Employee Experience Roundtable | March 2022 🌟

Employee Experience Roundtable | March 2022 🌟

👉 Reframing the Office Mindset

TLDR: Remote first, and hybrid companies are rethinking how the in-office working environment is framed. There’s motivation to get employees back into the office, but on a timeline where they feel safe and ready. Ultimately, the employees' relationship with the office is becoming a magnet - welcoming employees back when there’s fun things to do and see, or team meetings and ‘on-sites’. 

  • For larger companies that have worked through opening new offices, this has drawn many employees back to work in-person - they want to experience the new space. 
  • A few companies have seen success promoting or sharing pictures post-event of some in-office initiatives to drive both engagement and motivate employees to work in-person should they want to a few days of the week. 
  • Common motivators to get employees back into the office are:
  • Providing food via daily breakfast and/or lunches
  • Getting back into in-person events such as happy hours, surprise giveaways and in-office treat days
  • Having executives and department heads come back into the office a few days out of the month (and letting employees know about it!)
  • The remote-first/hybrid approach has forced some companies to reframe the office mindset for employees. A few companies view workplace experience as a magnet by offering different perks that make it exciting to come to work as opposed to forcing employees to come.  
  • Another approach is thinking of remote employees as a fourth office and mimicking what is done in-office events wise within a remote setting.

👉 Managing Global High Growth Offices

TLDR: Teams all over the world are beginning to take event planning into their own hands. The key to supporting teams that want to create internal initiatives, but don’t fall under your department constantly, is supporting them through training, event guidance, templates, checklists, check-ins and any other wisdom you can share. This also lets you keep an eye on what global teams are planning for their local employees. Additionally, allows for a consistent experience and sets expectations for all employees. 

  • Consider setting up monthly meetings with the Experience Team and the local office coordinators at different global offices to talk through what’s top of mind, what is working event wise, what does different global policy roll out look like etc. This provides open communication between different country managers and allows for greater transparency and efficiency. 
  • If events are being hosted by teams that are not under your oversight as a people leader, consider taking the route of an Event Consultant. From this approach, your team would work with office managers or individual teams from global offices to support the creation and roll out of various office-specific events. 
  • This approach is done best if there is support from leadership to coordinate with global teams. 
  • This allows for your team to work with global teams and communicate often through monthly check-ins. During these meetings, individuals or teams that want to host events can drive the meeting and the people team is framed as the event experts here to support and ensure a successful event. 
  • Another option to make this approach successful is to bring these smaller teams an event template and allow them to run with it for their specific office. 
  • Overall, this allows for transparency and consistency for employees and sets expectations for how to discover programs and events. 
  • Should employees from global teams outside of your scope want to host events for their local office, consider creating a training session for these individuals that walks them through scoping out an event, logistics and planning, maximizing engagement and any other essentials your people team uses to put on successful events.

👉 Increasing Engagement in A-Sync Learning Programs

TLDR: Many mid-sized companies have been struggling to increase employee engagement with their async learning programs such as LinkedIn Learning or Udemy for business. A few ways to increase engagement are keeping learning courses centralized to decrease as many barriers as possible for employees. Spotlight active learners through Slack shoutouts and company-wide newsletters. Lastly, curate and surface new and popular learning content to employees on a regular cadence. 

  • If employees are enthusiastic about the tool, but fail to use it by diving into different learning programs, consider tying their participation to performance reviews and 1-on-1’s. Once a performance review is complete, give employees a ‘learning prescription’ depending on the areas of improvement and growth they have highlighted.  
  • For success in this approach, be sure to have managers follow up on these learning prescriptions during 1-on-1 sessions. 
  • Another way companies have been driving engagement with their async learning tools is clearly communicating out to the company their preferred method of learning - self-directed. This sets clear expectations that employees are in the driver's seat when seeking out learning opportunities. 
  • Employees becoming newly accustomed to asynchronous learning systems can feel overwhelmed by the choice of courses they can complete. If this is the case consider a few things:
  • First, keep things centralized. Ensure asynchronous learning tools can integrate with your organization's LMS so everything for employees is in one place. Additionally, make sure onboarding materials for some teams are separated from general learning materials and other catalog courses offered through these a-sync platforms. 
  • Second, acknowledge active engagement. Highlight the most active learning across the organization each month. Conduct a quick interview with them to  answer questions such as, what was your favorite course you’ve taken? What have you learned this month? How have you applied this new knowledge? How did you find the time to learn? What are you excited to learn next? Turn this brief interview into a quick spotlight that can be shared on Slack/MS Teams or in a company-wide newsletter to drive further engagement.
  • Third, if possible curate learning opportunities. A few mid-sized companies have found success in creating their own courses and supplementing their content with LinkedIn Learning courses. This allows training to stay visible and ensures content is updated and relevant for all employees. 
  • When spotlighting highly engaged learners to the rest of the company, aim to use this opportunity as a marketing tool to share content that is open to everyone. Consider surfacing content that builds general skills and abilities (such as strategic thinking, or empathy building) instead of hyper specific courses (such as C++ for developers).
  • Another way to build up engagement for a-sync learning programs is to create a learning channel in Slack/MS teams and share 5-6 new courses each month with all employees in the channel. When circulating these new courses, add a TLDR course summary and consider spotlighting an employee that recently completed one of the courses you plan to highlight. 
  • When building out a learning focused Slack/MS Teams channel, ensure your team stays on top of moderating the channel frequently. 
  • For specific onboarding cohorts, consider making a separate onboarding channel specifically for that cohort's onboarding and learning materials. Once that cohort is familiar with their roles try archiving the channel and rolling employees over into the larger learning channel where they can get updated information regarding courses at a regular cadence.
  • Certain LMS’s allow for the creation of private groups within the LMS that works as a closed and collaborative learning forum for a smaller sub-section of employees. For example, having a closed group for manager training where content related to leadership development is housed as opposed to putting these courses on the more public, company-wide forum.

👉 Metrics - Vanity Vs What Really Matters

TLDR: Leadership across different teams tends to care about quantitative data such as engagement, passing rates, completion rates etc. Although, some of the most important metrics for learning data can be qualitative. Analytics such as employee feedback and manager feedback based on employee performance is a great way to understand if internally generated content is impactful. The best way to compile a thorough picture of learner metrics is to take enough time to gather sufficient quantitative and qualitative data. Look to analytics such as feedback, logins, and engagement (this may look different for every company depending on the learning toolkit available to employees) to provide data-driven insights and better understand what makes content successful at your organization. 

  • For most companies, metrics such as employee engagement, feedback and ROI are becoming increasingly important, especially as different learning programs mature. 
  • Leadership for some companies value analytics such as engagement rates, passing rates and completion rates. 
  • If your team is experiencing low engagement rates, this may not necessarily mean employees do not like the content you are providing to them. Learner engagement does not always revolve around how many courses are launched, but rather how impactful these courses are for employees. 
  • When it comes to using an LMS for onboarding and different company-specific courses, a helpful metric to test if courses are effective is by taking feedback surveys every 30, 60 and 90 days. For onboarding specifically, feedback on course content should come from new employee cohorts on the 30 and 60 days marks. On the 90th day, feedback on learning should come from managers and should answer questions such as based on the courses completed by X employee throughout onboarding. Do you believe they have a deep understanding of their role? Are they ready to do their job with a high level of autonomy? Are they thinking critically? What else would you like to see from this employee?
  • This qualitative data at a regular cadency can help your team better understand what courses are successful and which need to be updated to maximize learner time and be more impactful.
  • A few companies have found success implementing this tiered feedback system within a smaller loop. Feedback from new cohorts of learners is sent back to L&D every 10, 30 and 90 days. This allows L&D to gather more data frequently and better communicate with other stakeholders about what new employees need to learn as they continue onboarding. 
  • Another insightful metric is logins. Employees that login to their LMS and browse content is proof that efforts to drive employees towards growth and learning opportunities are working.

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