The importance of regular check-ins with employees

Regular employee check-ins bring a wealth of benefits to employees, managers, and the business at large. Whether you’re checking in with your staff virtually or in person, opening communication across all levels of your organisation has never been this vital—especially as the world of work continues to evolve at light speed to cope with the new needs of the workforce and the industries it pertains to.

In this article, we’ll first look at what an employee check-in is, the benefits regular check-in meetings with staff can bring to your business, and finally, how to check in with your employees.

What is an employee check-in?

Simply put, an employee check-in is a meeting during which managers and their direct reports can talk about any current projects, including any challenges they face. This sort of meeting is essential for managers to stay up to speed on the projects their team is working on and to provide them with the help they need to surpass any hurdles they’re facing.

For employees, this is an invaluable opportunity to voice and discuss any concerns they might have with their line managers. Especially at a time when employee resignations are at an all-time high, providing a safe space for employees to talk to their managers about the challenges they’re experiencing is crucial to nip any concerns in the bud and ultimately keep attrition rates low. With figures in PwC’s “Global Workforce Hopes and Fears Survey” showing that globally one in five workers may quit their jobs in 2022, holding on to your talent has become an important competitive differentiator. Plus, it can help you save eventual recruitment costs and time to hire too.

The benefits of regular check-ins with employee

Regular check-ins with your employees address a human need that might otherwise remain unfulfilled in the workplace. And that is, we all want to feel heard, respected, and appreciated. Feeling engaged and part of a broader community in the workplace can significantly impact an employee’s focus and productivity while creating a welcoming environment in which everyone feels supported and empowered to give their best.

Let’s look in more detail at the top 5 benefits of conducting regular check-ins:

  1. Improves employee engagement: With the rise of hybrid and remote work practices, keeping employees connected to their workplace has become a more significant challenge. While both setups bring immense value to businesses, it’s usually easier for employees to feel isolated and unsupported unless companies have policies to reduce the risk of this happening. With Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace showing that only 15% of employees are engaged in the workplace—setting up regular 1:1s, such as weekly or monthly check-ins with employees, can be part of a more comprehensive employee engagement strategy.
  2. Prevents miscommunication: Miscommunication is one of the leading causes of project delays and failures and is among the top causes that ruin business relationships. Regular check-ins mean additional opportunities to communicate, which can minimise the risk of miscommunication between employees and their line managers and employees and the business at large. Not all your staff members might feel comfortable enough to speak up when they haven’t understood an assignment. Having these sorts of meetings helps managers ensure their direct reports know what they’re supposed to be doing on the job and that nothing has been lost in translation.
  3. Boosts motivation: With improved employee engagement and better communication comes greater employee motivation! Even the best teams or employees need to be motivated at times, but when people are engaged and know exactly what they need to do at work, it’s likelier that they’ll feel valued and be willing to go that extra mile to help you reach your business goals. Plus, with regular check-ins on projects, it’s more likely that your employees will push for any short-term goals, knowing they’ll need to report back to their managers about their progress.
  4. Supports management growth: All employees, including managers, need to grow their skills in the workplace. By now, we’re all familiar with the phrase, “people leave managers, not companies.” And with Gallup finding that at least 70% of the variance in employee engagement scores across business units can be attributed to managers, giving ample opportunities for your management team to grow can make or break your business. And regular check-ins allow managers to understand how they can improve their management skills—whether through direct employee feedback or introspection.
  5. Reduces any end-of-year surprises: Yearly performance reviews are great. But if that’s the only opportunity you’re allowing employees to assess their performance or communicate any issues they might have, these reviews might become counterproductive. However, with weekly and monthly check-ins, employees and managers alike can better understand what to expect in their end-of-year reviews, reducing the risk of surprises and supporting steady employee growth.

How to check in with employees

An employee check-in shouldn’t feel like an inspection or an attempt to micromanage your staff! This is why managers should make sure they’re prepared to ensure these meetings are as productive as possible. So, ensure both parties know when the check-in will occur, so they have ample time to prepare. It might be worth booking a monthly appointment in their calendars to minimise the risk of these meetings getting lost in busy to-do lists! Once that is sorted, creating a checklist for employee check-in might be helpful for managers, as it ensures you’re covering all your bases. You can include things such as:

  • Goal or project updates
  • Any recent accomplishments
  • Company or team updates
  • Learning and development goals and status
  • Career development
  • Plan for the upcoming month/year
  • Concerns and challenges

What you include, how you discuss the above, and much more will largely depend on your business and your company culture and management style. You could consider inviting your hybrid and remote workers to join you in your office, as these reviews can serve as an occasion to bring your team together while making them more enjoyable for everyone involved.
Are you looking for an office solution that drives employee engagement and satisfaction?

At Avenue 77, we offer tailored office solutions, plug-and-play workspaces, and on-site recreational and retail services at Market 77—all of which can help give your business a competitive edge in today’s thriving hiring market. Contact us now to discover more.