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Employee Engagement | 7 minute read

How to elevate the employee experience

April 27, 2022


Our LinkedIn poll asking HR leaders' top goals for 2022 — with elevating employee experience being the major priority.

A robust employee experience can help you retain talent. We’re currently experiencing one of the most competitive job markets in history, so employee experience has fast become a priority for many HR and talent acquisition teams.  

We asked some of our leaders at WilsonHCG to share their top tip on building a culture that continuously supports a great employee experience: 

Empower your people 

Trusting your people will pay dividends. Micromanagement not only kills morale, but it stifles innovation. A key to strong leadership is guiding staff to make decisions and innovate. Valuing ideas that aren’t your own is a must for empowering your workforce.

-John Wilson, CEO, WilsonHCG 

Prioritize empathy as a leader 

If you understand how other people feel, you will be better placed to help them. Empathy plays a key role in relationship building and can really help to build long-lasting relationships which are based not just on trust, but mutual respect. In turn, this increases collaboration and productivity. Life is more stressful than it’s ever been and people need to feel at ease reaching out for help from their managers as and when they need it. The pandemic has raised the importance of empathy and well-being and leaders must continue to exercise empathy and compassion. 

-Kim Pope, COO, WilsonHCG 

Progress, not perfection 

Corporate social responsibility is a key driver for today’s workers. People want to work for good companies. In fact, according to a Porter Novelli report, 88% of employees said companies must positively impact society and not just be around for the purpose of making money. Gather input through anonymous surveys on what changes employees want to see with your sustainability and community efforts and implement what you can when you can. The surest way to support a positive employee experience is by doing what you say you’re going to do. Employees want to see progress — so be prepared to update regularly on the impact your CSR program is having. By following through on CSR initiatives, you’ll foster a workplace where employees feel listened to and part of something bigger. 

-Marisol Hughes, EVP and general counsel, WilsonHCG 

Provide growth opportunities for employees 

Giving people space to learn means people move roles, not companies. Learning and development (L&D) programs give employees the chance to develop their careers and they help businesses access future skills. Consider implementing stretch projects, or assignments that challenge employees across different areas of the business to grow beyond their current level of expertise or skill. This means employees can interact with different departments and learn new skills. It helps to keep them both engaged and interested. 

-Craig Sweeney, Executive vice president of global strategic talent solutions, WilsonHCG 

Develop competitive total rewards programs 

While compensation is super important (it always will be!), employers must be creative and offer total rewards packages. Prioritize flexibility and work-life blend, mental health and well-being and time off. You need to show employees that you truly value their health and well-being. This is important to prevent burnout and is much needed for those working in a hybrid manner, so they don’t feel like they need to be always on” in remote environments. Acknowledging this and actively taking measures to provide a full scope of benefits, including things like unlimited PTO, is sure to create a top-notch experience and show how much you value your people. 

-Mark Sharland, Global managing director of WilsonCTS, WilsonHCG 

Expedite the hiring process 

Hiring processes need to be slicker and more efficient (especially in APAC) as today’s candidates are juggling multiple offers.  If you still have long gaps between interviews, inadequately trained interviewers and a lack of communication, you will lose out on top talent and risk damaging your employment brand too.  Candidates talk to each other and use review sites and social media to make their voices heard. Improve your candidate experience and onboarding processes so employees feel welcome from the very first application touchpoint until their first day and beyond. 

-Richard Letcher, Co-managing director, Asia 

Focus on feedback with stay interviews 

Make regular feedback a priority all the time — not just when onboarding and conducting exit interviews. Conduct stay interviews and ask employees what they want from their roles. Regular communication prevents gaps in understanding what your workforce wants and will prevent them leaving. And don’t just gather feedback, act upon it. At WilsonHCG, we do pulse surveys, stay interviews, townhalls, monthly companywide calls, quarterly reviews and much more to understand what our people want. We listen and we act.  

-Lesley Taylor, Senior vice president of talent operations, EMEA, WilsonHCG 

Learn more about what recruiting metrics you should be tracking to highlight bottom-line impact 

Making an impact, one employee at a time 

Be sure to stay faithful to your EVP for the entirety of a candidate’s journey, and that includes during their employment as well. Every organization’s culture is different — but there are a few key ingredients to ensuring a great employee experience. Have honest discussions regularly to ensure people feel heard and respected and make changes to improve every day. Doing so will boost retention and even employee referrals.

About WilsonHCG

WilsonHCG is an award-winning, global leader in total talent solutions. Operating as a strategic partner, it helps some of the world’s most admired brands build comprehensive talent functions. With a global presence spanning more than 65 countries and six continents, WilsonHCG provides a full suite of configurable talent services including recruitment process outsourcing (RPO), executive search, contingent workforce solutions, talent consulting and talent intelligence.