If it seems like you’re hearing a lot about the “employee experience,” it’s not your imagination.
It has become one of the key initiatives for 2019. Cutting-edge companies have begun to realize that creating a great workplace culture is crucial to hiring and retaining the best staff. They’re finding that it can just as much of an impact on the bottom line as investing in new products or services.
This concept isn’t just limited to cool-cat Silicon Valley startups and their fun workspaces, either. Focusing on employee experience has gone mainstream. Companies across all industries to see a positive business impact for one simple reason:
The modern workforce has changed drastically just in the past few years.
Today’s workers are better educated and more tech-savvy than any other generation in history. Millennials and “Gen Z” employees have grown up with the Internet. Mobile devices like smartphones and iPads seem to be extensions of their bodies. These younger workers have shown the incredible ability to be able to work anywhere, anytime. This dynamic has changed the nature of what most would consider a job. Some have even called this a new “industrial revolution,” driven in part by this mobile workforce.
Companies will have to adapt and evolve if they are to survive this revolution.
Elevating employee experience doesn’t have to mean completely changing a company from the inside out. Making too many changes, too quickly could have the opposite effect and negatively impact morale. Instead, consider these simple, but effective, employee experience examples that might help your organization.
(1) Empower your employees
When employees are given greater control over their day-to-day work and have more of a say in the operations of an organization, they can feel more engaged with the company and more aligned with its goals. They have greater ownership of their careers. A perfect example is how Google encourages employees to pursue personal pet projects during their work time. Another is how Ritz-Carlton authorizes employees to spend a certain amount of money to help guests. This kind of autonomy not only increases employee engagement but ultimately boosts productivity.
(2) Streamline communication
Inefficient communication not only reduces productivity but makes employees feel disconnected from the company and their coworkers. Most companies still rely on outdated technology like intranets or email to communicate with employees. These methods assume that employees are at their desk all day. That, of course, is not the case. An estimated 80 percent of workers today are “deskless.” This means they don’t have easy access to email or log into the company intranet. The answer? Expand your intranet and email capabilities by utilizing a mobile app that delivers communication straight to the mobile devices of employees. Delivering timely, relevant information to the right employees keeps everyone on the same page and can help forge closer relationships between remote employees and management.
(3) Act on employee feedback
Just as companies take customer feedback seriously, so should they consider employee feedback. What seems like an easy and obvious way to provide a great experience is often forgotten. Many organizations think that an annual “Employee Appreciation Day” is the best way to show workers that they are an essential member of the company. Instead of taking one day each year to throw a party, find ways to improve their experience continuously all year long. Establish two-way lines of communication. This way, you don’t just ask your employees what could make their experience better, you can act on those suggestions and feedback. Keeping employees engaged with the company, and making them feel like the company has an interest in them as employees and people, can have amazing effects on worker productivity.
One major theme connecting these examples is treating employees as you would customers.
Competing for the best employees just as you would customers is the new reality for businesses. Today’s mobile, tech-savvy worker is no longer satisfied with just showing up for eight hours a day to draw a paycheck. They are now demanding more from their employers.
Employers need to meet those demands if they hope to survive this new industrial revolution.
Improve and expand your internal communication. Engage your employees more. Offer them more of an opportunity to have a say in the organization.
These examples will have not only a significant impact on the company culture but could also have a game-changing effect on the productivity of employees.
Learn more about the growing role of Employee Experience here.