Empowering cross-functional IT teams to optimize the employee experience
The inevitable change of industry norms has inspired a variety of new attitudes, methodologies, and practices that dictate how successful an enterprise may or may not be. For example, IT leaders, typically tasked with managing technology infrastructure, have grown to become integral to empowering employee performance, company culture, and business success.
Lisa Capra, product marketing manager at LumApps, joined KMWorld’s webinar, “Connecting the Dots: The Crucial Role of IT Leaders in Employee Performance,” to examine how IT leaders can effectively manifest their newfound responsibilities in regards to employee experience (EX)—which ultimately boils down to embracing the right tools and strategies for optimal business success.
Capra started off the conversation by defining employee experience, explaining that it “encompasses all aspects of the employee’s relationship with their organization,” and further “includes work environment, relationships with colleagues, workplace culture, professional development, workflow tools, and ease of work.”
Without a fully fleshed-out, productive employee experience, positive business outcomes falter, materializing as real financial loss throughout an enterprise; according to Capra, the EX should be equally as delightful, orchestrated, personalized, measurable, engaging, and critical as the customer experience (CX).
According to a statistic from VitalSmarts, in recent years, more than 50% of employees have experienced a reduction or restructuring of teams, representing a wide-spread instability among enterprise culture. As Capra explained, this may not be our fault, but it will certainly be our problem.
As IT roles have changed in their primary tasks—shifting from sole infrastructure technology management to driving business success through EX and collaborating with human resources and internal comms teams—Capra noted that this cross-functionality arising in various enterprise departments will be a key determiner in which enterprises are innovating, and which are regressing.
Technology plays a critical role in the productivity of the employee—a significant reason why IT leaders are now tasked with EX operations. Appropriate and effective tools and technologies are an absolute requirement for empowering a productive employee environment; similarly, streamlined services and ease-of-use increase employee happiness and engagement.
Capra emphasized the ways CIOs, CHROs, and Internal Comms can work together to propel positive EX. Importantly, Capra explained that EX is not the sole responsibility of any one department or role; instead, EX operations represent an intersection of a myriad of skills and personas that collaborate in driving engaging, streamlined, and productive EX.
Selecting new tools and software should always be done with the employee experience in mind, Capra argued. After all, the right technology enables the employee to work smarter, as easy access and autonomy should be critical components to look out for when adopting new services.
An employee headquarters—such as LumApps’ Employee Experience Platform—can effectively support the endeavor toward embracing a cross-functional, employee-centered enterprise. An employee headquarters should:
- Provide the right information across applications.
- Present information all in one place.
- Guide employees.
- Support deskless, remote, and hybrid workers.
- Prioritize mobile accessibility for apps and communication tools.
- Provide strong security without sacrificing productivity or collaboration.
Capra delved further into the capabilities that an EX platform can consist of to advance the efforts of an employee-centric enterprise. To name a few examples, an EX platform can aid IT teams in creating dedicated support portals for handling tickets, routing information, and reducing incoming requests from co-workers; can create resource centers with strong search functions; can provide an intuitive CMS; offer multi-language support; and provide employees with a customizable homepage for their work-critical apps, favorite pages, and useful links.
The foundational message Capra delivered to the webinar’s viewers is that the employee experience is just as crucial as the customer experience, as both entities should empower ease-of-use, productivity, and efficiency within a secure environment. EX is a cross-functional task, Capra highlighted; the employee experience is everyone’s business, including IT, HR, and Internal Comms. Capra concluded by explaining that the employee experience should be front-of-mind when selecting tools and software, where, ideally, the selected solutions provide a digital headquarters capable of accommodating a variety of worker environments, providing them with critical, streamlined, and engaging functions.
For an in-depth discussion of IT leaders’ roles in EX, you can view an archived version of the webinar here.