The Importance of the Employee Workplace Experience

The Importance of the Employee Workplace Experience

As businesses rethink their employee engagement strategy during the return to office transition and amidst the “Great Resignation,” they need to acknowledge that the employee workplace experience has transformed. Learn more about transformational leadership theory.

VergeSense found that 66% of organizations are concerned about the effect of the return to office on the employee experience. So, how is employee wellbeing affected by the work environment?

The workplace experience includes all of the factors related to the work environment that impact employee productivity, comfort, wellbeing, and engagement. This can include company culture, office design and amenities, workplace policies, and office technology. Companies with a positive workplace experience retain employees and see benefits like improved productivity, motivation, and morale. A poor employee experience is frustrating for your workplace, impacting efficiency and ROI.

Employees are at the heart of your business and in 2022 they will continue to search for flexibility which promotes a healthier work-life balance. According to research conducted by Harvard Business Review, 76% of knowledge workers believe employees are more likely to prioritize lifestyle rather than proximity to their job. Additionally, the findings also signified that employees wish to be known for the value they bring to a role rather than their overall output.

In 2022, the employee experience will continue to be at the forefront of your workplace strategy. Read on to discover what the future workplace experience will look like, and the aspects to include in your workplace experience strategy to ensure your business is making the right investments.

How has the employee experience at work changed since the start of the pandemic?

As hybrid working dominated the workplace during 2021, businesses made increased investments in digitization and innovative technologies. Increased virtual collaboration was a defining outcome of the pandemic. Teams needed to be able to maintain communication, and technology was a driving force in enabling that.

62% of businesses stated that meetings increased since the beginning of the pandemic. Tools like Zoom, Skype, and Google Meet allowed employees to stay connected to each other in real-time, enhancing productivity. Centralized communication was also possible through group chat platforms, such as Asana, in addition to document sharing tools and cloud-based collaborative platforms like Google Docs.

For those who followed a hybrid working path, finding a home-life balance proved challenging. Schools closed, which meant parents and caregivers often had to juggle childcare or other family demands with working from home. A lack of space also meant that some employees had to negotiate personal spaces, transforming them into professional areas.

Even with these additional stressors, flexible work proved favorable for most employees. According to a survey from FlexJobs of over 4,000 hybrid employees, 73% of people said that their work-life balance improved, especially as employees could spend more time with their families and pets.

As employees return to the office and for most, on a hybrid work schedule, the work-life balance for employees has gained greater focus than ever before. 73% of employees want continued autonomy through hybrid and flexible work.

Alongside improving work-life balance, the pandemic has also shone a light on the mental wellbeing of employees. Empowering employees with learning and development resources provides a great sense of self-worth. Growth opportunities create purpose, elevating the employee experience at work.

In 2022 and beyond, employees will be searching for richer, more fulfilling experiences to help them develop professionally and personally. Now, since employees can work from anywhere, what’s attracting them into the office? Employees want social experiences, educational opportunities, featured speakers, and places to hold important meetings — employee experiences that can be greatly impacted by the spaces and collaboration tools available.

The Business Impact of the Employee Experience

Employee experience is more than simply enriching the office environment for the workforce. A positive employee experience is beneficial for business growth. When businesses focus on workplace experience, their performance and ROI tends to grow. Employee experience influences employee engagement. Employees who are highly engaged in their job have enhanced productivity and are more likely to have fewer sick days.

An optimal work environment, from comfort to wellbeing to culture, can improve creativity and innovation and reduce turnover — goals businesses strive to achieve.

With a positive work culture, happy employees are likely to have better relationships with other members of staff, customers, and partners. As their job satisfaction increases, they’ll produce a higher quality of work. If an employee is producing their best work, they’ll receive positive appraisals from leaders, making them more likely to stay in their current role, and recruit others to work for the organization.

Skilled employees are in high demand. Without a positive employee experience and work environment, they’re more likely to look elsewhere. It’s essential for leaders to create the very best employee experience possible – both for job satisfaction and for business performance.

Here’s how to monitor and improve the employee experience at work.