The workplace of today is different than it has been in the past. Things continue changing with the evolving expectations of employees and stakeholders. Enterprises need to be able to react to and predict these trends.
Tuning into your workforce is one of the key pieces of creating a more cohesive corporate culture. This requires listening to the employee experience through a variety of means. It doesn’t matter the industry, if people are unhappy in their position, the good employees will go somewhere else. Let’s take a look at why tuning into your workforce is important, as well as some ways organizations can do a better job of it.
Why Does Tuning Into Your Workforce Matter?
As already mentioned, probably the most obvious reason why tuning into your workforce matters is because otherwise you won’t be able to retain top talent. This is becoming an ever-pressing consideration in an increasingly competitive marketplace. Attracting the brightest and hardest working individuals will lay the foundations for success.
While this is all pretty intuitive, the way to actually go about accomplishing it all is a lot less straightforward. After all, even if you do want to take special initiatives to satisfy your employees, do you really know their underlying desires? This is where you have to take the idea of tuning into your workforce and employee listening to the next level.
For starters, you need to reimagine your definition of the employee experience. It’s not about having holiday parties and casual Fridays. While these sorts of perks can be nice additions, they don’t really provide the essential gel to employee experience that actually stick with people.
Of course people want to be paid more for their work. That’s simply human nature. But appealing to these most basic of instincts isn’t going to be good enough for the most valuable employees. Running an employee engagement survey can help get a better idea of the pulse within your organization.
Data collected by Harvard Business Review shows that, in fact, there are some clear hierarchical wants by the average employee when deciding between more pay versus better benefits. After concerns with getting premium insurance, the next four items all had to do with having more flexibility. How would an organization be able to know things like this about their employee base without taking the time to discover it? Herein lies the clear motivation for tuning into your workforce.
There’s still, however, a major question that needs to be answered here. While it’s clear that employee listening is a critical part of building a better workplace, there’s no obvious path toward accomplishing this.
How Should Enterprises Get The Most Out Of Employee Listening?
Some executives might think tuning into the workforce is something that can be done as easily as tuning into an old radio. Maybe these individuals are forgetting how frustrating it used to be to get static and a nearly inaudible connection with this technology. No, tuning into your workforce isn’t like flipping a switch and turning a dial.
Enterprises that are serious about employee listening should consider finding a consulting partner for the job. Not only will they have the right personnel and technology to help facilitate this process, but this also won’t be their first rodeo—meaning you can get accurate, actionable insights sooner. Ultimately, tuning into your workforce is about determining the best paths for internal change. Discovering these avenues is nearly impossible without the unbiased perspective of an outsider.
Furthermore, tuning into your workforce isn’t something that can just happen in isolation. It needs to be a comprehensive, ongoing process that begins at the interview stage and ends when individuals head into retirement, while collecting feedback through the entire interim. By leveraging a consulting partner, you can do employee listening the right way through the whole lifecycle.
Tuning into your workforce isn’t just a good idea; it’s essential for staying competitive in today’s economy. Your enterprise will only be able to retain the best talent if it takes a serious approach to employee listening.