Today’s Editorial August 23: Taking care of employees

Human resource professionals in the Cayman Islands have seen an alarming trend.

Less than 50 per cent of the total workforce in the Cayman Islands is Caymanian.

The problem is twofold; the economy of this country is growing at a quick pace and the Caymanian population growth rate is in a decline.

But there is a glimmer of light in this otherwise dark cloud that hangs over the employment figures.

Seeing the trend, human resource professionals are prepared to help businesses do something about it.

It all has to do with how employers treat their employees and how employees must empower themselves.

Employers must – if they don’t already – encourage upward mobility of the local workforce.

This can be done in a variety of ways, but one of the best is to ensure that the local workforce is kept up to pace with the dynamics and needs of their companies.

It’s about taking care of the whole person, not just the one who shows up from 9 to 5 Monday through Friday to do a job.

Employers must begin to take stock of the emotional ability of the local workforce and create a working climate that nurtures all employees and encourages them to succeed.

An enthusiastic employee will want to improve business performance, which will in turn lead to economic development.

To keep up, employees must update their skills continuously, either through company programmes or through private means.

Improvements in the workplace can lead to increased job satisfaction and morale among employees as well as increased employee motivation.

Better prepared employees will see increased efficiencies in processes, resulting in financial gain and an increased capacity to adopt new technologies and methods.

Proper development of employees will also lead to increased innovation in strategies and a reduction in employee turnover.

And properly developing employees certainly won’t hurt your corporate image, either.

So while the news seems bleak for now, there are things that employees and employers can do to retain and attract the local workforce in the Cayman Islands.

It just takes a little team effort.