Defining and maximizing performance through the employee experience
Strengthening the employee experience has numerous outcomes for an organization — the ultimate being a higher-performing workforce that, in turn, impacts business outcomes. At WSA, we empower organizations to optimize their employees’ experience based on data and science. Data tells the story of an organization’s current state, and science empowers us to improve what truly matters to employees. These efforts may encompass multiple factors including engagement; diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging; culture; and optimizing the moments that matter to your employees. Through science, consulting, and content, we bring precision to enhance the employee experience as well as the collective performance of your workforce.
A poor employee experience creates a poor business. If employees feel they don’t belong, if they aren’t motivated by leaders, or if they are ill-equipped for the job at hand, they quickly become disengaged and lose their commitment at an alarming rate.
When your employee experience is leveraged to its fullest, it can become the single largest competitive advantage for attracting the best talent and making a difference on your bottom line. It’s an ongoing effort, not a one-and-done process. Think about it: We spend more of our waking lives at work than doing anything else over the entire course of our lifetime. Aside from our spouses, children, families, etc., work is the next most important aspect of our lives. Every hour we spend at work, we are experiencing multiple interactions, a range of emotions, and questioning the value of our time and efforts. Truly understanding this employee experience — and the appropriate actions to maximize it — is the only way lead effectively.
The key to developing a higher-performing workforce is understanding where your organization is and knowing the right levers to pull over time to make progress. Data is driven by science, and science leads to outcomes.
There are specific components of the employee experience that we know make an important impact on business outcomes. These components can be measured and addressed separately but are all connected by one science and collectively work together to drive outcomes.
Data and science are a requirement for understanding what actions are needed to maximize performance within your workforce. It all starts with engagement. If engagement is low, increasing engagement and the “care-factor” of employees is the first priority. If engagement is high, it’s about refining the other aspects of the employee experience that enable us to continually move the needle. The only way to truly know where to start is to let data and science lead the way.
Employee engagement is truly the heart of the science of a high-performing workforce. Engagement provides a baseline of what folks care about at the organization, what motivates them to work harder, stay longer, and care more. When engagement is combined with equipping employees to do their job right and well, it creates a strong foundation for high performance. Defining how to “engage and equip” your workforce is the basis of the WSA engagement model that brings together the art and the science.
Defined as fostering equitable processes and practices at your organization. Research has shown that inherently there are unconscious biases and inequitable practices at play that enter into leadership decisions within almost every organization. The fact that these are unintentional — and the notion that they are likely not decisions being made consciously — leads to the importance of pinpointing where inequity may be happening and eliminating them so everyone reaps the benefit of working in an equitable workforce.
Culture is the bridge between retention and engagement, and it must be managed carefully. There is simply no ignoring it. It has a powerful impact on organizational engagement and retention that directly reflects the attention given to active cultural management. If culture is not managed effectively, it can inhibit progress and become counterproductive to company objectives.
Experience management is a broad term that gets at all the processes in place to ensure that employees are equipped to do their job well and in the most efficient and effective way possible. Examples of experience management may include optimizing programs such as the candidate experience, onboarding, exiting, remote working, mental health, and well-being. Experience management can be ensuring that employees have the right tools, equipment, and training they need to be effective. It can also be ensuring that investments made towards employee benefit and recognition programs are optimized.