Part Two: Mentorship is Key to Employee Satisfaction

In part two of our series, we will explore the key role mentorship has on improving engagement, employee satisfaction, and upskilling the team.

Achieving accounts receivable (AR) department KPI goals has been a difficult push over the last 2 years. Upheaval and stress have taken a toll on AR teams, and turnover stemming from the Great Resignation has challenged collections performance. With these massive shifts taking place, there has never been a better time to refocus on mentoring and coaching your AR team.

What is Employee Mentorship?

Simply put, “mentoring is a formal or informal relationship established between an experienced, knowledgeable employee and an inexperienced or new employee.” The purpose of a mentor is to help the new employee quickly absorb the organization’s cultural and social norms, or for an inexperienced employee to collaborate to build their skillset and grow towards identified long or short-term career goals. Some organizations pair new or blossoming employees informally, while others have a defined mentorship program.

A key purpose of a defined mentorship program is to provide an additional source of support during an employee’s orientation, but mentorship can also come later in a worker’s time with the company.

Why is Mentorship Important?

Unlike coaching, mentorship goes beyond analytics and metrics. At a time when teams are seeing significant turnover and increased hybrid workforce integration, employee satisfaction and retention should be near the top of your priority list in 2022. According to a survey by Deloitte, millennial employees who said they plan to stay with their employer for more than five years were twice as likely to have a mentor (68% with, compared to 32% without).

Mentorship programs are key for employee retention and satisfaction. Mentees have the most to gain from mentorship programs. Not only do mentorships help with career advancement, but they also instill confidence, and help them achieve workplace goals. Reaching your goals makes you feel fulfilled and successful. With mentors often helping mentees achieve their career goals, job satisfaction naturally increases.

It’s important to note that the benefits of a mentorship aren’t exclusively for the mentees. Being a mentor goes far beyond a rewarding feeling. Mentors gain key, tangible benefits for participating in these programs, including increased self-confidence and job satisfaction. Upskilling works both ways as well, with mentors learning how to be a leader, improving communication skills, and having exposure to new perspectives. Employees who mentor teammates or other colleagues are 20% more likely to stay at their organization.

For both mentee and mentor, the mentoring process exposes new ideas and ways of thinking. This can have long lasting effects on mentor and mentee, alike, encouraging innovation. 89% of those mentored, go on to mentor themselves contributing to a culture of learning and mentoring.

Getting Started

How do you get started? Mentoring programs in the workplace leverage existing resources and key personnel to help employees grow and thrive. An informal mentorship program can begin with new hire orientation, walking through the tasks at hand and finding opportunities for guidance and growth.

Often, a mentor will continue to help the employee grow in their current position and become ready for new jobs and career opportunities. Mentoring can also assist an employee, new to a specific job or area of responsibility, to quickly learn what they need to know to succeed in their job and role. In formal mentorship programs, it is important to identify a mentor outside of the direct reporting structure of that employee. This empowers the mentee to ask difficult questions, while not fearing to fail, while protecting the manager from potential bias.

With AR automation you can leverage AR coaching analytics to mentor and help individual team members improve performance and stay ahead of the curve on late payments. They’ll feel generally more engaged and leverage those skills for years to come.

Mentorships can also blossom through the employee’s initiative, identifying career skills that he or she lacks. The employee may find a more experience colleague with these skills and identifies that person as a potential mentor from whom they can learn the skills.

Mentoring is an effective and low-cost way for experienced staff to pass on industry and skill-based knowledge across the organization. At a time when accounting teams are feeling the squeeze from increased workloads, team turnover, and a need for a more diverse skillset, a mentorship program, combined with powerful automation should be the way forward for many finance teams.

With a connected accounting solution, like award-winning Lockstep, for your finance team to coordinate work with customers and vendors, you can go digital and enjoy the benefits of office automation.