can keep their things and work from every day.
There’s nothing worse for the employee than having to drift from desk to desk every day and look to see which cubicle is open before starting to work. Once again, this makes them feel as if they are not part of the team.
Be sure to provide them with a sense of continuity by giving them their own workspace.
If you are already encouraging your part-time employers to succeed and advance in your company, you should also be giving them the tools they need to do so.
It’s important to offer training to your entire staff and keep them learning. Of course, an introductory course before they start working would be beneficial as well. Let them understand what their duties are and what is expected of them.
And once they are fully integrated into your team, keep encouraging them to learn new skills and gain new knowledge through training courses and personal instruction.
As mentioned previously, part-time workers tend to have a lot of other things on their plates. So if it is at all possible, try to give them a consistent work schedule. It might not always be possible, but whenever it is, your part-time employees should have a stable employee schedule so that they can organize the rest of their lives around it.
It’s best to ask them during the interview process what type of shifts they would prefer. Learn as much as you can about them.
Ask them if they have children that they need to pick up from school or if they have another job that they need to get to. And if you do need to switch up their schedules, be sure to give them enough notice so that they can do what they need to do in order to prepare for working a different shift.
Part-time employees need to be treated as well as full-time employees are treated. If you invest in them the same way in which you invest in your other team members, you will be rewarded with quality work and loyalty.
Managing part-time employees requires you to make some adaptations, but putting in the work needed to make these workers feel at home will definitely pay off for you and your company in the long run.