In the post-pandemic workplace, employee experience has become all the rage. Where previously companies could get away with minimal to no employee experience initiatives, the tide has now turned in favor of the employees.
Retail & food outlets across the US are staring at a massive staff shortage triggered by a disruption in the talent ecosystem catalyzed by the pandemic. While there is more to the political & social aspect of this problem, one aspect that immediately becomes clear is that employees are no longer willing to put up with stressful jobs.
Combine this with the fact that the demand for talent has never been higher, and it is easy to see who holds the upper hand. This scenario is especially true in the tech talent domain, where, from the current figure of 4.47Mn roles, the talent gap is expected to balloon to over 8Mn by 2026!
This statistic has set the alarm bells ringing across talent acquisition teams and HR strategists.
Talent consultants are busy prescribing everything from quick fixes such as rampant hiring to long-term solutions, including reskilling and upskilling.
Some employers such as Walgreens are coming around and increasing their minimum wages while others are adding generous health & family benefits to attract new talent.
“Always invest in people,” says CEO of Gravity Payments Dan Price. He would know. After all, he slashed his million-dollar payday to increase the minimum salary for his staff.
But there are other avenues organizations can explore before slashing their CEOs’ pay, including a much quicker and easier-to-implement solution that lies right under their noses – leveraging employee feedback to improve the employees’ experience.
The Importance of Employee Feedback
Organizations are often eager to take the feedback of their clients to course-correct and set goals for future deliverables. They too often neglect to take the feedback from the actual value creators – their employees.
Every time they ask their client how satisfied there were with the services rendered, they should also ask their employees,
“How satisfied were you with your work experience?”,
“Where you equipped with all the right tools and support infrastructure to enable your workload?” or may even,
“Do you think that it is feasible to continue delivering this workload, or should we perhaps look at re-organizing the team?”
Unfortunately, in today’s value-creation-driven business economy, such empathetic questions are a rarity.
This, in turn, is causing many employees to prematurely end their assignments in projects and look for greener pastures where their feedback is actively sought.
However, it is still not too late to improve. Investing in actionable employee experience programs that are backed by employee feedback have been shown to
- Reduce attrition by over 55%
- Motivates reskilling/upskilling by ~30%, and helps them move into adjacent in-house roles while also
- Improving overall employee morale and leading to positive brand identity.
Most employers are still unsure about how employee feedback can be leveraged to improve the employee experience. So this article will cover a few important employee feedback techniques you can implement right away.
Pulse Surveys Using HR Portals
HR teams are finding some success in gauging the mood of the workforce by implementing pulse surveys in their HR tools.
Whenever an employee logs onto the HR platform, a pop-up asking them to rate their mood opens up. These can be set to ‘anonymous’ by default. The result is that HR teams can gain unfiltered access into the day-to-day moods of their workforce.
Bi-Annual Employee Engagement Surveys
These bi-annual surveys are much more comprehensive and survey employees on everything from office culture to their aspirations, job satisfaction, amenities provided, and more.
This is one of the most important surveys as far as employee retention is concerned. Six months is more than enough time for an employee to form an image of your organization. And if you make it anonymous with generous text limits, expect some employees to pour their hearts out.
Watch Out for those Review Sites
How often have you checked out your company’s Glassdoor profile and cringed? If this is something that happened far too often, then it might be time to move up that bi-annual employee experience survey.
HR teams must routinely keep track of their organizations performance on sites such as
- Great Place to Work
Any negative comments on these must be replied to immediately, as any delay runs the risk of causing irreversible damage to your employee branding initiatives.
Encourage Democratic Townhalls
Too often have we seen weekly/monthly town hall meetings where senior management hogs all the stage time, and employee feedback is an event that is left for the tail end. In some companies, town halls are just celebratory events and a feedback session is a mere afterthought.
Instead, townhalls must be a feedback-driven session that places the employee experience at the forefront.
Using Artificial Intelligence to Improve Employee Retention
While the above steps require active feedback from your employees, using AI, talent stakeholders can now predict their workforce engagement moods and even take preventative actions.
For example, many of your employees might be feeling unsatisfied with their current roles and might be looking to shift to another company for a better role.
With AI-powered talent intelligence tools, workforce planners can now identify these potential job-hoppers early on as their roles are often facing the threat of immediate or near-future disruption. Then, combined with reskilling or upskilling, they can be enabled to take up an adjacent job role that will ensure their long-term career sustainability.
In fact, studies note that companies actively promoting reskilling among their employees will see a reduction in attrition by as much as 50% in a mere 6 months since implementing the schemes.
AI-powered reskilling tools can tell you the ideal job role for an employee and suggest suitable courses to take to get there and even how long it will take to get there.
Examples of Reskilling
For example, 5G is currently disrupting several job roles such as Network Engineers across the telecom talent domain. But with reskilling, Network Engineers can be easily moved to another new and emerging job role such as 5G virtualization/cloud solution engineer in as little as 3-4 months.
Another job role that is increasingly facing the threat of disruption is that of a Retail Sales Associate in the retail sector. With some augmented data analytics & ERP training, they can be upskilled to the role of a Visual Merchandizer in 6-8 months. This is a highly lucrative and emerging role.
More such examples of successful reskilling case studies are available that justify the importance of implementing successful reskilling & upskilling programs.
Draup for Talent is an AI-powered talent intelligence platform that leverages data to provide talent teams with actionable reskilling programs.