Imagine this: You are an HR leader at a fast-rising SME (Small and Medium enterprise) where the workforce is a mix of white-collar and blue-collar employees. And all your employees are on-time, display strong work ethics and religiously meet deadlines – without you having to oversee employee records round-the-clock.
This may sound like a dream. But, such a reliable work culture can be architected with a compelling onboarding program, active support from line managers and leaders and the right HR technology tools to empower you.
Today, HR leaders working in the SME space are navigating multiple critical workforce management issues – from statutory compliance and boosting effective working hours to payroll processing, just to name a few – all while simultaneously dealing with issues like correcting attendance records, manual inputs to payroll management and handling turnover. The challenge is compounded even further when the organisation enters periods of rapid growth.
Building a culture of self-accountability solves many challenges while also making a significant business impact. It also allows you, as an HR leader, to work on business-critical analysis that can make a dent in the topline instead of fire-fighting basic issues.
Steps to build a culture of self-accountability
Employee accountability is often dependent on the trust and transparency that you’re able to establish, and when you give employees control, they’re naturally motivated to contribute. Self-accountable employees take responsibility for their mistakes while contributing towards creating a positive and reliable work culture.
Set the right expectations
Clarity around the roles, responsibilities and performance expectations on self-accountability can help employees understand what is expected of them. Whether it is recording leave and attendance or reporting work hours, getting everyone aligned with organisational expectations is a crucial first step.
HR leaders themselves should demonstrate self-accountability in their own actions and behaviours. But more importantly, you need to ensure that there are communication channels that are always open to better understand challenges, seek clarity and give feedback when required. Leaders must always ensure that communication is a two-way street. Effective communication helps employees understand their responsibilities and fosters a sense of ownership.
Integrate the right technology solutions
First, identify which areas are critical to your SME to establish a culture of self-accountability. Then integrate technology into these areas.
Today’s technology provides transparency and gives managers and business leaders visibility of work management and self accountability. Technologies like Keka’s allow employees to plan their leave alongside work responsibilities. For example, when an employee who has unfinished work applies for leave, the portal would alert them about the pending tasks, forcing the employee to take-action. Do they need to finish the task first? Or do they need to assign it to someone else.
Technology can help track real-time attendance, access an easy leave dashboard of their team, and even raise regularisation requests instantly, ensuring that HR is not involved in fixing these issues. Keka’s technology, for example, can surface interesting data such as the average work hours of the team compared to the individual’s average work hours – that could motivate employees to build self-accountability.
Real time feedback tools:
Effective feedback is crucial for personal and professional growth, and HR tech tools have made it easier to provide timely feedback that fosters self-accountability. Real-time feedback tools facilitate instant recognition and constructive feedback between employees and managers or peers. Keka’s technologies empower individuals to proactively seek feedback and take ownership of their continuous improvement. By embracing this feedback culture, employees become more self-aware and accountable for their performance.
This is another area that can benefit from self-service. Self-appraisals are a crucial step in assessing workplace performance, primarily because it creates a two-way communication channel while fostering better work relationships. And this can be entirely technology-enabled. Additionally, employees can also give feedback, appreciate great work and track their goals.
Impact on learning:
The tools that empower employees to work effectively and boost workplace productivity and culture can also give key inputs on designing the individual learning roadmap. Companies that integrate learning tools to platforms like Keka can also boost the learning mandate for the individual employee thereby improving self-accountability. A number of inputs from goal setting and work management can be utilised to build the roadmap for learning.
Establish the right support mechanisms
Leaders play a vital role in setting the tone for self-accountability within an organisation. They should demonstrate accountability in their own actions and behaviours, consistently modelling the behaviour they expect from their employees. When leaders hold themselves accountable, it sets a powerful example and encourages employees to follow suit.
Managers and leaders should provide regular, timely, and constructive feedback to employees, highlighting areas of strength and areas for improvement. This feedback should be specific, actionable, and focused on individual growth and development. By offering guidance and support, employees can better assess their performance and hold themselves accountable for continuous improvement
Building a culture of self-accountability takes time and consistent effort. By implementing these strategies, organisations can create an environment where individuals are empowered to take ownership of their work, resulting in increased productivity, engagement, and overall success.