With the lowest unemployment rate in the United States in 18 years, at 3.7%, companies looking to hire are facing tight competition for top talent. This “candidate driven” hiring environment is especially evident for companies in the tech sector, where unemployment is closer to 1.9%. As companies work to recruit and retain employees, a strong workplace culture is no longer a “nice to have” but a business necessity. Company culture can make a critical difference as to whether employees choose to work, and stay, at a company. It also impacts employee productivity, how teams collaborate, and whether employees feel included, respected, and recognized—which enables them do their best work.
Office culture is especially important to millennials, who now make up the majority of the workforce. In the Deloitte Millennial Survey, 52% of respondents listed office culture as "very important" when choosing a place to work. However, culture goes beyond a surface level veneer of “perks” and employee amenities, and also impacts whether employees feel connected, included, and heard at work.
When employees feel like their voices and contributions are recognized and they can make an impact at a company, they are more likely to stay in their jobs. Retention is especially critical, as it costs about $7,645 to hire a new employee, according to a study by the National Association of Colleges and Employers. Replacing an employee also means a loss of productivity, as it takes about 20 to 26 weeks to get a new hire up to speed, during which a company loses 1% to 2.5% of their revenue according to a study by Mellon Financial Corporation.
At its base, workplace culture is an extension of your company’s mission and values and to have an impact, every cultural activity and initiative should be connected to them. Workplace culture expert Vanessa Shaw, founder of the Human Side of Tech, explained, “Culture isn’t a silo, but an ecosystem. Everything is connected.”
Activities and initiatives to build company culture include:
- Mission and values driven events for team bonding
- Recognizing and celebrating employees’ achievements
- Professional development and learning opportunities
- Company policies that support different working styles and employee needs
- Workplace perks your team actually wants
Building a coherent culture that your employees love is an essential component of your company’s success, but it can be challenging to know where to start and how to balance culture building with operational tasks and other business priorities.
To help company leaders, office operations teams, and people and culture professionals create a coherent, desirable company culture at Managed by Q we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to building workplace culture.
This guide provides actionable advice for those who are charged with the critical role of creating and scaling company culture, including how to clarify your mission, plan events that mirror your values, communicate effectively with your team, and decide what cultural initiatives to prioritize based on your company size and budget. It also includes a checklist to simplify planning and budgeting for workplace cultural activities.