The workplace is evolving rapidly. The onset of the digital era brought with it the internet and mobile smart devices that connect everyone around us in a never-ending web of communication.
As technology progresses, organizations are starting to blur the lines between employees and processes.
At the same time, more organizations are starting to take an internal approach to boost growth. The introduction of tech in the workplace enabled departments and employees to communicate with each other without any inefficiencies getting in the way.
Improved company revenues and higher employee retention through a revolutionized employee experience (EX).
The shift to reevaluating the employee experience shows that companies now understand that with fulfilled employees, comes higher levels of job satisfaction. As a result, companies can retain key staff members.
Millennials and Gen Zs are entirely different from previous generations. Millennials and Gen Zs are the first “digitally native” generation. Being born into an era of mobile technology comes with plenty of advantages, but it presents organizations with a new problem.
The Shift in Tech for the Digital Generation
Millennials and Gen Zs understand how tech influences their lives. From a consumer standpoint, the next generation of employees is at home using mobile tech to drive decisions in their personal lives.
Ordering a food delivery, hailing a ride, or completing your monthly budgeting is all now available through a range of convenient mobile apps.
These consumer-facing apps offer plenty of utility for users because they focus on doing one thing well. As a result, millennials and Gen Zs demand that companies produce the same experience from enterprise applications for business.
Companies that understand the workplace needs of the next generation have a significant advantage over competitors. By offering an environment that provides employees with intelligent, fast, mobile-friendly tech solutions for workflows and processes, you create an environment where people want to work.
The Generational Shift to EX
With more millennials and Gen Zs entering the workplace, and technology playing more of a centralized role in all of our lives, the 9 to 5 workday is no longer necessary.
Most Gen Zs and millennials report being “plugged in” to their work for the majority of the day, regardless of their location. These generations grew up with social media accounts, and they have plenty of experience with collecting information from numerous touchpoints online using mobile devices.
Companies need to bring this same experience into the workplace by implementing intuitive technologies that enhance the employee experience. By digitizing workflows and implementing automated digital processes for repetitive tasks in the workplace, organizations allow the employee to focus on other tasks.
The purpose of implementing tech solutions is not to bring more time to your employee’s workday, but to inspire them and engage with them, making them want to do more with the free time they find available during the workday.
By implementing automation in the digital workplace, companies create an environment that’s conducive to efficiency and productivity. Today’s employees want to know that they’re working in an optimized environment that allows them to produce maximum results.
Employees no longer view time as a barrier to work when they have tech solutions to help them solve issues with work. For example, in the past, going on a conference call with London meant ensuring you were in the office at 5 pm on the East Coast of the U.S, to call through to London first thing in the morning on their time.
With the advent of apps like conferencing tools, such as Skype and go-to-meeting, employees can jump on a conference call from any location, even in the car or train while commuting.
Bringing these tech solutions into the digital workplace allows employees to initiate fluid systems of connectivity and communication that strengthen the employee experience.
When employees increase their engagement with their work, it makes them feel like they’re adding more value to the organization.
When surveyed, millennials and Gen Zs both state that meaning in their work is more important to them than the size of their paycheck. More than 60% of millennials and Gen Zs state that they would take a cut in salary if it meant working for a company where they get a positive employee experience.
Statistics show that companies are starting to wake up to the demands of the next generation of workers. More than 80% of all HR leaders believe that employee experience is vital to organizational growth.
More than 50% of all HR leaders state that they plan to improve workspaces, and plan to provide employees with incentive programs designed to enhance the digital employee experience.
The Switch to Consumer-like Mobile in the Workplace
Another technological change affecting the way workers do work is the continuing rise of digital mobile technology. Both devices and apps are advancing at a rapid pace, and the next generation of employees demands that organizations start integrating these tools into the digital workplace.
Research shows that millennials and Gen Zs want semi-remote work experiences. They want to leave the workplace when it’s necessary, without any hassle from management. At the same time, they also desire the option to work remotely or operate on a flexi-time schedule.
However, this situation plays havoc with managers that need to micromanage processes. Managers need to trust in the tools provided in the digital workplace to monitor employee performance.
With the right tools, management can increase levels of employee engagement and satisfaction while simultaneously boosting productivity.
Sitting at a desk all day is not on the top of the list of priorities for the digital generation. However, with the use of tools that track workflows on cloud platforms, and promote collaboration through easy-to-use interfaces, organizations can still improve workplace efficiencies and boost revenues.
Why Do Organizations Need to Embrace the Digital Workplace Trend?
According to research, U.S employee engagement is currently in a stagnant position. Those companies making the shift to a digital transformation in the workplace find that they outperform other companies in terms of employee engagement by as much as 140% in quarterly revenues.
Innovative companies are finding solutions to challenges in the workplace by mastering the employee experience with the same effort they put into mastering the customer experience. With current employment rates being the lowest in the history of the economy, companies are battling to find talent.
The Shortage of Global Talent
Research shows that one of the toughest challenges facing CEOs in 2020 and beyond, is finding and retaining top talent for their organization. With the digital workplace advancing into the benchmark across all industries for boosting employee engagement, some companies are finding it easier to recruit and retain talent than others.
Employees no longer look at the number on their salary package as the defining factor when considering signing with a company. Today’s modern employees require complete work experiences, as well as an adequate reward for their time.
Companies that focus on the employee experience with the same intensity as the customer experience are those organizations that will come out on top in the war for talent.
An improved employee experience leads to the development of a stronger employee brand. As a result, companies with a strong employer brand tend to attract and retain top talent.
How Can Organizations Build a Positive Employee Experience?
The first place employers need to start with building positive work experience is with the work environment itself. However, it’s important to note that while this is a crucial part of EX, it doesn’t promote any lasting effect with your employees.
For example, you might want to be the cool comp-any that brings a pool table or foosball table into the breakroom, or maybe management feels that they want to offer employees catered lunch services as a perk.
These types of initiatives have a tremendous impact during their introduction. However, the effect wears off, and employees now require this as the baseline for the employee experience. In short, boosting morale and productivity needs a long-term boost to enhancing EX.
Focus on Company Culture
Culture describes the vibe employees have when they think about coming to work, and what they feel during the work experience itself. Companies want to create a culture that’s conducive to growth while remaining supportive.
For instance, the organization can offer learning programs to qualifying employees to boost their skillset. Reinvesting in your employees creates a culture of support and growth through employee advancement.
When employees feel like the organization is supporting their career growth, they are more likely to remain at the company than look for other opportunities.
HR and management may think of EX as another buzzword floating around blogs brought about by execs in Silicon Valley. However, it offers organizations the opportunity to reevaluate the way employees communicate and interact with each other within the company.
The primary goal of creating the ideal employee experience in any organization comes from the motivation to drive organizations through the evolving digital age of business.
When companies realize that the employee experience is as essential to the organization as the customer experience, they are turning the corner to success in the digital age.