Technology to Modernize and Improve the Employee Experience at Every Stage

October 15, 2020

Improve the employee lifecycle and create connections at every stage with modern, integrated solutions.

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When it comes to the expectations of today’s workers, not much looks the same as it did a decade or two ago. From ensuring your website and job postings represent your company well, to providing easy-to-use employee-facing applications for time tracking, pay stubs, learning, and more, your organization stands to gain a lot by ensuring every stage of your employee lifecycle meets and even exceeds expectations.

“Young workers today find their jobs online, and they interview for new positions on a regular basis throughout their career,” writes Josh Bersin. “Millennials change jobs and companies every two to three years, and they expect to learn and progress continuously.”

So how can organizations accommodate this new and growing list of demands? Companies that fare the best are those that leverage HR technology to develop a consumer-driven approach to their employee lifecycles, especially with today’s tech-savvy, consumer-oriented Millennials and Gen Z workers.

Below we’ll take a look at the different stages of the modern employee lifecycle, and how today’s technology can help you improve employee engagement throughout each.

1. Technology to Attract and Entice New Talent

Recruitment is all about seeking out top candidates to fill a vacant role in your company. While the basics of recruiting are usually the same — find great prospects and get them into your organization quickly — not all recruiting strategies are created equal. In fact, when it comes to filling those vacancies with the best employees, there are a few key areas where top companies can leverage technology to improve the candidate experience.

Invest in your employer brand and candidate communication.

There are mountains of evidence in favor of making sure your recruiting process is designed well, including a 70% boost in quality of hire. So how can you make sure your employee experience isn’t missing the mark?

You can start by ensuring the front line of touchpoints — from basics like your website and email to newer modes of communication like text and video — do the best possible job showcasing your employer brand. After all, it’s one of the primary places candidates glean information about your organization. 

“Candidates are looking at your website — more than half (53%) say it’s their first stop when applying for a job,” writes Samantha McLaren of LinkedIn’s talent blog. “And, 27% want to learn about your company culture when they visit the site, so all those pictures of office shenanigans on your phone can finally be put to good use.”

Not only that, but video is one of the quickest, most effective (and least expensive) ways to capture candidates’ attention, seize their imagination, and attract interest. You can use video to introduce candidates to your company culture, describe open positions, and share your stories.

Keep things moving.

As many as 39% of candidates will start pursuing other roles if they feel your recruiting process is too slow, according to a Robert Half survey. The same survey showed that 23% of applicants lose interest if they don’t hear from you within a week after the initial interview, and another 46% lose interest if there’s no update or communication one to two weeks after the interview.

Not only that, but a sub-par recruiting experience can affect your bottom line. A Careerbuilder survey revealed that 58% of candidates are less likely to patronize a company that did not respond to their application, and a full 69% of candidates will be less likely to buy after a bad interview experience.

So how can you avoid the pitfalls of a gummed-up recruiting process? Platforms like Paylocity give you access to a proprietary suite of tools to help streamline the process. Our customized workflows, including new Premium Video communication tools, allowing you to communicate easily with stakeholders regarding candidates and quickly extend the offer when you settle on the right fit.

Diversify online touchpoints and meet candidates where they are.

While it would be nice if there were a single job portal where all the “unicorns” gathered, the truth is that most candidates interact with several different job boards when looking for a job. In fact, one survey revealed that respondents reported using an average of 7.6 job sites during their job search. What’s more, manually posting your opening to each site isn’t the best use of anyone’s time.

Paylocity’s software makes it easy for you to meet candidates where they are by automatically posting open positions on specific job portals that are relevant to your organization. Once you’ve determined the best places to post your opening, you can make your posts stand out with a video message that introduces the role, showcases your culture, and send status updates on the process via text message.

2. Automate and Enhance Onboarding with Self-Service Software

A critical part of the employee onboarding process is integrating the new hire into your company culture. Think: giving new team members the proper paperwork, looping them into shared documents and project management software, connecting them with company tools, and introducing them to their coworkers.

The onboarding process is your opportunity to immerse your new team member in your company’s culture and is critical for employee retention. In fact, a great employee onboarding experience can improve retention by 82% — yet 88% of employees think their employer did a poor job with the onboarding process when they were hired at their current company.

“In the most sophisticated companies, new employee onboarding is now a multi-month journey, with different types of developmental experiences along the way,” writes Josh Bersin.

So how can you cement your organization in the minds of that coveted 12% of employees who had a great onboarding experience?

Paylocity’s suite of onboarding tools is designed to make the process easier for you and more enjoyable for new employees. For instance, you can reach out and connect with employees before they even start working for you, sharing resources and communications that get them acquainted with who you are and how things work. Additionally, Paylocity’s technology allows you to quickly disseminate and gather tax forms, I-9 verifications, direct deposit info, and more, making data collection seamless. You can also use the Surveys tool to check in with new team members and keep a pulse on their experience so you can adjust as necessary based on real-time feedback.

3. Leverage Modern Solutions to Engage and Develop Employees

Employee development is the process of working with your employees on an individual basis to improve current skills — and learn new ones — to help support your organization’s mission and goals.

As Josh Bersin so aptly puts it, “The more you learn, the happier you become,” and the same is true for the workers in your company. For instance, employees who spend time learning at work are “47% less likely to be stressed, 39% more likely to feel productive and successful, 23% more ready to take on additional responsibilities, and 21% more likely to feel confident and happy.”

Clearly, today’s employees don’t just like development — they demand it if they’re going to spend a significant amount of time with your organization. Meeting these needs requires the strategic application of today’s technology to grow and engage talent, and deliver on employees’ evolving expectations.

A learning management system (LMS) allows you to easily assign courses tailored to training on new skills, policies, products, and more. The advantage? This solution appeals widely to employees, including the 58% of employees who prefer to learn at a pace they set themselves, and the 49% of employees who prefer to learn at the point of need.

However, employees don’t simply want to be set loose in a video library. Today’s workers crave direction from their leaders, with 56% saying they would spend more time learning if their manager directed them to complete a specific course in order to gain or improve their skills. Managers can leverage the tailored solutions of Paylocity’s LMS through assigning custom training courses based on an employee’s unique challenges and areas of focus — then use people analytics dashboards to track their progress.

Technology is also essential in facilitating employee engagement. Workforce engagement tools, like Community, empower employees to collaborate, share their learnings, and co-create a culture of transparency and connection. Employees can connect with team members anywhere in the country around specific projects, interests, and initiatives. They can also give each other shoutouts and instantly get access to important company news and updates.

Finally, employee surveys can be used to gauge employee satisfaction around your company’s learning and development initiatives, so you get a clear picture of which programs are succeeding and which ones need additional work.

You can expand on the value each of these tools provides by digging into the data to evaluate usage and response from your workforce to keep improving efficiency and effectiveness. Building on your learnings, each effort feeds into a broader strategy that can improve engagement, retention, and ultimately profitability.

4. Streamline Workforce Management with Online Dashboards

Workforce management involves the processes and strategies used to maximize employee productivity and ensure the right resources are in the right place (and in the hands of the right employees) at the right time.

However, workforce management means so much more than checking the right boxes for payroll and scheduling. Today’s workforce management means empowering employees to handle their day-to-day needs like clocking in and out, accessing their payment information, and reducing the manual work involved in time tracking and scheduling.

That sounds like a lot, but Paylocity’s technology enables organizations to streamline the processes involved in this stage of the employee lifecycle, taking them from cumbersome and time-consuming, to efficient, effective, and easy for workers to interact with.

Automation makes it easy to cut down on administrative labor hours and get insights on time and attendance, all while reducing compliance risk. What would have been a stack of papers just a few years ago has now been translated into an easy-to-use electronic dashboard, where you can automatically track, create and view schedules, or view and manage an audit trail to identify tardiness, absenteeism, or extended break and meal periods over a set period of time.

What’s more, employee-facing applications, including clocking in and out, accessing pay stubs, and more are all mobile-friendly, enabling employees to access the information and even a portion of earned wages they need whenever and wherever they want.

5. Meaningful Performance Management with Centralized Feedback

Performance management is the process of using continuous communication and feedback between managers and workers to ensure the employee has what they need to achieve organizational objectives.

However, history and research have shown that employees want and need far more interaction with their leaders than the standard annual review to stay motivated and reach their goals. In fact, only 20% of employees feel the way their performance is managed motivates them to do outstanding work.

To employees, continuous performance management is a signal that their managers — and their organizations — value them. This is where modern performance management practices that incorporate the latest technology can help your organization get a leg up.

Evaluations don’t have to be limited to annual or bi-annual reviews (nor should they be). Paylocity’s tools enable you to facilitate ongoing, goal-centric conversations with employees and empower them to self-appraise their performance while co-creating performance objectives with their managers. Journals offer employees a space for self-evaluations and encourages continual check-ins on professional goals. Impressions, the peer-to-peer recognition functionality, provides an easy and fun way for positive feedback amongst coworkers in way that engages and highlights accomplishments. And when it is time for a formal review, all feedback from peers and managers are centralized in one location so important notes and milestones aren’t lost.

Modern Workforces Deserve Modern Solutions

 As Josh Bersin so aptly puts it, “Each employee embarks on a unique journey when she joins an organization. Employee journeys will have twists, turns, detours, and maybe even a few bumps, but they will all be full of moments that matter.” 

By choosing HR and payroll technology that improves the employee experience through forward-thinking approaches at every stage of the employee lifecycle, you’re not just ensuring better performance for your workforce, you’re equipping your organization with the tools it needs to create these “moments that matter” and ultimately, stay ahead of the competition.

 Learn more about how an integrated HR and payroll solution can enhance every stage of the employee lifecycle enabling improved communication, collaboration, efficiency, and accuracy.

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