For years, the main focus of the majority of businesses was delivering a memorable experience for their customers – researching their needs and expectations, then matching or even exceeding them. It makes sense, the way people perceive and interact with a brand determines most of its success.
By encountering it on a daily basis, we’re all very much familiar with the term customer experience and we know how a great one feels like. A package ordered online and delivered with a personal note next day, a shop assistant that kindly answers all your questions, a simple and straightforward online form – these are just some simple elements of a customer journey that ensure a higher chance for a second interaction with that brand.
But as people are now more accustomed to what a great service looks and feels like, they start having consumer-style expectations when it comes to the workplace. Therefore, more recently, the notion of employee experience is rapidly emerging as a new business focus among many forward-thinking companies.
Similar to the customer experience, the employee experience is the sum of all interactions of an employee with your organisation, starting with how they find and apply for a job and every possible scenario following that.
Today, a great employee experience could become your most promising competitive advantage. Employees have far more power now and companies are struggling to find and retain talent. More people are choosing non-traditional ways of earning a living, many are job-hopping like never before - looking for better opportunities, and money is no longer the primary motivating factor. In this radically changing job market, if you design a valuable and memorable experience for your employees – you can win their loyalty, which will translate to long-term business success. But where do you start?
Map the employee journey and consider every step equally important
Just as with customer experience, the employee experience needs to be approached as a whole, every step of the employee journey is important and each next step should align with the promises of the previous one. How are people finding out about an open position? How are the application and interview processes designed? Are all expectations of candidates matched after they join the company? etc. It’s essential to map this journey and see how each point can be improved and personalised. If the experienced of an employee is considered in every step of a hiring process, during onboarding, during their employment, but also during an employee leaving a company or not moving further in a hiring process, will greatly impact your employer branding in a positive way.
Know that employee experience is a combination of three factors
For most organisations, creating a great employee experience often involves a complete redesign of their activities. However, until recently, the majority mainly have focused only on one aspect – company culture, how employees feel when they are already onboard. But there are two more aspects that shape the employee experience, besides culture: technology and physical workplace. All three are equally important if you want to create an environment where people want to show up. So make sure to invest in tech tools that focus on your employees’ needs instead of business requirements, create flexible workplaces, respect your employees’ values and help them achieve their goals.