Recreating Employee Experience In The Covid Era
Employee experience had changed drastically since early 2020 when Covid reared its ugly head. The pandemic is putting business leaders through a gauntlet of tests. It is assessing their abilities in guiding their workforce to navigate a rapid succession of changes.
This paradigm is new. Leaders are charting through unfamiliar territory, creating and fostering collaboration as remote working becomes the norm. Many aspects of employee experience that were rooted in collaboration under the same roof have changed. Interaction between colleagues has shifted in many ways. Let’s take a glimpse into how things are now.
Employee experience: What has altered?
- Virtual onboarding is in, and warm welcome sessions are out. All official banter happens only with technical support. Video conferencing is the only way you can meet and greet your new colleagues.
- There is a widening lack of direct interaction and guidance between colleagues. As lockdowns are becoming more common, many employees are starting to miss contact and connections.
- Fostering organic mentoring relationships is a huge challenge. Nowadays, interaction needs to be carved out lest it completely disappear.
- Many employees are starting to feel the effects of not demarcating work life from home life and leaving work at work.
Many such adversities combined with illness, anxiety, grief, isolation, and stress pose unimaginable challenges for business leaders. However, instead of focusing on the negative aspects, it will be better to refocus on how we can gain from these challenges.
Here are some proven strategies to reinvent and strengthen the employee experience.
Reinventing Employee Experience: How To Do It?
- Hiring & Onboarding
Move your entire recruitment process online. Recruit, interview, send offer letters, and complete the onboarding process online. Schedule your video meetings well in advance to ensure a smooth onboarding process. Furthermore, it is wise to share files, folders, and meeting details with the recruitment team to ensure perfection. HR managers can create a seamless recruiting and onboarding experience by creating a list of office processes and digitizing it.
- Learning & Development
Mentoring and training employees without direct interaction can be very challenging. However, there are many online strategies to support the development of remote employees. You can choose from the following options:
Target mentoring programs
Online brown-bag seminars
Virtual coffee date sessions
Online learning and training sessions
Peer-to-peer feedback sessions
Apart from these options, HR managers can gather the feedback and opinions of the trainees. They may also suggest a home office stipend to support the employees.
- Employee Monitoring
There is no time like now to transition to monitoring your employees through digitalized solutions. When most of your workforce is geographically displaced, monitoring is crucial to ensure consistent productivity. A good employee monitoring software offers features like:
Web app and usage tracking
Screen capture technology
Integrations and Chrome extensions
Implementing employee monitoring is the need of the hour. It is a brilliant tech solution that helps you keep track of any number of employees under a single platform.
- Flexibility & Well-being
Remote working during such unpredictable times calls for flexibility in working. It can include schedule flexibility and location flexibility. Sometimes, it may require an adaptable schedule that allows your employees to accept a lower salary for a longer vacation. Business leaders should be prepared to implement flexible strategies conducive to the well-being of their staff. Employees should be allowed to customize their work in a way that facilitates their holistic well-being.
- Belonging & Social Recognition
The coexistence of your workforce in an office space gives them a sense of belonging. Unfortunately, remote working has robbed them of this feeling, leaving them deprived of direct interaction. To combat this, businesses need to fill the gap with better solutions for virtual interaction. To foster team bonding, informal video conferencing, games, quizzes, etc., are better options.
Top executives and team leaders also need to prioritize recognition for jobs done well. It is a key factor in the employee experience. A forward-looking organization will leave no stone unturned in acknowledging good performance, albeit online. Team leaders should also ensure that the delegated work contributes to the employee’s professional growth and experience.
- Safety & Security
Safety at the workplace and security of the job are top contenders in employee experience. As governments worldwide announce unlocking strategies, organizations are allowed to operate from their regular offices. This is when business leaders should focus on their employees’ safety by implementing health guidelines and WHO-recommended protocols.
Job security has been a major cause of stress and anxiety. Additionally, employees are facing the threat of job cuts in these unprecedented times. Organizations must be transparent about their job policies and any impending changes. It is important to keep communications open and educate your workforce about the state of affairs.
Taking It One Step At A Time
The current situation can change without a moment’s notice. Hence, this comprehensive approach to reinforcing employee experience requires careful handling. It is wise to take one cautious step at a time and navigate your way to fully implementing these measures.
Invest in HR tech tools that will help you stay well ahead of the curve. The new normal will stay with us for a while until the next big change occurs. To stay in tandem, reinvent your strategies for a better employee experience.