- On December 26, 2023
- by: Rick Topping
- 6 minutes Read
As organizations seek ways to become more efficient, technology is often a big part of that equation. However, there is a massive assortment of applications aimed at supporting different business functions. Leaders seem eager to invest in them, with 95% of U.S. leaders in 2022 using at least one type of technology in their organization.
They believe that these tools will help their employees. The challenge is that employees don’t always have the same view.
A PWC report indicates that there’s a disconnect between decision-makers and employees when it comes to technology. While 90% of leaders feel they take the employee experience (EX) into consideration with new technology, only 53% of employees agree.
In this article, we look at the link between employee experience and technology, and how these gaps arise. We also discuss how organizations can leverage technology to improve employee experience, productivity, and profitability.
How Employees Experience Technology is Different
While decision-makers have a broad overview of their organization, they’re seldom exposed to the daily activities that employees undertake. When new technology is introduced, decision-makers have an idea of what it should do, but it’s your employees who have to work with it.
If the new technology completely changes how your employee works or there’s no training for it, employees are hardly in a position to tell management they made a poor decision. At most, they might be able to log feedback with the IT department or managed service provider to help them. The problem is that while the technical issues may be resolved in time, the damage to the employee experience is often overlooked.
When productivity declines or deadlines are missed due to problems with technology, employees are rarely let off the hook. Rather, they’re told to “figure it out” or “make it work” and that the technology is there to help them. This can leave employees frustrated and feeling undervalued.
It communicates that only results matter and that employees’ needs come secondary. Expecting employees to work with flawed resources is like telling a marathon runner to race without shoes. It’s possible, but unpleasant, and makes things harder than they should be.
This can be turned around if leaders take the time to understand what employees need from technology. In other words, where their tech gaps currently exist and what employees want to gain for new platforms. It’s worth making the effort to do so as the benefits derived by linking employee experience and technology can be far-reaching.
Link #1: Technology Can Boost Employee Well-being
A great deal of employee stress comes from juggling multiple tasks amid ever-changing timelines. Trying to keep track of everything can be overwhelming. Scheduling and project management tools can help employees become more organized and prompt them on priority tasks.
The benefit extends to managers, helping them identify areas where employees may need additional support. By tracking workload volumes, technology can also help identify which employees might be at risk of burnout.
These small prompts can make a big difference in the workplace because they communicate to employees that you care about their well-being as well as productivity.
Link #2: Better Employee Experience + Technology = Greater Productivity
Generating greater levels of productivity can be an uphill battle in any organization. Yet studies show that it comes down to just a handful of factors: Employee attitude, technology and resources, goals and objectives, leadership, and work environment.
While businesses have more direct control over the last four factors, employee attitude is largely influenced by their experiences at work. Employees that have positive experiences are more engaged and tend to be more productive. Part of this is feeling that they have what they need to do well at their job. In this, technology and resources have an important role to play.
For example, people generally don’t enjoy repetitive or administrative tasks, even though they’re often an essential part of work. Automation supports employees in these types of tasks to help them become more productive. An example is Microsoft Copilot – an AI driven assistant that works with Microsoft Apps such as Word, Excel, and Powerpoint to help employees become more effective.
When technology delivers what employees need, less time is spent troubleshooting and more time is spent focusing on work tasks. Employees become more engaged when they feel they’re making good progress and this in turn creates a better employee experience. Technology can be the catalyst for greater productivity.
Interested in how other Pittsburgh organizations are using tech to grow? Keep up with the key digital employee experience trends in our webinar!
Link #3: Technology Facilitates Better Hybrid and Remote Work Experiences
For many employees, the ability to work in a hybrid or remote setting is a high priority. How well this is facilitated makes a big impact on employee experience. To help your organization, consider project management and communication tools like Microsoft Teams. They can facilitate teamwork regardless of location, and this is very appealing to employees.
Technologies such as multi-factor authentication (MFA) have also proven to be an important part of security protocols, enabling employees to work across multiple devices. Cloud technologies also make it easier to access and share company data securely without having to be in the office.
Without these technologies, remote work would not be possible. Considering how important remote working has become to the modern employee experience since the pandemic. Technology is the vital link that facilitates it.
“During the pandemic, we did a few brand new system implementations. We connected them between two new systems, a loan processing system, and a financial system of record. It made the back-of-the-house workflow seamless. Our clients got a normal, one-entry experience that looked effortless. We had to really focus on ourselves first in order to provide a better experience.”
- Jennifer Wilhem, Chief Operating Officer at the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh
A Quality Digital Employee Experience is a Winning Factor
Creating good employee experiences is a win-win situation. Your employees will feel valued, understood, and that they have a voice. This makes them more engaged and productive. Also, they’re more likely to stay at your organization for longer.
For organizations, this retention means that employee expertise continues to deliver value, year after year. There are savings on hiring and onboarding new people and it becomes possible to build stronger teams. This in turn can lead to greater levels of profitability.
All these advantages indicate a strong case for focussing on improving employee experience. Technology exists to make it happen, and if you need help understanding how it can work for you, Ceeva has more than 30 years of experience serving local organizations.
Find out more about our Pittsburgh IT services and how digital tools can be used to enhance your employee experience.
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