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6 ways employee experience 4.0 boosts employee relations

Clay Walsh

Last Updated: 26 May 2023

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There’s been a lot of development around about the concept of Employee Experience 4.0 from thought leaders like Josh Bersin on how our EX, or employee experience, works to boost employee relations. EX 4.0 represents a new way of cultivating our daily employee experiences to create the best work environments possible using real time, automated feedback that triggers strategic alerts and automated responses. Rather than waiting for problems to reach critical mass multifaceted methods of data aggregation allow us to more efficiently than ever resolve employee concerns, or prevent them from escalating in the first place!

How do we implement EX 4.0? It's a combination of acquiring the right HR tech tools and utilizing best practices thinking to curate employee experiences and leave your workforce happy and engaged. Let's dive deeper!

EX 4.0: How Did We Get Here?

In the earliest days of measuring employee experience we had rudimentary tools like annual surveys, focused on benchmarking, and pulse surveys, focused on mobile feedback, that helped us glean insights into what was on the minds of our employees. The issue? This data is stagnant, and keeps us from taking proactive steps to create positive workforce cultures by identifying and improving key experiences in an employee lifecycle. So, what is EX 4.0?

Key Takeaway: Early methods of employee experience management focused on tailoring future experiences around past feedback, rather than real time and proactive problem solving.

Defining EX 4.0: Digital Transformation and Instrumented Action

The most meaningful change about EX 4.0 is that we’ve thrown the term “engagement” out the window, and have shifted to using the term “employee experience.” Why? Because it’s not about creating engaged employees, it’s about holistically measuring your employees’ experiences at your company from their interview process through to their departure. It’s about getting real time feedback and integrating HR tech that raises proactive alerts and is focused on action rather than reaction. So, how can you make the transition? Good thing we’ve got 6 easy to implement takeaways just for you!

Key Takeaway: EX 4.0 is about taking action proactively based on systems in place that raise alerts and ensure HRBPs can act effectively with agility.



6 EX 4.0 takeaways you can plug into your company today

1. Measure A Variety of Inputs to Ensure Strong Employee Relationship Management

In the days of annual surveys, you received information once a year on how your employees were feeling. Now maybe you have pulse surveys that allow you to capture employee sentiment in real time. However, if you’re solely relying on those factors you’re missing out on other key opportunities to collect data, some soft elements and some hard. Tracking observed behaviors, like the amount of days taken for personal time off, volunteer work, and non-mandatory events attended can help you see who is really engaged.

Further, indirect sources of feedback, like performance evaluations, 360 feedback, and average project turnaround time can help you tell who is really involved. Check out how Puma used AI data collection to boost 91% of employee experience factors to learn more about effectively getting inputs from a variety of sources. 

Key Takeaway: Don’t be overly reliant on stagnant forms of data collection; instead be proactive and attentive to small details that can help you tell how employees are feeling.

2. Build response teams within your organization to boost HR-Employee Relations:

Tons of organizations did the right thing and immediately built out COVID-19 management teams within their companies to help smooth the transition to work from home. If your firm did that, congrats, you’re closer to EX 4.0 than you know! But the work doesn’t stop there. Tailor specialized teams with existing company members whose skill sets align with the requirements.

For example, let’s say one of your employees seems to be struggling with mental health issues based on their feedback to pulse surveys and the indirect signals mentioned above. Build a team of employees you know are sensitive to mental health issues, have dealt with them in the past, or have degrees or industry expertise to reach out to that employee. Knowing that they’re valued and that people within the organization understand their issues is a big part of improving employee relations, and an aspect of mindful leadership.

Key Takeaway: Create customized response teams within your organization to help intervene in a variety of situations, whether they be mental health, difficulties working from home, performance improvement, or more.

3. Making Sure the Right Feedback Ends Up in Right Place:

Under old EX models feedback from employees often took far too long to get to the right place. Simply raising tickets to HR required a ton of HRBP bandwidth to sift through the concerns, identify the root issue, and then handoff and brief the person who was in charge of resolving the concern. It’s just an inefficient system, period. Fortunately, new, advanced forms of HR tech are helping to eliminate the manual processing that goes into resolving concerns and in turn can help expedite the process of issue resolution.

For example, an AI chatbot like Amber has an advanced language recognition and differentiation engine (covered in this crisp white paper) that lets her process and filter through employee feedback to make sure it ends up at the right place. Plus, you can customize which stakeholders have access to what feedback, helping you manually ensure the inputs reach the right people.

Key Takeaway: Make sure you’re using the right HR tech to get feedback to the right stakeholders to allow for proactive interventions rather than wasting time with manual differentiation.

4. Constantly Reinvent the Status Quo to See the Relationship Between Motivation and Performance

Now that you’re receiving bundles of actionable data, it’s imperative you’re willing and able to course correct on the fly. You should be able to identify the touch points where your organization is lagging (it could be something as small as difficulties getting access cards set up!) and adjust the process rapidly. With the right technology, and the learnings on agility we’ve gleaned from the past year, HR teams are uniquely positioned to move key business levers by reacting so fast people barely notice the issue.

Check out our deep dive into attrition strategies if you want to know more about how being proactive and making attrition predictable can help you solve problems as they emerge, instead of before they hit a tipping point.

Key Takeaway: Don’t wait for problems to become big problems, solve them when they’re in their infancy by acting quickly on data aggregated from a variety of sources.

5. Ensure high level accountability to build mindful leaders:

Now more than ever C-Suite level position holders need to be mindful of the concerns of their workforce to build positive workplace cultures and boost employee relations. Leaders need to buy-in to the concept that they’re a primary driver of employee experience and if they don’t take agency or accountability in this area then all further initiatives will fall through.

Considering they’re often the decision makers when it comes to spending on HR tech, making sure your organization has mindful leaders who will dedicate their time to making a better EX for all employees is paramount as we transition to EX 4.0. Things like town halls, proactive communication, and personal intervention in certain situations are all ways to ensure you’re building mindful leaders in your org.

At Tata CLiQ, the CEO (with some help from amber) personally drives all engagement efforts. Go ahead and read our blog on making mindful leaders if you’re interested in learning more.

Key Takeaways: Accountable, mindful leaders will be actively engaged in EX strategies and take time to ensure positive employee experiences by communicating and engaging with their workforce.

6. Identifying Target Areas to Your Boost Employer-Employee Relationship

While the target for most, if not all, companies in the wake of the pandemic was creating safe, functional workspaces, we’re beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel and return to a world where workplace safety isn’t the number one issue on everyone’s minds at all times. That means now is the best time to begin identifying and structuring your action plans and areas of improvement so that you can hit the ground running when focus shifts. Let’s say onboarding has been an issue at your organization to this point, but you can’t quite figure out why.

Using the HR tech you have, and your own best practices thinking, begin to work out data collection strategies that will give you the most actionable insights possible for onboarding. Then, as more members join your team, consistently implement your learnings and turn them into agile strategies to improve onboarding. By drilling down on target areas rather than EX as a broad concept you can move crucial levers rather than barely shifting multiple, just like how Sharaf DG focused on attrition and saved 82% of at-risk employees using AI.

Key Takeaway: Identify focus areas for your EX efforts and double down with data aggregation and best practices thinking to improve those aspects of your organization.

Ex 4.0: Building Your Employee Relations Strategy with People Analytics

It’s an exciting time for the HR world as we move into a new era of people management and measuring employee experience. As we can more accurately identify touch points we can more effectively retain top talent through workplace analytics. Further, we can expect to see more and more connected employees as they begin to see how HR is using tech and best practices thinking to drive experience and boost employee relations. 

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