Meeting the rising expectations of the modern workforce can prove to be a challenge for many organisations, with the pandemic significantly elevating how important it is to have employees that are happy, loyal and engaged with their work.
According to global research conducted by Gallup, at the majority of most large organisations, employee engagement averaged just 20% during the height of the pandemic in 2020.
Research by Qualtrics in 2021 found that only 57% of Australian and New Zealand employees intended to stay in their current role, while in Australia in 2022, 1.3 million people (or 9.5% of all employed people) changed jobs.
Qualtrics’ 2023 Employee Experience Trends Report found that the number one employee priority is confidence and business success. People want reassurance and security, knowing their job is safe, the organisation they work for is successful, and that they are fairly paid for the work they do.
For business leaders, prioritising and improving employee experiences should be near the top of their lists. Contact the team at 9Yards to get started straight away, or continue reading to learn more.
What is employee experience?
Employee experience (EX) refers to the perceptions and attitudes of employees towards their work environment and their employer. It includes all aspects of an employee’s interaction with their workplace; from their physical environment, to the technology they use.
While customer experience is centred around the interactions between a business and its customers, employee experience focuses on the relationships, processes, and systems that support employees in their work. Both customer experience and employee experience are linked and considered important to the success of a business, with employee experience playing a critical role in creating a culture of engagement, productivity, and innovation that drives business performance.
The factors that contribute to creating an effective employee experience can include business design and strategy, management practices, company culture, technology, and career development opportunities.
For example, technology greatly impacts employee satisfaction and productivity by providing intuitive and user-friendly tools that streamline work processes, making it easier for employees to perform their jobs. By incorporating the latest technology, businesses can create a modern, efficient, and engaging work environment that supports employees, enabling them to perform at their best.
Why should you prioritise employee experience?
1. Increased employee engagement and productivity
Improving employee experience has been shown to increase employee engagement and productivity. Research from McKinsey found that people who had a positive employee experience were 16 times more engaged than those with a negative one. It also showed that they are 8 times more likely to stay at their current organisation.
Organisations looking to improve employee experience should focus on creating a positive work culture, providing the right technology to create a seamless employee experience.
For example, omnichannel capabilities can be adopted across your organisation that not only make a better experience for your customers, but also makes it easier for your employees to do their jobs efficiently. Once each communication channel – forms, chatbots, apps, phone calls, etc – is interconnected, it reduces the necessity to switch between devices and applications, while making data accessibility and security stronger.
This results in happier, more engaged employees, and an improvement to customer experience at the same time.
2. Higher employee retention rates
Maintaining a sense of belonging in the workplace can be just as important as compensation when it comes to retaining employees in the long-term. Research has shown that when employees feel a sense of belonging and inclusion, it leads to greater employee well-being and lower turnover rates.
For example, a recent study by Achievers found that only 23% of workers in Australia felt a strong sense of belonging in their organisation, and just 15% felt that their unique backgrounds and identities were acknowledged and valued. This highlights a greater need for improvement in creating a sense of belonging and inclusion in Australian businesses.
Employment Hero’s 2022 Employee Movement and Retention Report also had some significant findings. For example, many Australian workers are considering resigning in the near future, with nearly 50% planning to do so within the next year. This is especially prevalent among younger workers, with 66% of those aged 18-24 planning to change roles within the next year.
Additionally, a large number of managers and senior executives intend to move within the next 12 months. The situation is more pronounced in Victoria, where employees are 14% more likely to want to change roles.
Those aged 25-34 are more likely to cite lack of career opportunities as the main reason for wanting to leave their current role, and 2 out of 5 Australian workers would consider taking a job overseas, with the leading motivation being the opportunity to travel.
On the other hand, a salary increase could be a significant factor in retaining employees, with 47% of people saying it would encourage them to stay in their current roles. The report also found that 28% of workers currently feel their next step is in a different industry than the one they are currently in.
3. Better financial performance
An organisation’s financial performance can be improved when their focus is shifted to developing better employee experiences. For example, an engaged employee is more likely to provide high-quality customer experiences, resulting in better feedback, increased customer loyalty and happier customers. Prioritising implementing these tools also promotes overall efficiency.
Research also backs up the notion that a highly engaged workforce can have a significant, positive impact on an organisation’s profitability, with some studies finding that it can increase profitability by as much as 21%.
On the other hand, the financial impact of disengaged employees is felt at a global level, with the 2022 Gallup State of the Global Workplace report estimating that low engagement costs the global economy a staggering US$7.8 trillion (AUD$11.2 trillion) annually.
Reach out to our 9Yards consultants
Are you ready to get started with planning to provide better employee experiences that increase engagement and productivity, while still positively impacting your bottom line?
Get in touch with the team at 9Yards to learn how.