Customer experience (CX) is a top priority for most businesses today. They invest significant resources in overhauling and improving their customers’ experiences on a regular basis. However, an equally important parallel – employee experience (EX) – remains relatively ignored.
Employee experience presents a great opportunity for businesses to attract and retain the best talent. Talented and engaged employees are critical for the success of any organization. While organizations claim to understand this and talk about employees as their “greatest asset,” in reality, addressing employee experience is more talk than action.
Why are employees stuck with outdated, run-of-the-mill processes and tools, even while being responsible for transforming the business for the benefit of end customers?
Why is employee experience so blatantly ignored?
The fundamental reason for this gap is the difficulty of quantifying the ROI of EX. While spending on customer experience is easy to tie to increased sales and revenue, the ROI of employee experience takes the form of increased employee innovation quotients, productivity, and collaboration, as well as enhanced usability – which are all highly valuable, but very difficult to quantify and tie directly to revenue growth.
While quantification remains a challenge, listening to your employees and providing them a wonderful work experience remains an important need.
Improving EX: Listening to your employees
Enterprises need to adopt a holistic approach to employee experience and introduce tools and processes that can continuously gather feedback on it. To put things in perspective, most companies survey their employees once or twice a year, and there is minimal focus on things like what help or support they need from the organization, what will make their workplace experience better, and what could make them more innovative and collaborative at work. Many companies do not even conduct these kinds of surveys at all. Without a feedback system, how can we provide employees with a superior workplace experience?
Organizations also need to create a running list of high-priority internal workplace experience improvements, ideally mapping the improvements to the needs of individual employee personas. To better understand and cater to the requirements of these personas, businesses should directly involve their employees through focus group discussions and use their input to develop new tools and processes or improve existing ones.
Experience, whether it’s internal or external, is no longer about merely making things look good. It is about how technology is used to create better ways of doing things, how it is deployed to empower end users, and how it can make life easier – for both customers and employees.
Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, says: “Take care of your employees, and they will take care of your customers.” Enterprises need to see their employees as customers in their own right, people who are well aware of the attention the customer experience is getting. By doing so, businesses will transcend the issues created by substandard, one-size-fits-all employee experiences, such as employee disappointment, frustration, and productivity loss.
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Disclaimer: The ideas, views, and opinions expressed in this post represent my own views and not those of any of my current or previous employers. Names, logos, and other proprietary information quoted (if any) in this blog are the property of respective companies/owners/individuals and are mentioned here for reference purposes only.