How to recruit for a more engaged, healthy and productive workforce in 2018

23 Jan How to recruit for a more engaged, healthy and productive workforce in 2018

In 2018, leaders must prepare to overcome new hurdles in recruitment and employee engagement. From automation to robotics and the Gig Economy, the next wave of disruption is coming – and it will have a significant impact on recruitment.

In the face of disruption, The World Economic Forum lists emotional and social intelligence skills in the top 10 skills for the future workforce [1]. However, FuturePeople’s Recruitment Trends Report 2017/2018 found that 1 in 5 managers are not investing time and resources into these areas [2]. Further, while employee wellbeing may be a strategic priority, investing in technology- enabled interventions that improve the emotional wellbeing of employees is not apparent.

For many organisations today, the biggest cost is recruiting, developing and engaging employees. A large portion of managers don’t get recruitment right because they don’t fully understand the psychological factors that drive high performance.

When you approach recruitment from a human perspective, focusing on the underlying values, personality traits and capabilities that drive both performance and engagement – that’s how you really get ‘fit’ right. And when you truly care about your team and look after individual needs, your people will be more engaged, productive and motivated to succeed.

Workplaces today and in the future will thrive on agility, creativity and collaboration. To achieve this, managers need to recruit for and develop a more engaged, healthy and productive workforce that can adapt to change and bounce back from challenges.

Below are 3 key strategies for achieving this great outcome.

1. Embrace technology and digital. Keep ahead of technology trends, digitalise recruitment processes to improve the candidate experience and don’t be afraid to try something new. Embracing technology and digital will give your organisation a reputation as a forward-thinking and exciting place to work. Leverage Big data and machine learning to understand the psychological traits of your high performers. You can then recruit more of the same and predict success.

2. Recruit for Emotional Fitness and resilience. Evaluate Emotional Fitness in the recruitment process to recruit talent that have the emotional and social intelligence skills and resilience to thrive in the modern workplace and build effective relationships. Emotional Fitness is a new type of competency that ensures people can produce positive social outcomes, such as fostering trust, solving problems and building strong connections with others.

3. Invest in developing Emotional Fitness for employee wellbeing. Emotional Fitness doesn’t come naturally to everyone. Just like physical fitness, it’s a skillset that can be nurtured and developed over time. Train your people up with the emotional and social intelligence skills to thrive, and they will enjoy greater emotional wellbeing at work, form better relationships with others, and become more adaptable and productive.

An Absence Management Survey by Direct Health Solutions found that employee absenteeism costs the Australian economy $33 billion in lost productivity year each [3]. By investing in Emotional Fitness, you can enhance the customer experience, company culture and employee engagement, equipping your employees with the resilience to effectively deal with stress.

An Emotionally Fit workplace starts with recruiting people with the baseline level of emotional and social intelligence required to thrive in the modern workforce. To build an Emotionally Fit workforce, managers must recruit and develop talent who are highly engaged, healthy and productive. At the same time, organisations need to invest in employee wellbeing programs and adopt new technologies that help employees to work more efficiently.


[1] The 10 skills you need to thrive in the fourth industrial revolution

[2] Recruitment Trends Report 

[3] Chucking a sickie costs Australian businesses $33 billion a year: Study