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How to Improve Employee Satisfaction: Effective Strategies from Industrial Psychology


Did you know that many of us spend well over 90,000 hours of our lives working?

With such a huge chunk of our time invested in your job, you want more than just a paycheck—you want to feel genuinely happy, engaged, and fulfilled. That’s why we’re here to talk about how to improve employee satisfaction through strategies from industrial psychology.

Of course, companies strive for a healthy work environment where employees are happy, and productivity is heightened. Boosting employee satisfaction not only elevates morale but also drives employees to excel in their tasks. In fact, companies with happy employees have been shown to outperform their competition by 20%.

To help organizations navigate this delicate balance, they turn to the principles of industrial psychology. Industrial psychology observes employees’ behavior to identify improvement opportunities. It can be used to create programs that improve employee productivity, engagement, and work-life balance.

In this article, we will discuss ways to improve employee satisfaction using best practices from industrial psychology.


What is industrial psychology?

Industrial psychology is used in the workplace to study and analyze human behavior. Its insights guide organizations to make informed decisions about workplace policies and regulations.

This area of psychology is often grouped with organizational psychology within the workplace to form what is known as I/O psychology or Industrial-Organizational psychology. Although the two terms are often used interchangeably, they differ slightly. Industrial psychology focuses on the people at work, usually exploring individual differences and their effect on performance. In contrast, organizational psychology concentrates on employees’ roles in the organization and what function the organization has within society.

The two concepts have intertwined, leading to workplace program development and practices that aim for employees that are satisfied in their roles.


How is industrial psychology applied in the workplace?

Industrial psychology uses various scientific methods, such as quantitative and qualitative research. Here are some areas in IO Psychology that can be applied in the workplace:

Human resource planning

Organizations should continuously evaluate their HR needs and plan recruitment to achieve their business goals.

These needs include:

  • Talent inventory. Identifying how employees’ knowledge, skills, and abilities add value to the company
  • Workforce forecasting. Planning future recruitment requirements, including the required skill sets
  • Control and evaluation. Assessing how effective existing industrial psychology programs and interventions are performing Applications of OI Psychology

Performance appraisal

For existing employees, regular performance monitoring is essential. This helps identify needs and opportunities for training and development. 

Job performance is measured using criteria that evaluate performance levels: objective performance criteria (for example, the number of sales or deals closed) and subjective performance criteria (such as feedback from colleagues and managers).

Organization development

Industrial psychology focuses on organizational development to increase employee retention and maintain a healthy company culture. 

These objectives require changing some internal policies and addressing questions such as: 

  • Why are we doing this?
  • How does it add value to the clients and employees?
  • Can it be done better by another team or individual, or even outsourced?


How to improve employee satisfaction using industrial psychology

By understanding IO psychology, organizations can create a work environment that makes the employee experience good and helps them do their best work and feel fulfilled. Here are two ways to implement this science-based approach:

Establish clear communication in the workplace 

Having clear communication is crucial to maintaining a healthy workplace. About 50% of employees reported that ineffective communication can affect job satisfaction

Open communication lets employees understand your company’s goals and help you work towards them. Plus, when there is open communication in the workplace, employees are more likely to build trust and increase their productivity. This, in turn, helps avoid micromanagement. 

According to organizational theorist Karl Edward Weick, the organizational information theory states that information is needed to achieve company goals. This means that communication helps regulate the environment, affecting workplace behavior and productivity. 

However, establishing clear communication in the workplace is easier said and done. This is why human resources use personality tests like the DiSC assessment

DiSC stands for the four personality profiles in the DiSC model: 

  • (D)ominance
  • (i)nfluence
  • (S)teadiness
  • (C)onscientiousness

DiSC stands

This tool helps employees understand how to work together and communicate more effectively by identifying communication styles in the workplace. 

Once the results of the test or survey conducted are released, you can assess what specific solutions can help improve communication in the workplace, such as: 

  • Set regular one-on-one meetings with your staff members
  • Organize weekly meetings with structured agenda
  • Offer constructive feedback and guidance when needed
  • Conduct follow-up meetings with updates and actionable next steps
  • Practice active listening
  • Give employees the recognition they deserve and reward them for exemplary performance
  • Communicate regularly on company announcements and important news
  • Recognize employees’ strengths and weaknesses


Invest in management skills

Honing managers to become good leaders is crucial for maintaining a productive work environment and ensuring they can manage employees effectively. Leadership development is one of the critical areas that industrial psychology focuses on. 

By understanding the best leadership approach for your company, you can improve a leader’s management skills in no time. It is important to note that there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to building management skills to become a good leader. It will require further knowledge and training.

Here are several ways you can invest in your leadership skills:

  • Learn how to delegate tasks to your colleagues when you identify your weakness\es and strengths as a leader.
  • Invest in coaching programs with a trusted mentor or co-manager in the workplace.
  • Develop your soft skills such as time management, attention to detail, and interpersonal communication. 
  • Provide development opportunities, such as conducting regular leadership training programs.


Employee engagement and motivation can significantly impact job satisfaction

Research shows that employees are 87% less likely to leave their job if they are engaged in the workplace. Additionally, a Gallup study shows that employee engagement produces a difference in absenteeism of 81% versus those not engaged. 

How do you keep them engaged? The key is to focus on concrete performance management activities, which include assessing work expectations, addressing workplace concerns, maintaining harmonious relationships with coworkers, and providing opportunities for career development.

In the same way, employee motivation and job satisfaction plays a crucial role in maintaining a productive workplace. In fact, employees are 20 percent more productive when motivated

In industrial psychology, Abraham Korman’s Consistency theory states a positive correlation between self-esteem and performance. Employees who feel good about themselves are motivated to perform better than those who do not think they’re valuable and worthy.

To keep employees motivated, consider holding regular and strategic team-building sessions, offering reward systems, discussing advancement opportunities, and honing their strengths and skills to help them achieve their goals.


Why Healthee can elevate employee satisfaction

Keeping employees satisfied requires assessing the holistic well-being of your employees. Investing in concrete solutions like improving health care benefits for your employees is a great start. Tools like Healthee make it easy for employees to check their health benefits by showing them how to pick their plan, what’s covered, and where to get high-quality, affordable care. 

It can be challenging for HR leaders to address all employee healthcare concerns. However, Healthee’s AI-powered personal Health Assistant can help manage employee benefits questions in seconds, maximizing employee health and satisfaction while freeing up your team’s schedule for other pursuits.

Healthee’s Plan Selection Tool provides your employees with personalized Open Enrollment answers and educational resources, freeing up time and resources.

With Healthee, health care is incredibly accessible and easy to understand, helping your employees achieve their full potential.



The benefits of leveraging industrial psychology to increase employee satisfaction are hard to ignore. 

By incorporating industrial psychology into their strategy, companies gain valuable insights into how employees behave in the workplace, helping them create a positive work environment that benefits everyone. For HR leaders, it means knowing how to improve employee satisfaction by crafting better policies that lead to a happier and more fulfilled workforce.

Transforming industrial psychology theories into action involves enhancing workplace health care processes. Tools like Healthee help employees feel better about their jobs by empowering them to access health care in the most seamless way possible.

Keep your employees healthy and happy with Healthee! Request a demo to learn more.

Authored by: Omer Maman

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