HR Mavericks

Eddy’s HR Mavericks Encyclopedia

Time to Productivity
Unlocking the secrets to getting new employees productive faster can be a game-changer for any HR professional looking to maximize their team's potential. Here’s how to calculate and utilize this revolutionary metric.

What Is Time to Productivity?

Time to productivity is a metric that measures the period between the new employee's start date and the date when they achieve full productivity. Full productivity is defined as the point at which the employee is able to perform all of their job responsibilities with minimal supervision and support. This metric is used by HR professionals to evaluate the effectiveness of their onboarding and training programs, identify areas for improvement, make more informed hiring decisions, and much more.

Why Is Time to Productivity Important?

Time to productivity is essential information for HR professionals because it measures the time and resources required for new employees to become fully productive in their roles. By understanding this metric, HR professionals can ensure new employees are effectively onboarded, trained, and supported, leading to cost savings, higher employee engagement and retention, and improved organizational performance.
  • Cost savings. A shorter time to productivity leads to cost savings for the organization as it reduces the time and resources required to train new employees. It also reduces the impact on existing employees who take on additional responsibilities or support new hires.
  • Higher employee engagement and retention. Employees who feel confident and productive in their role are more likely to be engaged and satisfied with their jobs. By improving time to productivity, organizations can help new employees feel more connected to the company, leading to higher retention rates and reduced turnover.
  • Improved organizational performance. Productive employees are critical to an organization's success. By improving time to productivity, organizations can ensure that new employees are contributing to the company's goals and objectives quickly and efficiently, leading to improved organizational performance and growth.

Factors That Influence Time to Productivity

It's important to understand the factors that influence time to productivity. Here are three critical factors that have a significant impact on how quickly new employees become productive in their roles.

Previous Experience and Skills

An employee's previous experience and skills have a significant impact on how quickly they learn and adapt to their new role. Employees who have similar experience or skills may require less time to reach their productivity goals.

Quality of Training and Support

Employees who receive comprehensive training and ongoing support tend to learn and adapt more quickly than those who receive inadequate training or support.

Organizational Culture and Communication

The organizational culture and communication also play a role in an employee's time to productivity. A positive and inclusive culture with clear communication channels and clearly communicated expectations helps new employees feel more engaged and invested in their role, leading to a shorter time to productivity. Conversely, a negative or toxic culture with poor communication hinders an employee's ability to learn and adapt, leading to a longer time to productivity.

How to Calculate the Time-to-Productivity Metric

To calculate this metric, first establish clear performance standards and expectations for the role as well as a timeline for achieving them. You can then track the employee's progress towards these goals, provide them with ongoing feedback and support, and adjust your training and development plans as needed.

Step 1: Define what Fully Productive Means for Each Specific Role

The first step is to define the level of productivity a new employee needs to achieve to be considered fully productive. This could involve setting performance goals, identifying key job responsibilities, and establishing a timeline for achieving these milestones.

Step 2: Track Progress and Performance

Once performance standards have been established, track the employee's progress and performance against these goals over time. This can be done through regular check-ins, assessments, and feedback from supervisors or colleagues.

Step 3: Determine the Date of Full Productivity

Once the employee has achieved the performance goals and is deemed fully productive, determine the date when this milestone was reached. This will serve as the endpoint for the time-to-productivity calculation.

Step 4: Calculate the Time to Productivity

Finally, calculate time to productivity by finding the amount of time between the employee's start date and the date of full productivity. For example, if a new hire starts work on March 1, 2023 and reaches full productivity on May 1, 2023, their time to productivity is 62 days.

Actions to Decrease Time to Productivity

New employees' time to productivity is a critical metric that impacts organizational performance and employee engagement. There are various factors that influence this metric, including effective onboarding, clear performance expectations, training and development opportunities, performance management and feedback, and a supportive work environment. In this list, we'll explore these five factors in detail and explain how HR professionals can execute them effectively to improve new employees' time to productivity.

Effective Onboarding

A well-designed onboarding program helps new employees learn about the company's culture, expectations, and processes and develop the necessary skills to perform their job effectively. HR can execute this by providing a comprehensive orientation session, assigning a mentor or coach, and providing regular check-ins and feedback.

Clear Performance Expectations

Clear and well-defined performance expectations help new employees understand their responsibilities and priorities. HR can execute this by providing job descriptions, outlining goals and objectives, and setting clear metrics for measuring success. In fact, simply by measuring an employee’s time to productivity ratio, you ensure these performance milestones and desired timeline are clearly defined and communicated.

Training and Development Opportunities

Offering regular training and development opportunities is another method to help new employees gain new skills, stay up to date on industry trends, and feel invested in their role. Additionally, simply having these opportunities available to your employees can help employees stay engaged and invested. Examples include online courses, workshops, mentoring, and coaching.

Performance Management and Feedback

Regular performance management and feedback helps new employees understand how they are doing, what they need to improve, and how they can reach their goals. HR can execute this by setting clear expectations, providing regular feedback, and helping employees create a personal development plan.

Supportive Work Environment

A supportive work environment helps new employees feel comfortable and confident in their role. Promote this by fostering a positive work culture, offering social and well-being education, promoting open communication, and providing opportunities for interaction and team-building.
Kayla Farber

Kayla Farber

Kayla is the Chief Innovation Officer at Hero Culture, where the passion is to create company cultures of retention using the power of personality.
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Frequently asked questions
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