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employee experience

The importance of the employee experience for today’s workforce

At Learning Pool, we’re passionate about empowering businesses to unlock the full potential of their people. Upskilling and reskilling initiatives are a masterful way of ensuring your employees have the skills needed to propel your business forward. But in today’s dynamic job market, cultivating a positive employee experience is just as important for your continued success.

What is employee experience?

Offering a competitive salary and a comprehensive benefits package is one of the surest ways of attracting top talent to a company. However, what ultimately encourages an employee to stay for the long haul is a positive employee experience.

Employee experience refers to the journey an individual undergoes from the moment they consider joining a company right up until they either leave the business or retire. It looks at physical, cultural and technological influences that impact an employee’s day-to-day working life and might include the effectiveness of the onboarding process, their relationship with their colleagues, manager and leadership team, opportunities for job progression and the tools and technology at their disposal to do their job well.

Why is employee experience so important?

As more organizations adopt a permanent remote or hybrid way of working, today’s workforce has more choice than ever when searching for their next opportunity. Not only can a positive employee experience foster a collaborative workplace culture, improve customer relationships and drive business objectives, but it is now the key to attracting, retaining and engaging top talent.

Here’s why:

Improves employee engagement and productivity

Individual and team productivity are top of mind for business leaders today. Cultivating a positive employee experience fosters a sense of purpose and belonging, contributing to higher engagement rates among employees and a desire to contribute to the company’s success. As a result, individuals are motivated to do their best work which helps to improve both individual and team performance and, ultimately, drives better business results.

In fact, Gallup research shows that businesses achieving high employee engagement rates saw an 18% increase in productivity compared to businesses with low employee engagement.

Reduces employee turnover

A positive employee experience plays a significant role in increasing engagement and retention in a workplace. According to Gallup, workplaces with high employee engagement rates can lead to a 59% reduction in employee turnover.

Highly engaged employees aren’t only more motivated and productive, they tend to become loyal and committed to their companies too. In fact, research from McKinsey demonstrates that people with a positive employee experience are eight times more likely to stay with a company.

For today’s workforce, a workplace where they feel they fit in, align with the culture and can achieve a work-life balance is a top priority and lends to improved engagement company-wide. A targeted employee experience strategy that regularly implements employee feedback and offers clear career development and advancement opportunities is a good start.

Attracts top talent

In a competitive job market, a strong employee experience becomes a powerful differentiator, setting you apart from other employers. Above-average salaries are now not the only consideration for people looking for their next opportunity – many individuals also evaluate employee satisfaction, company culture and opportunities for training and development when assessing whether an organization is right for them.

Improves customer satisfaction

Oftentimes, perhaps without realizing it, human factors can affect how we approach our working day. For example, a poor night’s sleep can contribute to poor judgment or taking offense to something completely innocent.

And just as these human elements can contribute to a bad day, disengaged and unmotivated employees can negatively impact a customer’s or prospective customer’s experience with your business.

Taking positive action toward improved employee experience can turn negative customer experiences into more favorable ones. According to Gallup, when employees feel motivated, the quality of their work increases which can contribute to 23% higher profitability.

Highly engaged employees are typically more helpful and knowledgeable in their interactions with customers and possess a willingness to solve problems creatively and find solutions that meet a customer’s needs.

It’s these employees who are invested in their company’s success that will go the extra mile to foster better client relationships and represent your brand more positively.

How to improve the employee experience

Prioritize employee well-being

According to Forbes, happy employees are as much as 20% more productive than unhappy employees. For employers to achieve higher employee satisfaction rates, they must implement initiatives that help address and reduce anxiety, burnout and stress in the workplace.

As an employer, improved employee wellbeing can be achieved by creating a culture that offers mental, emotional and personal support. This might be through access to counselling services and resources, by connecting staff to experts or coaches in varying areas, offering continuing opportunities for career development and encouraging self-care.

Supporting a better work-life balance is another way of prioritizing employee wellbeing and can look like ensuring employees have achievable workloads, offering flexible hours and hybrid working opportunities and encouraging staff to use their annual leave opposed to carrying their days over.

Ultimately, it’s important to adopt a culture of openness so that employees feel comfortable asking for support when they need it.

Respond to and implement employee feedback

Establishing effective and regular methods of communication and being transparent with your employees on topics such as company performance, pay and benefits, organizational structure and product updates is crucial for building trust among your workforce.

Further to that, collecting and responding to employee feedback regularly is just as important. By conducting employee experience surveys a company can consistently take a pulse check of their company culture and how employees truly feel.

These surveys provide employees with the opportunity to provide confidential responses on what matters to them, what they think they need to feel valued and supported and how their experience could be improved.

It’s important to remember that the crucial element of this process is actually responding to the feedback and implementing initiatives that you believe will benefit for workforce as a whole. Communicating to your employees why something isn’t possible right now encourages them to feel heard and considered and empowers them to continue giving feedback and making recommendations in the future.

Create a robust and supportive onboarding process

Onboarding is a time for first impressions: the impression the organization makes on new hires and the impression they form of the organization. It’s the individual’s official introduction to their new working environment, their colleagues and the part they will play in contributing to your organization’s success. It can mean the difference between your new hires becoming permanent fixtures or deciding to walk at the first, more appealing opportunity.

An effective onboarding process should ensure the individual has access to all of the information they require for their job, as well as your Employee Assistance Program, employee handbook and internal processes and procedures. The process should include regular check-ins with their manager and/or colleagues so that they can ask those burning questions in the early days but also learn who to turn to in a particular scenario. 30, 60 and 90-day development checklists should also play a part as they enable employees to assess their progress and understand what they need to be successful.

Discover how Learning Pool’s data-driven solutions are turning new hires into high performers with a smarter approach to onboarding.

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