Employee Experience Should Be A Priority For Every Business Leader
7 May 2021
Employee experience reflects the changing nature of work. Employers today are recognising that people are their most important assets and that they must reimagine every aspect of work – from recruitment, onboarding to job evaluation, collaboration, perks and the work environment itself – or risk losing their key talent based on employee experience.
As defined by management consultancy firm, Mckinsey & Company, employee experience is defined as “companies and their people working together to create personalized, authentic experiences that ignite passion and tap into purpose to strengthen individual, team, and company performance”.
Why is Employee Experience important?
A strong employee experience creates a positive impact on every aspect within your organisation, from your recruitment efforts to when an employee leaves the organisation. At the same time, a positive employee experience is also becoming a key differentiator in the war for talent, whereby organisations need to understand what incentives and experiences are meaningful to a particular group of employees.
Is Employee Experience the same as Employee Engagement?
Not exactly. Deloitte Insights has defined employee engagement as one that is “employee-centered and personal – focusing on the emotional and social needs of the worker and is top-down, hoping that employees engage with the company’s culture, ideas and work”.
Employee experience, on the other hand, focuses on the broader aspect of the organisation and requires efforts from the entire organisation. While it does touch on employee engagement and incentives, these are merely certain aspects of the overall employee experience.
A good employee experience strategy also provides employees with information about the effectiveness of the organisation’s systems in terms of the entire employee lifecycle – recruiting, onboarding, learning and development, performance management, career development and offboarding.
Creating an impactful employee experience involves continuous evaluation of its effectiveness in order to ensure that employees’ thoughts and feedback are being incorporated throughout the employee lifecycle.
How leaders can start thinking about employee experience
Address multiple milestones
Instead of waiting until an employee leaves the organisation to get feedback, there should always be feedback opportunities for employees at every milestone including recruitment, hiring, performance, learning and departure. That way, leaders are able to quickly take action to improve the employee experience at key milestones.
Adjust the workplace to fit modern needs
Cubicle-workplaces are a thing of the past. However, that does not mean that your organisation has to spend on fancy perks such as a football table or darts area. It simply means that your organisation needs to periodically relook at its workplace environment to ensure that it creates a vibe for every employee to work productively and thrive. It could be something as simple as installing full-length windows to welcome in natural light or even offering flexible work arrangements for employees. Not only do these small workplace perks boost employee engagement levels, it is a great attraction tool for new talent as well.
Treat employees like customers
Similar to how we would treat our customers, it is imperative that we provide the same treatment to our employees as well. This means gathering their feedback, addressing their needs and ensuring that they are a priority. Given that your employees are typically the ones interacting directly with your customers, happy and motivated employees translate to better customer service as well.
A good and impactful employee experience does not necessarily require a long-term plan. In fact, it simply needs to be well thought-out and well-executed to create a strong impact on employees. And the best way to start is by listening to your employees and customising efforts to differentiate yourself as an employer amongst others in order to create specific employee experiences for each individual.