Employee Experience (EX) has become the new buzzword in Asia Pacific. Many firms are turning to EX for reasons including flailing customer experience (CX) ratings, talent shortages, and the threat of automation. While interest in EX is high and organizations have embarked on EX programs to do right by employees, many have failed to move the needle.
“Employee experience (EX) is not about free pizza or the Ping-Pong table. Research shows that good EX is driven by the ability of employees to accomplish their daily tasks. But many Asia Pacific firms flounder here,” said Amit Bhatia, senior analyst and author of the report. “During the research of a new AP-focused EX report I just published, I found that while interest in EX is high in the region, and firms want to do right by employees, firms take missteps in key areas.”
Bhatia noted that some of the missteps that firms are making in their EX programs are:
· Not grasping the full extent of EX. Many of those tasked with improving EX are essentially HR folk re-branded as EX pros; the EX spotlight for most firms is on the employee lifecycle — from hire to retire. Very few focus on understanding employees' daily journeys, improving their productivity, or considering the role that technology plays in all of this — even though these factors have a significant influence on the employee experience.
· Ignoring technology’s influence on EX. Irrespective of the specific nature of the work, most jobs today are heavily tech-dependent. Our research on 14,000 global information workers shows that tech significantly influences EX; six of the 18 drivers in Forrester's Employee Experience Index relate to technology. But many EX initiatives completely ignore the tech dimension.
Despite the overall lack of understanding and practice maturity around the employee experience in Asia Pacific, there are some bright spots: Firms that have been focusing on various dimensions of EX for some time and have realized benefits from it. The report lists Cisco, Volkswagen Australia, BMC Software in India and GoJek in Indonesia as examples of progressive firms who are already seeing the benefits of focusing on EX.
“Take a good, hard look at your EX program. EX is more than the employee lifecycle; it’s about the employee’s daily journey,” said Bhatia.