Survey: Employee morale, productivity down during recession

Chelmsford, Mass. A just-released survey from The Workforce Institute at Kronos has found that surviving employees are experiencing adverse effects from company layoffs.

The “Productivity Drain” survey, commissioned by The Workforce Institute at Kronos and conducted by Harris Interactive, revealed that 40% of respondents whose workplaces experienced layoffs in the past year feel that the overall productivity of their organization has been negatively impacted.

Thirty-six percent of respondents believe that when the economy picks up, as an organization, they will not be prepared to meet the increased demand, and 66% said that morale has suffered and people are less motivated.

Other findings included: 64% said that there is too much work and not enough people to do it; and 37% said the wrong people or departments were laid off, leaving inefficient systems and workflows.

Despite feeling overworked, a surprising 53% said they felt the right number of people were laid off at their organization. Thirty-two percent said they felt too many were laid off and 7% said not enough were laid off.

Employees also have some advice for employers on how to improve productivity in their workplace: 50% said employers should look for ways to improve morale; 46% said their employers have processes that should be automated to be more efficient; 36% said their organizations should invest in new technology to help manage productivity; and 36% of employees believe that organizations need to take a fresh look at how to redistribute the workload among those employees who are left.

“In the midst of a downturn like the one we are experiencing, the time is right for employers to re-examine existing practices, from how work is distributed among the organization to whether or not new hires need to be made,” said Joyce Maroney, director of The Workforce Institute, Kronos.

“As well, employers need to examine what kinds of technology might enable the workforce to become more productive. In this survey, we hear loud and clear from employees that these issues need to be addressed now, so that businesses are positioned for success when the economy kicks back into high gear.”

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