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Ok, So The Honeymoon Is Over With The New Job. Now What?

April 30th, 2019 | Posted by ATS in Benefit Accruals | Career | Employee Productivity | Employee Self Service | Time and Attendance Blog, Workforce Management Software - (Comments Off on Ok, So The Honeymoon Is Over With The New Job. Now What?)

Starting a new job often comes with a wave of new excitement, meetings are new and fresh and your boss is patient, supportive and positive. Your motivation and energy level may be higher than they have been for a long time. And, for many employees, happiness is at its highest point during the first six months with a new employer because of it.

As time passes, your motivation decreases. You begin, to doubt the company’s goals and ways of doing business, and worse you start to disagree with your boss. In the past you were keen about sharing ideas with the company, but now you keep those ideas to yourself. You also begin to realize that you cannot change your boss or this company anyway, so what’s the point? Meetings are useless and annoying as far as you are concerned.

In an article titled, This is how to stay fulfilled at your job, even as the years goby Jillian Kramer, from Glassdoor are six tips for those who have become disillusion with their jobs after a period of time. These tips include:


1. Switch things up

You may have to do the same things, but try not to do them the same ways. “Try to work on different tasks or use different strengths in your job instead of always doing the same thing in the same order,” Crawford says. “Using different strengths are important to fulfillment.”

2. Become a mentor

According to millennial career coach Jill Jacinto, “Sometimes it helps to pay it forward to remind yourself why you fell in love with your career when you did. Helping someone with her career will energize you and give you a chance to learn from a younger generation too.”

3. Learn something new

Before boredom–and dissatisfaction–can set in, it’s time to learn something new, says Crawford. “Take an online course or learn about new software that would be beneficial to your line of work,” she says. “Stay up to date. Staying in the know helps keeps you sharp.”

4. Network with others

“Sometimes meeting with fresh faces can inspire you,” says Jacinto. So, attend a conference, reach out to your LinkedIn network, or send an email to a former co-worker. “Sharing your career story and hearing [another] perspective can help spur creativity and partnerships.”

5. Talk with your boss

It might be easy to wait for annual performance reviews to talk to your boss. But don’t, says Crawford. “Let them know your professional goals, and ask to take on new projects and for feedback about your overall performance,” she says. “They will keep you in mind, and plus, this provides the opportunity to work on tasks that contribute to your overall happiness.”

6. Practice self-care

“Self-care is very important and something that is too often dismissed,” says Jacinto. And so, to stay happy at work, “make sure that work isn’t getting in the way or preoccupying your thoughts–take that beach vacation, attend weekly Pilates classes, get a massage, or go on a hike. By regularly making self-care a part of your routine, you are allowing yourself to check out, but also to feel refreshed and inspired for when you get back to the office.”

Bottom line, while the responsibility lies on the shoulder of employers to make sure they have a happy and productive workforce, you can also be proactive if you are not happy at your job. Sometimes it’s just figuring out what attracted you to the job in the first place and whether you can rekindle the initial wave of excitement you had for the job, when you started. That said, when a job becomes unbearable, to the point that you are not looking forward to it each day-a wholesome change like finding a new job, might be your best bet.

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Want To Know If Your Passion For Work Equates To Being A Workaholic?

April 2nd, 2019 | Posted by ATS in Absence Management | Benefit Accruals | Career | Employee Productivity | Employee Self Service | Time and Attendance Blog, Workforce Management Software - (Comments Off on Want To Know If Your Passion For Work Equates To Being A Workaholic?)

Some of us really love our jobs to the point of being passionate about it and that’s ok. However, it’s when our job becomes an obsession and everything else in our lives becomes secondary to it, that’s when you know, or at least should know, there is a problem. You can still love your job and make time for family and friends and request time-off.  

Here are some useful tips from an article titled, (5 Signs You’re Addicted To Work) by Priyansha Mistry that can help you determine if you are a workaholic.

1) “When you always spend much more time than allocated working.

It’s understandable that some days will require extra time to beat deadlines. This is a different case when you always spend time not allocated to working with a fear of failing. Doing so means you are allowing your work to cheaply override other important things in your life, that’s a sign of work addiction.

2) If you have neglected advise from others to cut down working hours.

A behavior noticed by more than two persons independently is not likely a false recognition. The individuals asking you to cut down working hours are seeing your attitude at work than you do.

3) You hate being prohibited at work

If you can’t have a moment without thinking about how to contribute at work, taking your work materials to vacations, feel you are missing out each time you have to spend a day or hours of work doing something else, you are probably addicted to work. It’s becoming a drug that makes you function.

4) You think of how you can free up more time to work

This means you are willing to de-prioritize your hobbies, cut down time you should spend with your family or anything else to give you extra time for work. Something is not normal; you may be dealing with work addiction.

5) You work too much that it has affected your health

This is a terrible situation difficult to realize and gradually take the victims down. It could be psychological or even physical health. If you’re the type that will sit for too long knowing it’s not good for your spine and still wish to sacrifice it to get so much done regularly, there’s a red flag. If you can observe a little change in your health as a result of extra contributions you’re making at work, there’s a big chance you’re a workaholic”.

Some of us spend more time at work than anywhere else, so it goes without saying, that it should be a factor in our happiness. That said, work should not be the only place where we derive all our happiness.

Do you identify with any of above-mentioned signs? If so, it might be time to book that vacation that you have been putting off for a couple of years.  

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Many of today’s mid and small size businesses understand the benefits of using modern-day business applications to drive productivity. And, while some of these businesses see a return on investment, because they start using the systems right away, others either delay their implementations, due in part, to unforeseen circumstances or simply because they do not have the sufficient personnel on staff to take steer the project. In reality, these delays in using the applications are no fault of these companies.

A recent article by Sarah Fister Gale for workforce.com Why SMBs Are Buying — But Not Using — HR Tech provides some insight into the reasons why this tends to happen.

“Small and midsized businesses may be investing in more HR technology, but they aren’t making good use of it, and that’s a shame. A new survey from HRIS provider BerniePortal found that while 64 percent of small and midsized businesses use HR software, few are using technology to manage the full scope of HR”.

Here are some immediate benefits that can be derived by using the business productivity solution that your company recently purchased:

Gain a single view of your workforce by: Leveraging data and HR analytics with greater speed and ease when making business decisions. ATS TimeWorkOnDemand HR analytics solutions for small and mid-size businesses, provide data-driven insight across the entire companyand simplifies workforce planning to help eliminate errors that impede business success.

Reduce business complexity with: 21st century data collectors that captures and reports information in real-time through payroll, thus providing user-friendly tools that help your employees work more efficiently and support your business as it grows.

Eradicate stress by maximizing workforce visibility: with ATS HCM cloud-based workforce management software. Consolidate all employee information into a single system, automate employee intuitive dashboards and manager workflows, facilitate, and develop, data-driven HR strategies.

The article goes on to say; “For very small companies just beginning the HR software journey, LaRocque encouraged them to start with core HR solutions. “You want to get payroll, benefits, time and attendance, and paid time off in order, and there are a lot of platforms designed to help small companies do all that,” he said. “Then you can start looking at purpose-built solutions to meet your specific workforce needs.”

The HR problems a company faces will determine the kinds of tools they should deploy — but they shouldn’t delay. “If you think you don’t have time for technology you’ve got your head in the sand,” he said. The time savings that HR leaders achieve by automating laborious HR tasks make these tools immediately worth the investment, especially for small companies with under-staffed HR teams”.

Bottomline-if you have taken the time to invest in the technology, your company will realize a return on investment (ROI) if you are engaged from inception to completion.

To learn more about ATS HCM Workforce Management Solution, go to our website. You can also download a demo, or you can attend one of our bi-weekly webinars. And, to reach an account executive, call 866.294.2467.

For many Canadian business leaders and decision-makers who want to improve their business performance and employee experience, ATS HCM Workforce Management Suite was designed to handle that task and power full-service HR offered by our Workforce Optimization workflow solution. ATS HCM Workforce Management cloud computing application helps companies to reap the full benefits of these tools and —supports people-driven business objectives. So, whether your business has 50 or 3000 employees, here is what you can expect of ATS HCM Workforce Management Suite:

Employee Onboarding and Administration-An integrated and robust cloud application built from the ground-up that enables workflow into a single source, solution that will increase efficiency and productivity.

Online HR Tools- With HR tools like benefits administration and employee self-service, employee no longer have to hand in manual time-off requests, instead they can go online and submit their vacation, requests, view their working hours and overtime.

Management Dashboard-The management dashboard provides unparallel visibility into critical workforce management intelligence, allowing you to stay on top of workforce trends and make informed decisions. You are too busy to waste time with manual processes — now you can instantly view your data without the need to build reports or export data.

Time and Attendance- Just about had enough of these spreadsheets? We get it. With ATS TimeWorkOnDemand, you get employee data in real-time, using anyone of our data collectors that include: Face Recognition, Biometric Time Clock, Web Punch or through any mobile device 24/7 365 days a year.

ATS HCM Workforce Management Suite has bevy of new and enhanced features, functionality, and user experience that’s based on today’s most innovative technology.

Want to know more? You can download a demo and see it in action for yourself, or you can attend one of our bi-weekly webinars. And, to reach an account executive, call 866.294.2467.

How To Alleviate Stress From Your Everyday Worklife

January 21st, 2019 | Posted by ATS in Absence Management | Benefit Accruals | Careers | Employee Productivity | Time and Attendance Blog, Workforce Management Software - (Comments Off on How To Alleviate Stress From Your Everyday Worklife)

Eliminating stress from your work entirely is a nice goal, but of course, we all know that’s not really possible. Some stress is good because, it propels us to complete projects that might otherwise, go unfinished.

There are also a number of ways one can decrease stress at work, some of which might include; taking the occasional break, not working 10 hours or more a day, taking vacation time, and not responding to work emails after hours or on weekends.

Vikki Ledbetter article, article titled 3 steps to a work detoxoffers some tips on the importance of taking a break from the everyday grind. These steps include:

“1. Prepare: Look at your calendar and move meetings. Think about commitments the week following your time out and alert relevant people that you’ll be unavailable. And, of course, communicate your time off as early as possible so your team isn’t caught off guard.

Planning can also illuminate opportunities to train others and give them a chance to try something new, as well as highlight holes in documentation for how you do what you do. Developing tutorials or even one-pagers on your work processes can serve you and your team well long term.

2. Set boundaries: With a physical detox, there are some strict no-nos to your diet, right? Likewise, with a work detox you’ll have to ensure you’re not welcoming stimulants that cause you unrest. There aren’t a lot of occasions where you truly can’t be reached, despite what your out of office message may say. But that doesn’t mean you should be available at all times.

3. Take in the good stuff: Now it’s time to focus on what you can do during your break to kickstart your work detox and leave you feeling refreshed. Make time for hobbies and people that make you happy, and the earlier the better. If you love hiking, schedule it for the first half of your day so you are, in some ways, forced to disconnect from work. If you enjoy writing, set aside time to take yourself on a coffee date for just you and your journal.”

If you have included things like working less and not taking on too many projects as part your New Year goals, good for you. And, if not perhaps this might be something you can add to your list of goals. Hopefully, we still have not abandoned those New Year resolutions yet?

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Have You Started Thinking About New Year’s Resolutions For 2019?

December 28th, 2018 | Posted by ATS in Benefit Accruals | Employee Productivity | Time and Attendance Blog, Workforce Management Software - (Comments Off on Have You Started Thinking About New Year’s Resolutions For 2019?)

Now that all the shopping, eating and family festivities are all done, here comes the tradition of New Year resolutions that we will hear a lot about in the first few weeks of 2019. And, in the world of business, increasing sales, will likely top the list of things that most businesses, both small and large will have on their to-do list.

Mike Maddock’s list of Ten Resolutions The Most Successful People Make And Then Keep at Forbes.com is quite handy if your company is compiling its own list.

Those resolutions are:

1.Spend more time on the not-to-do list
Strategy is the art of sacrifice. That’s why you may consider creating a larger clearing for what really matters by first identifying, and then avoiding, what matters the least. Your time is a treasure to be invested. Creating a list of things that you are not going to do, allows you to invest more of your treasured time on the few things that matter the most.

2. Essential first, email second
What’s the first thing you do in the morning? For many of us, it is looking at email. We wake up with a renewed mind and spirit, ready to take on the world, and then we immediately allow ourselves to be distracted by an insignificant email. Instead, wake up,take on the most important task of the day, and then (and only then) hit the email

3.Resolve to think about “Who” instead of “What”
Do you work for a “What” business or for a “Who” business? Successful companies run the risk of focusing too much on their current products and distributors thus—the “What”—losing sight of the constant and dramatically changing needs of their customer base. (The “Who.”) Insurance, pharma, health care, higher education often listen too much to their agents, doctors and professors. The real innovation starts with the end consumer.

4. Resolve to find your purpose
As my friend Simon Sinek will tell you: People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. Starting a career, a company or any kind of journey that is based firmly on your purpose is foundational to success and happiness. If you don’t know your company’s purpose or even your own, finding one is the worthiest of resolutions.

5. Resolve to support a cause
If you’re reading this, chances are you are one of the rare people who know how to start things. Fortunately, there are people like you who have already started causes that make the world better—they feed the hungry; they save the rain forest; they fight cancer; they do good things. There is virtually a cause for everyone, and contributing will make your year happier. Promise.

6. Resolve to invent more choices
Here’s a secret that happy people know that I learned from my friend Dr. Dan Baker: You can’t feel grateful and fearful at the same time. And one certain way to become afraid is to feel trapped by any situation. The remedy is choice. The more choices you feel you have, the less trapped—and happier—you will feel. So this year, resolve to do a bit of brainstorming every time you feel unhappy.

7. Resolve to find a Yin for your Yang 
Walt Disney had Roy Disney, Steve Jobs had Steve Wozniak and Orville Wright had Wilbur Wright. Wherever there is great innovation, there is a Dreamer and an Operator; an Idea Monkey and a (Ring) leader. First, determine where your passions lie, then go find an equally passionate partner, then go change the world.

8. Resolve to get outside your jar 
You can’t read the label when you are sitting inside the jar. The sad irony of being an expert is that it keeps you from seeing possibility. After all, you know what works, what doesn’t, what you can afford, what’s been tried in the past. Instead of relying only on your expertise, learn how to find other experts solving similar challenges to the ones you are facing. Go ask them what you may be missing.

9. Resolve to be the creator
What is the outcome you want? What stands in your way? How do you overcome these obstacles? These three simple questions will keep you from being victimized by any situation. Creators change the world. Victims just bitch about stuff.

10. Plan vacations (now)
You have probably heard the saying, “Life is what happens when you are not paying attention.” Unfortunately for many of us, we let this become true. Do yourself a favor and plan your vacations for the next year today. I promise you that the days around your vacation will fill in nicely. I also promise you that you’ll have something to look forward to and the life that happens during your vacations will be precious.

The stats on how often people keep up with New Year’s resolutions are dismal, at best. Part of the reason why most people don’t live up to their New Year’s goals, are because, those goals are too unrealistic to begin. So, perhaps part of New Year’s resolution list should include a step, by step guide on how to reach each goal or target?

Happy New Year!

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Now that we’re into the month of December and the holiday season has kicked into full gear, here’s a question just about every manager probably has on their mind: Just how much work am I getting out of my employees this month, anyway?

Well, regardless of your religious affiliation the end-of-the-year holiday season impacts every workplace, and every worker, whether it’s retail, manufacturing, or healthcare. And, as someone who manages people, you probably only too well, that your employees will likely be distracted and stressed at this time of the year.

This article from Entrepreneur and Glassdoor titled 7 Ways to Manage Employee HolidayTime Off’ is a useful guide for any manager:

1. Plan in advance: Many industrial businesses have their holiday schedule planned well in advance, and there’s no reason any type of business can’t do that either. According to Brian Koniuk, a principal at the HackettGroup, manufacturers typically require employees to plan out their vacation for the coming year so they know in January who is working what holiday and who is off for the entire year. In other industries, like health care, Koniuk says schedules are made three to five months in advance.

 2. First come, first served: If you are running a business that is busy during the holidays or needs to be staffed 24/7 year-round, one way to prevent employees from taking off in large numbers is to limit the amount and give workers off on a first come, first served basis, says Pat Sweeney, human resource manager at Old Colony Hospice and Palliative Care. “If they know they are going to want to be off over the holidays they know they have to ask for the time off way in advance,” says Sweeney. She says that starting as early as September supervisors can notify the staff that requests for time off have to be made as soon as possible. Hand in hand with a first come, first served policy is capping the number of people that can take off during the holidays.

 3. Stagger the schedule: You may not be able to keep a full staff during the holidays, but that doesn’t mean you have to close early or provide a reduced level of service. To combat that, Kathy Harris, managing director of recruiting firm Harris Allied, says to stagger your employee vacation scheduling. For instance, you can have someone work in the morning during the holidays and another worker take the afternoon shift. Another option: have one employee work Monday and Tuesday and another Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The idea behind a staggered employee vacation schedule is to always have coverage, and at the same time, give employees time off during the holidays.

4. Keep a pool of part-timers: If you are operating a business that picks up during the holiday season, or you know a lot of your staff will be gone during that time, it’s a good idea to keep a pool of part-timers that you can tap when you need extra help, says Gary Should is, a small business consultant, coach and owner of a gymnastics center. “We have a pool of part-timers that we know can work the holidays,” says Should is. “Whenever we hit the holiday period or periods where we lose part of our staff they come on.” According to Should is, it’s a good idea to keep in contact with these part-timers year-round so you’ll know their availability ahead of time. Another option is to post a job in anticipation for holiday hiring.

5. Offer a holiday pay differential: For some people money talks even if it means they won’t be with their family during the holidays, which is why offering a holiday pay differential can keep your business staffed. According to Sweeney, it should be something that is part of the company’s structure and not something you offer just to entice an employee not to take off. “If you’re in a business you know there are a lot of requests for time off you can have some differential built in,” she says.

 6. Institute a vacation blackout period: For some businesses, particularly retail, the holidays are the busiest time for them, which means they need a full staff if not more. If your business falls into this category, a way to prevent employees from taking off is to have a blackout period where no one can take off, says Tanios. If an employee wants off during a blackout period he or she would need to ask well in advance, and it would be at the manager’s discretion, says Tanios. It’s a good idea to inform employees from the beginning of the blackout policy so they aren’t blindsided come holiday time.

 7. Let employees work at home: These days pretty much everybody has a laptop, iPad or smartphone that enables them to work remotely. If your staff doesn’t have to be on site, letting them work at home during the holidays can be a productive way to get things done without having to bring in additional staff. Working at home is a viable option only if the business lends itself to it and there’s away to ensure the employees are actually working. “In this day and age working from a virtual office anywhere is possible,” says Sweeney.

Bottom-line: During the holiday season, employees are likely dreaming of cozying up in Christmas sweaters with their egg-nogs or just dreading that visit from relatives that they see only once a year. Employees will be stressed out enough as it is, anything you can do as their manager to bring joy, could increase productivity and yes, profit to the bottom line.

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This past Sunday, November 4, 2018, at 2:00 a.m., daylight savings time occurred with many provinces and states across the US setting their clocks one hour back. And, every year, a growing chorus of health professionals, bemoans the need for this and, like many of us, ask why is it we simply don’t get rid of daylight savings time altogether.

Here is an excerpt from a recent article with some compelling reasons to ditch this yearly ritual, by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) titled Eight scientific reasons to ditch daylight time:

  1. You are eight per cent more likely to have a stroke for two days after changing your clocks.
  2. You are also 24 per cent more likely to have a heart attack the Monday after (and 21 per cent on the Tuesday)
  3. Suicide rates in men increase for two weeks after the clocks change.
  4. Judges give harsher legal sentences the day after switching to daylight time
  5. Losing that hour of sleep increases workplace injuries, and the injuries themselves are much more severe.
  6. You’re also more likely to get into a car crash. In fact, this researcher estimates that over the years, 30 fatalities have been caused by the time change.
  7. Daylight time can lead to a dramatic increase in ‘cyberloafing.’
    In adolescents, it can take over a week to adjust to the change, losing an average of 32 minutes of sleep per night, which messes with their memory and reaction time.

Bottom line: Daylight savings time has served its purpose, whatever purpose it was. Lost productivity and sleepy eyed employees is not exactly what employers expect in their organization. Maybe that’s why the European Union is considering doing away daylight savings time in 2019.

Bottom line: Daylight savings time has served its purpose, whatever purpose that was. Lost productivity and sleepy eyed employees is not exactly what employers expect in their organization. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why the European Union is considering doing away daylight savings time in 2019.

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3 Tips to Help Your Company Embrace a BYOD at Work

September 26th, 2018 | Posted by ATS in Employee Productivity | HR | SmartPhones | Time and Attendance Canada | Time and Attendance Toronto - (Comments Off on 3 Tips to Help Your Company Embrace a BYOD at Work)

Bring your own device (BYOD) concept, has been gaining in popularity for several years and some companies have implemented them with varying degrees of success within their organizations. If your company is considering implementing it, make sure you understand both the pros and cons that come along with it.

3 Tips to Help Your Company Embrace a BYOD at Work

Here are three tips from Jane Harper’s article titled Creating an Effective Cell Phones at Work Policy

“Employee cell phone policy must be consistent: Policies are more prone to collapse when a group of employees are living above them or observing a different version of it. You don’t want to bring in misunderstandings, resentment among team members or be accused of unfair treatment – enemies of productivity. Keeping the policy consistent regardless of sexual orientation, race, age, level, etc, is what makes it effective.

Specify the smart devices employees can use: Is there no need for some smart devices to be allowed? Your policy will be ineffective if it restricts only cell phones. That means employees can bring in personal tablets or similar smart devices to still create the problem you are trying to avoid by limiting cell phones. The policy should categorically state the personal technology permitted during the time of restriction.

Consider safety, security, and privacy: While creating an employee cell phone policy, there is a need to consider safety, security, and privacy. Presenting your policy as a means to only stop employees from work time theft or to only maintain productivity level is not totally ideal. Employees should understand the dangers of using devices while operating machinery or driving. It should be clear that downloading infected attachments on their personal devices could shut down the entire office if passed into to the office network”.

Bring your own device concept (BYOD) will not work for all companies. Because, while the costs will likely be borne by the employee, in such a situation, what happens when that employee leaves the company? It’s obvious that the company the will want the data, and if there is no policy that was drafted to deal with this, it could end up being a bad break-up between employer and employee.

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To learn more, register for one of our weekly webinars, or download brochures or a pre-recorded demonstration. To speak to a representative, call; 866.294.2468.

The traditional way of work is on its way out and is not coming back, much to angst of some. Many North Americans, in particular, millennials are ditching the traditional approach to work which usually involves driving one or two hours to an office. Today’s workers and are instead looking for companies that offer flexible work options and if yours does not, good luck in attracting a range of talent.

Here Are Three Ways To Keep Your Remote Workers Engaged

If your company has embraced the new way of work and has a remote workforce, you probably know it can sometimes be hard to make sure they feel part of the team.  Here are three ways to keep your remote workforce engaged:

  1. Consistently Communicate

A consistent line of communication between you and your remote team members is vital to ensuring workers are engaged, getting the work done are motivated. Occasionally e-mail your remote workers during the day or schedule one or two phone call during the course of the day. Not only does this help them to feel part of the team, it also means you are always accessible and this can help to avoid problems.

  1. Made Good Use of Technology

The latest workforce management solutions and HR applications can help with remote employee engagement.  In addition, cloud-based tools like Skype can provide your company and its remote workers to access a variety of presentations, or obtain important HR and data related information-thus, ensuring team members can remain up to date with the latest and most critical information wherever they are.

  1. Share Feedback

Include your remote workers in important decisions that are part of your company’s overall strategy and/or growth plans. When remote workers are not included in the decisions then can quickly become disengage, and begin to can feel unsupported and unsure of how much their efforts are appreciated by the company. As an organization, you should have faith that your remote staff can work independently and meet operational objectives.

If you work in the white-collar world, you will undoubtedly end up working with or supervising a telecommuting workforce at some point. How you handle remote workers will vary according to whether they work from home in the suburbs a dozen miles away, a few provinces or states away, or in another country.

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