Canadian HR Reporter

April 2020 CAN

Canadian HR Reporter is the national journal of human resource management. It features the latest workplace news, HR best practices, employment law commentary and tools and tips for employers to get the most out of their workforce.

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www.hrreporter.com 11 "When the employees speak up, they're usually right," he says. "It's the same discipline as listening to customers… I think the reason this is not intuitively obvious is [because], in a lot of managers' minds, employees are the labour and they do as they're told — and that's just out of date." When it comes to the areas that need improvement for employee experience in Canada, the stats are uniform across different areas: ongoing employee training and simplified administrative processes (both 46 per cent), compensation and benefits and flexible work arrangements (both 45 per cent) and work-life balance (43 per cent). It's a complex problem because some of the benefits that appear to improve the employee experience may not, such as pay, says Bersin. "You could raise people's wages, you could give them better benefits, you could come up with a bunch of new offices and have free food and unlimited vacation — you can do all those things — but if your managers are mean, it may not have as much impact as you thought." Another part of the employee ideas, be more innovative — these are all very correlated concepts." Improving the employee experience While two-thirds (68 per cent) of employers say the employee experience has improved over the past five years, only half (52 per cent) say the experience is positive, found the LinkedIn survey. One big problem? One in three companies do not regularly act on employee feedback, says LinkedIn. Other roadblocks for Canada include: a limited budget (64 per cent), not enough time (63 per cent), not enough people dedicated to the cause (53 per cent), it's not prioritized by leadership (39 per cent) and they can't justify the investment (26 per cent). Listening to employees, and acting on that feedback, is probably the most important step, says Brown. "Disengagement is seven times more likely if employees don't feel like that feedback is being acted upon... If you ask too many things and get too much feedback, you risk falling into that category of not acting." The biggest issue that holds companies back is not listening, says Bersin. experience is hiring the right people, he says. "If you're a very demanding, high- performing 24-7 kind of a company, you have to select people that like that. If you get the wrong people in the company, they're not going to be happy. So, it affects the whole brand of the internal talent." One tip? Don't throw out the past, says Hechter. "There is this tendency, when you get into focusing on the experience, that we need to change everything," she says. "There's a reason why organizations have been successful and much of their legacy strengths need to be maintained. Maybe they need to be refreshed somewhat, but there are cultural characteristics that need to be maintained." Another way to enhance the experience is cultivating transparency, and that's about: How are people promoted? Why are certain people identified more so than others? How are decisions made within the organization? says Hechter. "Individuals are asking to understand more because it's through that understanding that they can identify for themselves that they're aligned with the value if they understand the purpose, if they're aligned with that future vision — that is a huge piece of how people experience your organization." But a big risk is when employers are looking to HR to drive the employee experience, she says. "HR does not in any way, shape or form own the employee experience; in fact, it's the leaders in the business that own the experience — HR is just a facilitator." CHRR "HR does not in any way, shape or form own the employee experience; it's the leaders that own the experience." Ilana Hechter, Mercer

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