With the mass layoffs that have occurred due to COVID, it is tempting to think that employees will be engaged if they have a job. But the Employee Experience you create today will be what your employees remember six months from now in a stronger economy & job market.
But just what is the Employee Experience?
Employee Experience consists of what employees encounter & observe during their employment – their tangible & intangible experiences. And, of course, these interactions shape their perception of their employer & directly affect their degree of engagement & performance.
In the 2020 HR Sentiment Survey when HR & other business leaders were asked their top initiative was for 2020, Employee Experience was first for 50% of the respondents. Many organizations are mapping & improving their Employee Experience & some have even created positions to do just that.
Why are so many organizations improving their Employee Experience?
- Organizations with a top-quartile Employee Experience achieve twice the innovation, twice the customer satisfaction & 25% higher profits than organizations with a bottom-quartile Employee Experience – MIT
- Organizations that have enhanced their Employee Experience satisfy 32% more employees who exert more discretionary effort & are less likely to jump ship – Gartner
- Employee Experience drives employee engagement – Gallup
- In a survey of 1,100 U.S. employees during this pandemic 41% said they felt burned out & another 23% reported feeling depressed. The toll COVID is taking on employees is another reason to focus on the Employee Experience – SHRM
In this newsletter we’ll offer four steps for getting your Employee Experience Improvement Program off the ground.
Step #1. Determine your starting point – the touchpoint on which your organization initially wants to focus. You might select a touchpoint that:
- You know needs improvement
- Many employees are currently experiencing
- Is most essential for your business strategy. For example, if your organization is growing, logically you might want to initially focus on your recruiting process.
There’s no right or wrong place to start – it depends on your organization’s situation.
Touchpoints that may matter more than others include –
Recruiting, interviewing & selection process – job seekers use Glassdoor to understand what their Employee Experience would be like
- Initial conversations with HR
- Interview with hiring manager
- Treating all candidates so they become advocates for your organization – whether or not they receive an offer?
Orientation & onboarding process – approximately 10% of employees leave within six months of starting a new job:
- First day impressions
- Preparing new hires to have success in a reasonable period of time
- Initial 1:1 with their manager
Employee engagement initiatives – high engagement indicates that employees feel supported & thus are more committed:
- Managers satisfying employees’ engagement needs by:
- Communicating clear job expectations
- Providing adequate materials & equipment
- Utilizing employees’ talents
- Providing recognition & praise
- Showing employees they are cared about, personally
- Encouraging employee development
Training & development initiatives:
- Succession planning with career paths & advancement opportunities
Performance management initiatives:
- Managers coaching & providing frequent feedback
- Performance appraisal interviews
- Employees recognized for their achievements
Exit process – average tenure is declining it’s always beneficial to understand the reasons for an employee’s decision:
- Exit interview
- Respectful exit experience
Step #2. Conduct a baseline survey to obtain your employees’ feedback. Improving any touchpoint in the Employee Experience involves proactively listening to your employees to understand what’s important to them & their perception of your organization. If you have already conducted an engagement survey, that data will help significantly in informing you as to where to focus your efforts.
Step #3 Identify the organizational values you want to demonstrate in the employee touchpoint[s] you selected. What impressions, feelings, behaviors do you want to foster in employees through your priority touchpoint[s] – what does a great Employee Experience look like for your organization?
Step #4 Enhance your priority employee touchpoint. What can be done or said that would:
- Leave your employees with a less-than-positive impression
- Cause employees to feel that their expectations were exceeded
Then for that employee touchpoint create standards of performance that will exceed your employees’ expectations.
Enhancing Employee Experience clearly pays off. Organizations that have done so have achieved twice the customer satisfaction & 25% higher profits.
“With money no longer the primary motivator, focusing on the Employee Experience is the most promising competitive advantage that organizations have.”
Jacob Morgan, The Employee Experience Advantage