Why has increasing employee experiences has been the rage in HR and People Operations teams? While employee engagement measured the emotional attachment and dedication employees had to the company’s brand, their teams, and managers to generate loyalty and discretionary effort, the reach of employee experiences (EX) is broader and improvements in EX dramatically improves a company’s bottom line.
Researchers are finding that employee engagement is no longer enough due to the stress and rapid change in the workforce. EX, on the other hand, measures the totality of interactions employees have with companies throughout the employee life cycle from recruiting to leaving the company. The most recent research shows that improvements in employee experiences don’t occur without investment in digital technology.
We have known for years that employee engagement has improved morale and also productivity. How much? Gallup reports that its clients who have increased their percentage of engaged employees to 70 percent or higher have seen their workplaces completely transform, with corresponding improvements in growth and profits. In its 2021 report, Gallup reports that engagement measures have proven through 10 meta-analyses that employee engagement correlates strongly with positive performance outcomes, such as profitability, productivity, sales, safety, and retention. Engaged employees act differently at work. They go above and beyond to surpass expectations, which gives their organizations a competitive edge. Gallup has found that the importance of employee engagement to business outcomes increases during times of crisis. Unfortunately, few employers achieve a 70 percent or higher employee engagement score.
Gallup concludes in its report that improving employee engagement is not enough anymore.
During these times of endemic, new work models, and rising stress, employers need to improve the totality of their employees’ experiences and their overall well-being. This requires excellent communications and empathy from their team leaders and the interactions they have with their companies’ processes and digital systems. It requires collecting data to measure the quality of these interactions and employee’s satisfaction with these experiences – and that is where today’s digital tools come in.
Empirical research shows that companies that invest in improving EX will significantly improve their bottom lines. Executives surveyed for the 2019 Economist Intelligence Unit report, “The Experience of Work,” named a range of benefits derived from investing in EX. They include improvements in people metrics such as productivity (cited by 43% of respondents), employee engagement (41%), talent retention (30%), innovation/creativity (28%), and talent recruitment (21%). The surveyed executives cite other business benefits, including improved customer experience and satisfaction (36%), improved profitability (31%), and accelerated digital transformation (23%).
How do today’s tools improve employee experiences? Getting feedback from employees is being transformed by today’s HR digital technology. While employee satisfaction surveys provided statistically reliable and complete information to employers about their employees, they were long and often administered annually. Today’s digital intelligent assistants, like MeBeBot’s Intelligent Assistant, guide employees through onboarding and answering commonly asked everyday questions of HR and IT. By tracking their questions and engaging with the employees, intelligent assistants can identify the most common concerns and emerging new issues. In addition, many also offer short pulse surveys (through Teams and Slack) to further clarity from employees on important issues and initiatives.
Chatbots can gather measures on employee interactions with the company’s major processes that employee engagement never considered, such as the convenience of the onboarding process and clarity of benefit open enrollment choices. In addition, by answering commonly asked employee questions, chatbots fill a massive void of providing accurate answers to commonly asked questions 24/7 and even helping employees find additional resources and begin a process.
The Economists Intelligence Unit has discovered that investments in HR digital technology enormously improves employee experiences in many ways, such as the following:
- Allowing easy access to information required to get the job done
- Ability to work from anywhere (which is critical in today’s hybrid and remote work models)
- Ease of use
- Consumer-like user experience
- Choice of devices
- Choice of applications
Improving employee experiences requires strategy, planning, tactics, data, and measures, like any business strategy. As clearly demonstrated by the Economists Economic Unit, it also requires investments in digital technology.
Today’s human resources organizations (combined with people operations and people analytics groups) are beginning to understand the trove of employee information that resides in their digital technology. The most successful of these organizations also have talent management plans with business strategies, goals, and measures for significant HR and workforce leadership processes such as recruiting, ongoing employee feedback, learning, performance management, benefits enrollment, and salary administration, to name a few.
MeBeBot’s Intelligent Assistant provides the technology solution to automatically allow your company to answer employees commonly asked questions and to track their needs/concerns and identify emerging issues. Our friendly bot even asks, “was this helpful?” to gather instant feedback on the quality and accuracy of the answer provided. With MeBeBot’s Intelligent Assistant, you can also push out notifications/reminders and gather employee feedback instantly or send out important company communications (alerts, reminders, and notifications).
MeBeBot’s Intelligent Assistant leverages Artificial Intelligence, (using Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning), to deliver a 90 percent accuracy rate with answers for thousands of employees across the globe. Better yet, our Intelligent Assistant installs in under 30 minutes as an app in Teams or Slack, is affordable, and provides our clients with a $250k to $1M return on investment within a year.
Just as importantly, MeBeBot provides all of the advantages identified in the Economists Intelligent Units report (above): easy access, work from anywhere, ease of use, consumer-like experience, choice of devices, and choice of applications.