Balancing employer and employee needs in the ever-changing workplace

Rob Squires, VP and Head of Sales for Asia and Japan, Dayforce, shares key findings from Dayforce’s 14th annual Pulse of Talent report.
By: | March 13, 2024

As we have come through the pandemic, many employees are telling us that their employer’s priorities are tipping too far out of balance, focusing too much on business needs without due consideration to employee needs.

The findings from Dayforce’s 14th annual Pulse of Talent report, which surveyed 8,751 employees at companies with at least 100 employees from around the world, showed that perceived imbalance has the potential to upend organisational performance. However, there are steps companies can take to bring what they need more in line with what their employees want.

One thing is obvious: change is rampant in today’s organisations, especially in Singapore. Among employees in the country, 92% say their company made organisational changes in the last year, compared to 81% globally, and that change is causing stress. For example, 77% of Singapore employees say more aggressive performance goals increased their stress, while 62% say a reduction in force or layoffs did.

This is leading to massive levels of burnout in Singapore. A full 92% of Singapore employees say they have experienced burnout in the past year, compared to 81% of workers globally, and it is causing them to look for a change. Despite uncertainty in many job markets given the economy, 68% of Singapore workers are a flight risk who are either looking for a new job or would be open to a new role if the right opportunity came along.

Lessening disparities

Change is part of the workplace experience, especially during times of economic uncertainty. But there are steps companies can take to mitigate negative impacts experienced by employees and help them to change to meet differing needs. Such transformation is beneficial to both worker and employer.

Dayforce’s research points to numerous things that can help:

Boost empathy. Half of Singapore employees said it would increase their job satisfaction if leaders showed more empathy and 41% said it would improve their mental health and burnout levels.

Improve communication. Only 42% of employees globally said their employer is good or excellent at communicating change. In any workplace, employees do better when they know what is changing, why it is changing, and how it impacts them.

“In any workplace, employees do better when they know what is changing, why it is changing, and how it impacts them.” – Rob Squires, VP and Head of Sales for Asia and Japan, Dayforce

Take actions to boost productivity. Having a better work life balance was cited by 45% of Singapore employees as key to boosting their productivity, followed by skills development (31%) and more flexibility in when they work (30%).

Deploy artificial intelligence. Workers in Singapore are enthusiastic about the potential to use AI as a productivity booster. Almost seven in 10 Singapore employees (69%) said AI would improve their productivity at work, compared to just 50% of workers globally. Singapore employees also stand out in terms of appreciating AI to help them improve their work lives. Nine in 10 (91%) say they would like AI to recommend internal career changes and skills development opportunities. That compares to 80% of workers globally and just 73% in the U.S.

Upgrade technology. This helped 83% of Singapore employees improve their productivity in the past year. That was the highest percentage of any region surveyed and it was much higher than the 69% of employees globally who said the same.

Leveraging technology to reduce stress

Tools and initiatives are readily available to help both sides of this equation meet the challenges of an ever-changing workplace and the needs of companies and employees who are both striving to compete.

Learning and development, for instance, will always be key to employee productivity, job satisfaction, and loyalty. Dayforce recently acquired eloomi, a leading learning experience platform software provider. The acquisition will equip Dayforce customers with enhanced L&D experiences, content created with help from AI, and enhanced learning capabilities, that will help organisations improve employee engagement.

READ MORE: Making work life better: The next step on the Dayforce journey

Dayforce is also implementing new features to elevate the user experience. Hyper-personalised features embed the AI-fueled Dayforce Co-Pilot to enhance AI-powered intelligence across the Dayforce environment. Meanwhile, Dayforce Career Explorer is an AI-powered solution that empowers employees to better manage their careers with access to data-driven career pathing, L&D opportunities, and notification of open jobs that match their interests and skills.

The 14th annual Pulse of Talent makes it clear: organisations need to carefully balance the needs of their business with their employees’ wants. Taking steps to alleviate burnout, engage and retain employees, and help them reach their full potential is critical to every company’s ability to meet changing needs.

About the author: Rob Squires is VP and Head of Sales for Asia and Japan at Dayforce. Join him at the CHRO Symposium on April 25 at 10am (SGT), where he will highlight how HR leaders can navigate and strike a balance between competing priorities to drive high performance. The CHRO Symposium is part of HR Tech Festival Asia 2024, organised by HRM Asia and taking place from April 24-25 at the Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre in Singapore.