Businesses must act now to hold on to most valuable asset

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By Nicole Alvino, Co-Founder and CSO, Firstup

Employees across the globe are voting with their feet, with a well-documented post-pandemic resignation boom already underway. It seems that the last eighteen months or so has given people the time to pause for thought, to reflect on their workplace environment, and many it seems are becoming disillusioned with their working life, and more disconnected from their employer than ever before.

Indeed, recent research we conducted alludes to this disillusionment and has revealed that employees not only feel undervalued, but uninformed, and un-unified. This is particularly relevant to frontline workers. Even though we have always known how important frontline workers are to a company’s bottom line, when it comes to engagement and technology, regardless of industry, they continue to be left behind.

However, with the competition for talent well underway, employers will struggle to not only retain but also attract talent if their Digital Employee Experience (DEX) is not working for their entire workforce.

Competition for talent
With 38% of those we surveyed wanting better lines of communication between execs and employees, and 20% wanting company communications to be delivered to where they spend their workday, it is clear that employees are increasingly looking for their employers to meet them where they are – providing the information they need in a way that works for them.

They are seeking out leaders that will give them the experience they want and need, meaning that businesses must act urgently to make communication accessible across the board and ensure that all employees are benefitting from an excellent DEX in order to not only retain but also attract talent.

Those business leaders that act now to ensure an excellent DEX for 100% of their workforce will be the ones that remain competitive on the global stage. Packaging manufacturing giant Amcor has done just that, overhauling an antiquated communications platform that was failing to reach 65% of the workforce.

According to Mark Hein, Director, Corporate Communications for Amcor Flexibles North America, when its employee surveys indicated that frontline employees didn’t feel like they had a direct connection to the pulse of the business, this was the catalyst to roll out a digital platform that everyone could access, allowing them to roll out information to the entire workforce quickly and efficiently.

Unsurprisingly this initiative has been well received by Amcor employees, with feedback about how useful it is to be able to have all the company information that they want to have, as well as what they need, at their fingertips.

There’s no doubt that Amcor’s proactive approach to providing an environment that aligns with employee needs will undoubtedly benefit their talent retention and acquisition. So, how can other businesses follow suit and ensure they become a company that people are flocking to, rather than leaving?

A well thought out engagement strategy, coupled with innovative technology, holds the key to empowering a businesses’ frontline workers, and creating a workforce for the future:

  • Optimise your internal comms

The first, and critical, step is to reassess existing communication channels. It is fruitless to use email to try and reach a worker that doesn’t sit behind a desk. It is critical that employees around the business can access the information they need from any device, whenever it suits them – be that on a mobile phone, computer, or kiosk. Giving employees autonomy over how they engage with the business and providing them with information that is actually relevant to them will not only increase feelings of worth, but will also encourage connectivity and alignment with business objectives overall.

  • Invest in your onboarding process

Prioritise a workforce communications platform to support employee onboarding. This will help new employees to settle in as quickly as possible, encouraging an understanding of the company culture and values as well as enabling the employee to have a clear understanding of goals and expectations from the start, not to mention being able to easily access the information needed to do their job.

  • Recognise your frontline workers

All of us have a need to feel appreciated for our work, and frontline workers are no exception. At present many employee recognition initiatives, or ‘perks’ still focus on those behind a desk, but if a company is to remain engaged with its workforce as a whole, this needs to change. Coupled with publicly acknowledging achievements and milestones, businesses need to reflect on how they can provide deskless workers with the same level of flexibility afforded to their in-office counterparts. Of course, not all roles can be done remotely, but showing employees they are trusted, and focusing on output rather than input (or location) will go a long way to bridging this gap.

Creating the right digital employee experience is crucial to business success and survival on the global stage. Taking the time to assess how communications can be transformed into an excellent DEX for all will ensure company workforces are future proofed — attracting the talent needed to compete and survive in this digital world. Those that step up and provide a top level digital experience, and consider how they can provide flexibility for their workforce, will be the ones that succeed in this new era of work.

 

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