The future and mutuality of HR and technology.
The Employee Journey is a travelling tale centered around the employee who must be supported and facilitated, in order to grow and become the protagonist and hero of his/her own story. That might be the most appropriate conclusion drawn during the HR Tech Meetup on recent April the 20th. Once again a bubbly group of visitors from all layers of the HR community came together to discuss the future and mutuality of HR and technology.
Personally, this was the first time I attended such a meetup, but after a warm welcoming by our host Booking.com in the heart of Amsterdam, and an energetic buzz filling the room, I immediately felt right at home. It was promised to be an interesting, purposeful and delightful late afternoon.
Designing the employee journey as a process must go both ways, from the perspective of the organization as well as from the employee’s world of experience, thus ensuring that this process serves both parties.
Keynote: a successful employee journey
Keynote speakers Wendy van Ierschot, Gerrit Brouwer and Ashraf Ramzy combined their voices to at least make one message clear to all visitors: a successful employee journey can only be realized when it is designed from the employee’s perspective, exactly like we’re already doing for the customer journey.
Where technology is about more than merely digitizing paperwork, but rather about creating true and positive experiences. Think of apps that are meant to make an onboarding process more fun and interactive (aside from efficient), video recruitment (take Hunkemöller and Cameo, for instance), or an online community that serves to empower a new employee and create camaraderie early on.
The use of CRM systems
Other than that, the discussion around how to use CRM-systems to map and improve a complete employee experience would not really take off. More than that, we concluded that such systems, covering the scope and containing more than just administration, are yet to be developed.
After bouncing back and forth ideas, feeding the synergy among the present HR professionals, one thing at least became clear: the employee journey must first be specified before such systems can actually be developed. Let us first start mapping and measuring that journey.
The employee journey must first be specified before we can develop CRM-systems that map and improve a complete employee journey.
How to measure?
Then voices emerged from the room: can positive experiences such as ‘happiness’ be measured? As far as I’m personally concerned: when a thing can be defined, it can be measured. So, metrically defining the positive experiences that should make up the employee journey: that’s the tricky part. And who is better suited to define wanted, positive experience that would make an employee journey successful, than the (future) employee himself?
Earlier in the meetup, Wendy van Ierschot already shared with us the point of view of Design Thinking: designing the employee journey as a process must go both ways, from the perspective of the organization as well as from the employee’s world of experience, thus ensuring that this process serves both parties. To reach back to the first message in this article: involving the employee is the key to designing a successful employee journey.
During the past decade, the world of HR has become increasingly more knowledgeable regarding topics such as happiness at work, employee engagement, trust and appreciation/recognition. Long before that, we already knew that happy and loyal customers help us generate better business.
Slowly but surely, realization is sinking in that the employee is pretty much the customer’s twin brother.
Employee is the customer’s twin
We’re caught up on using big data to gather insights in customer affairs, to help us make better decisions and predictions. Slowly but surely, realization is sinking in that the employee is pretty much the customer’s twin brother.
Happy and loyal employees also, in various ways, help us generate better business. They also tell a travelling tale. Meet us at touchpoints: their experience can also be mapped, measured, and influenced. And to close this down on a note that makes me truly happy: that employee journey is also a bearer of the future of people-centered data science and people analytics.