There was a time when organizations preferred to project themselves as "customer-centric". But those times have given way to a changed landscape today when customer-obsessed companies have turned the focus on their employees. Today's organizations are more "employee obsessed" than ever because they have realized that employee experience contributes directly towards the success of their business.
What Is Employee Experience?
Just as customer experience is an umbrella term that encapsulates all the different experiences of a consumer with a company, employee experience is every experience a worker acquires at a company. You can define employee experience as the sum total of the experiences of a professional throughout their tenure at an organization. It is an evolved and more holistic approach than the more old-school one i.e. employee management.
Employee experience includes diverse aspects like daily interactions with their colleagues, team leads, and HR managers, and experience with workplace technological infrastructure, facilities, work environment, and every other thing they interact with. Thought leadership explains that employees are actually the internal customers of an organization. The concept is particularly true in departments like IT and HR which directly influence the company’s work culture and communication.
In today’s times, employee experience is a major employee motivation management factor for organizations all over the world. Employees now are no longer enticed by only handsome compensation; their overall experience at a company is equally vital for their motivation and productivity.
Factors That Shape the Employee Experience
Employee experience encapsulates a vast range of elements. However, it is influenced by 5 basic yet key factors.
· Interactions with their manager – The interactions between an employee and their manager play the most crucial role in shaping their experience. Interactions with the manager can influence employee experience by at least 70%; good managers can be good mentors, motivators, and inspirations to their subordinates. How managers conduct themselves helps reflect company values, shapes a positive employee experience, and also influences employee retention levels.
· Interactions with the organization – Though employees rarely interact with their organization on a regular basis, such interactions can highly influence employee experience. Presentations held during the company town hall meeting, or the annual CEO meetings with all employees in attendance can significantly boost their idea about their company, and how they feel about their workplace. Whether the leaders hear them out and help them with difficulties. These can even help employees decide if they want further interactions with the company leadership. For instance, if the top management addresses questions placed by employees, to make them feel recognized and heard.
· Interactions with the team – Team dynamics are extremely vital when it comes to creating a positive employee experience. Teams with positive work dynamics make it worthwhile for employees and offer an environment of trust and strengthen bonding. This helps employees collaborate and work better and also stay motivated. Healthy team dynamics also create an atmosphere of psychological safety which leads to freedom of creativity and innovation.
· Interactions with workplace technology – Along with human interactions and work culture, the company infrastructure and facilities offered to employees are also critical determinants of employee experience. Organizational infrastructure includes everything from hardware and systems to software applications, company software, etc. And nowadays when remote working has become the norm, these aspects are responsible for shaping the digital employee experience. Lesser the challenges faced in interacting with workplace technology, the greater the employee experience quotient.
Why Is Employee Experience Crucial?
Employee experience is obviously intricately intertwined with employee satisfaction. However, there are other far-reaching effects on business outcomes. Almost 80% of top business leaders emphasize the importance of employee experience. This is because productivity, performance, and profitability – the key determinants of a company's success are also directly affected by employee experience.
Employee experience directly influences employee engagement and talent acquisition. And most importantly, it plays a crucial role in shaping the customer experience. MIT researchers have found that companies leading in employee experience have reported 25% more profits.
Low rates of employee engagement can cost organizations about 550 billion USD per year. As such, the focus on investing in employee engagement software has intensified over the past few years, as more and more companies strive to enrich employee engagement levels through efficient employee experience management practices.