Why it's time for HR to think like a brand


HR leaders should think like brands

Think about the last time you watched Netflix, browsed Amazon, or ordered a ride from your Uber or Lyft apps. Were you able to do what you wanted and get what you needed quickly and without frustration? Would you go so far as to say the experience was a joy?

If you answered “yes” to either question, you can thank these brands for investing in the customer experience. They haven’t just improved the customer experience; they’ve redefined it.

You may be asking why this is relevant to you, an HR professional. It’s because these brands are also redefining expectations in your world. The better the experiences your employees have with these consumer brands, the greater expectations they’ll have—even in the workplace.

Smart companies should take cues from Amazon and Netflix and other innovators and work to become laser-focused on the employee experience. The benefits of doing so are undeniable: Jacob Morgan, author of “The Employee Experience Advantage,” found in his research that companies that invest in improving employee experience report having twice the average revenue and four times the average profit of other organizations.

How do you get there? HR leaders can design and deliver experiences that make employees’ lives easier and work more enjoyable by bringing in colleagues from IT and other functional areas to support your efforts and help make your vision for employee experience a reality. Here are a few recommendations to help guide the process:

  • Adopt an employee-centric service mindset. Since its inception in 1997, Amazon has been relentlessly customer obsessed, so how can HR become employee obsessed? Amazon uses personalization tactics to make the shopping experience seamless for all visitors. But in the world of work, the number of employee-facing systems has increased and employees are feeling the stress.

    Like Amazon, you can use an employee experience platform to deliver an intelligent, self-serving experience that supports employees in their day-to-day work needs. An experience platform will help organizations deliver an integrated employee experience by giving employees a single place to manage their work needs, experiences, and transitions while shielding them from back-end systems and complexity.

  • Better understand what employees really want. Most employees share common experiences like on-boarding, career development, planning for a leave, or even resigning. Assess these critical moments in the employee journey, identify potential points of failure, and determine how you can better meet their needs and expectations.

    Imagine being able to streamline employee onboarding by automating processes that require involvement from HR, IT, and other departments. Get these new hires up to speed quickly by creating a central location for all critical onboarding materials, such as training videos, learning courses, and documentation.

  • Implement UX principles to ensure ongoing success. Employee behaviors and expectations are constantly changing, so it’s crucial to keep a constant pulse on the community and refine practices based on this input. Netflix, for instance, relies on customer feedback and behavioral data to continually improve its interface and content recommendations. Employ a combination of ongoing surveys, discussion forums, and omni-channel feedback tools to paint a detailed picture of how the employee experience is perceived—and how it can be improved.

Historically, HR has been the primary advocate for an organization’s employees. But smart business leaders know that employee experience has a direct impact on business success. Now is the time to align HR and IT and implement a transformative mindset that supports employee-centric systems and experiences.

To learn more about how other organizations are differentiating with the employee experience, download our ebook, HR and IT Better Together.

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