Employee experience is one of the most important factors for any organization. Employees who have a positive experience are more productive, stay longer, and are your best ambassadors. That said, managers and recruiters sometimes fail to take steps to ensure that this is the reality. All too often, the opposite seems to be true. When the going gets tough, employee experience seems to be the first thing that gets thrown under the bus.
Managers have their work cut out for them. According to a recent LinkedIn survey, only half of the employees are currently being provided with a positive experience. This leaves ample room for improvement. There’s no singular cause for dissatisfaction. Usually, there are multiple overlapping factors. Sometimes it’s out of your control, such as a personal issue. Usually, when an employee is having a negative experience in the workplace, the responsibility does lie with the employer.
What Not to Do
It’s important to recognize how not to solve the problem: quick fixes. Negative employee experience cannot be fixed by offering small amenities. Small amenities can have the opposite of the intended effect, as they can make managers seem condescending and out of touch.
What You Should Do
So if it can’t be remedied quickly, what are some steps organizations can take? True success comes from communicating with employees and prospective candidates, you can understand their desires on an intimate level, and respond explicitly to their needs.
Employees today have a strong vision and want their work to serve a greater purpose than simply profit. For this reason, most forward-thinking organizations have introduced some kind of social good program. Creating opportunities for employees to act altruistically can be crucial to creating a positive employee experience.
Many employee grievances are explicitly related to lackluster compensation and benefits. If you’re wondering why employees are reporting negative experiences, you should look at wages first. If employees feel or know, based on the industry, they are underpaid, that's not a positive experience. Employees can also become disgruntled if they feel they aren’t being paid their worth. Some companies are adopting pay transparency policies to ease these tensions.
Instead of spending time filling out forms, employees want to feel like they’re learning, and meeting their personal goals. Many organizations have found success by developing a learning culture, in which employees are encouraged to develop new skills, even if they may not directly impact all projects. The point of a learning culture is to be open-ended, so employees feel as though their independent goals can be accommodated by your organization, even if their ROI is not immediately obvious. A learning culture can and should be part of an effort to reform company culture to foster positive employee experience.
Putting it all together
You truly can’t put a price tag on positive employee experience. By taking tangible steps to ensure the well-being of each employee, you will be able to grow talent within your organization, boost productivity, and cultivate loyalty. Your employees will become your most coveted brand representatives, and they will bring more to the table than you ask of them. But none of this comes from offering perks and small amenities. Real, tangible benefits, and on-the-job opportunities for learning and social good, are by far the best way to create a positive employee experience that yields real rewards.