Terminating a position or letting an employee go is a task that few enjoy, be it the employee or the manager. Sometimes a worker is let go without controversy, but mass layoffs tend to be complex situations. When the dust settles, managers often ask themselves, “How could I have done that better?” Don’t wait until after a sticky employment situation occurs to have a plan in place for handling layoffs. The recruitment professionals at CCS Construction staffing have experience with the whole process, from planning to hiring to payroll services. Here are our top five tips for handling layoffs in a way that won’t fan the flames.
#1 Keep a paper trail
Whether you’re laying off one employee or several, keeping a paper trail can help justify your decision. Even in a time of strict company layoffs, contractors, job site managers and business owners will strive to keep their best workers. Documenting your crew members’ successes and challenges will help make those tough decisions easier when the time comes.
#2 Show a little empathy
Sometimes layoffs are dictated not by employee performance, but because of other uncontrollable factors, such as a weak economy or underfunding. In those cases, managers and supervisors need to have compassion for the workers they are forced to let go. Showing genuine remorse for the situation can stabilize and smooth out any heightened emotional response the employee might have.
#3 Address any contractual agreements or legal concerns
Are your workers protected by unions? Do you have contractual agreements with your HVAC professionals, electricians or skilled laborers? When faced with layoffs, managers need to have a solid understanding of employee rights. A thorough examination of the contracts and consequences can help prevent any potential legal issues from rising.
#4 Choose the right time and do it face to face
Timing a layoff isn’t just about the employees you’re letting go, but also about the morale building that needs to occur for those remaining. Shoot for the morning, around the middle of the week. This way you have time to address the concerns of your remaining crew members. Be sure to conduct the process in a private, face-to-face sit down, so that you can better control the situation.
#5 Be open with your other employees
When layoffs happen, everyone gets scared, and that fear can really bog down morale and productivity. Talk with the employees being terminated first, then address the rest of your crew immediately after. Let them ask questions, vent frustrations and be as transparent and honest as you can. You’ll want to deal right away with those who are most upset by the downsizing to prevent any paranoia or hate speech from spreading through the job site.
From job sites to construction corporate offices, temporary to permanent positions, the experienced recruiters at CCS Construction Staffing understand the specific employment challenges your industry faces. We will take a strategic approach to your staffing needs, making sure that your crew is comprised of the most qualified candidates. If you need to take a critical look at your hiring process, contact us today!