Jim Steinlage, President & CEO of Choice Solutions,
Businesses focused on employee experience (EX) tend to have a strong company culture, greater employee engagement, and higher levels of employee satisfaction and measurably better productivity. The most satisfied employees are the ones whose organizations give them the ability to get their most important work done. The pandemic has dramatically changed how both employees and organizations view what makes for an exceptional EX. As we head into 2021, most businesses will continue to be affected by COVID-19. How they handle a changing workplace and evolving workforce will directly impact their short and long-term success. One thing is certain, the future demand for technology that affects EX will continue to grow.
Along with the accelerated adoption of a digital transformation, these EX trends will gain traction in the new year.
Technology Drives Exceptional Employee Experience
While organizations have been traditionally driven to continue improving the customer experience, recent studies indicate the pandemic has compelled them to place an equally healthy approach to improving EX. Looking ahead, technology’s role in improving EX will continue to grow, especially in terms of solutions used for a remote workforce, such as digital workspace solutions. The more visionary organizations have already realized the value of teamwork between HR & IT but are now incorporating marketing into the mix. Where technology was once considered an HR and IT tool, 2021 will see a shift to technologies that focus on the employee needs and help sell employees on the value of their organization. Marketing an organization’s brand pride, promoting self-esteem enhancements, enabling personal workspaces and delivering custom workflow solutions that ultimately enhance EX will require collaboration among IT, HR, and marketing to meet these new demands.
Employees will continue to want the ability to work remotely but also feel like they’re part of a team. It will take HR, IT and marketing working together to determine remote work solutions that allow for collaboration amongst team members and keep employees engaged with each other and the greater organization as a whole. Marketing and HR will have to work together to promote a positive working atmosphere amongst prospective and current employees.
Collaboration Moves to the Forefront
Organizations will continue to examine more informal ways of teambuilding and employee socialization, but stay tuned for significant advances in fostering better online connections among employees. Something I learned early on is that “Necessity is the mother of Invention.” Many companies are now using platforms like Zoom or Microsoft Teams for meetings and check-ins. Future efforts will include things like virtual job shadowing and mentoring to remind employees they’re not working in a vacuum but are part of a bigger, greater team. Future technology solutions will provide easier ways of creating simultaneous collaborative conversations using BI and intelligent work flow.
Data Takes a Leadership Role
HR will use technologies including BI’s data collection to drive business value that the organizations leaders need to achieve future results in areas like:
- Employee Retention
- Employee Recruitment
- Employee Engagement
- Learning and Development Skills
- Creating a Culture of accepting Agile and Rapid Changing Environment
Information assembled from non-invasive ways of gathering employee data collection in 2021 and beyond can help organizations leadership to keep pace with rapidly evolving EX expectations.
Organizations are beginning to realize that when employees create their own optimal work environment, productivity—and profits soar. Giving employees ownership and enablement over how they conduct business will continue to be essential to job satisfaction and employee retention. This seems simple and great news for success, but effective execution may be a challenge in some organizations.
Where We’re Headed
The only thing changing starting this new year is the last digit in the year and organizations’ and employees’ attitudes toward the future. The world is still facing a lot of uncertainty. There are bright spots, including multiple vaccines that promise to get the pandemic under control. Many of the changes the health crisis has brought about are likely here to stay. These changes are not bad; they were inevitable and were just accelerated because of crisis. Reimagine workspaces and other new technologies will remain top priorities for organizations to deliver employee experiences that keep people engaged and satisfied.
Get ready for HR & Marketing working together to encourage and promote to employees the value of their organization as part of the employee experience. Their goal is to inspire pride and meet the self-esteem demands of their team to prepare for agile technology of the future.