Build It, but Will They Come?

Lessons on creating a usable employee experience during service delivery transformation design, implementation, and post go-live.

by Michael Stephan, Michael Gretczko & Daniel Sundt

Implementation is tough. Companies often spend millions of dollars, invest hours of hard work, and do everything “by the book,” only to find that they don’t achieve the anticipated value.

Getting managers and employees to embrace self-service tools and to accept their new accountability is important to any HR service delivery transformation. This principle has stood the test of time as HR service delivery transformation has matured.

Despite the importance of this behavioral change, we find that few companies invest in the “employee experience” of self-service. There is an opportunity, regardless of where you are on your transformation journey, to employ tactics to create or improve the experience.

Collaborating with your provider to build a positive and integrated employee experience makes good business sense because it creates the opportunity for a
“win-win-win” situation—for your employees and managers, the company, and even your provider.

Plan Design
Defining a strategy for a usable employee experience during the design stage will pay significant dividends toward achieving the triple win. Consider the following:

• Employee Experience Strategy.
Define a strategy for how the employee experience will be created through the processes, the enabling technology, and the supporting operations environment.

Guiding Principles and Standards. Create employee experience-guiding principles and standards to define implementation. These principles can provide a benchmark and reference point by which requirements are interpreted and defined.

Implementation
Processes are designed, specifications are written, and the technology team is configuring the system. Is it too late to address the employee experience? No. Although the impact will likely be less than if you had defined the strategies and principles during design, there are still opportunities for the triple win.

Capabilities of the Technical Solutions. Developing a usable employee experience is an increasingly easier proposition with the latest generation of ERPs and point solutions. A more usable employee experience can be accomplished through straightforward configuration of the solution, rather than costly customization.

Transaction Screen Validation Workshops. As the solution is being configured, conduct transaction screen validation workshops to capture input about the usability of the employee experience. These workshops can provide the opportunity to show a representative design of the solution and the transaction flow, with the focus on field labels, button and link placement, and instructional text.

Post Go-Live

Now the solution is live, and calls are coming into the contact centers. Even with the solution live, opportunities exist to improve the employee experience.

Capture Feedback. Direct feedback from employees is an excellent way to identify issues and incremental changes that could improve the employee experience. Refining training materials, distributing targeted communications, and adjusting instructional text can all help to improve the experience.

Contact Center Cases. Analyzing call volumes and types will directly point out problematic areas of the implementation. Identify the transactions causing issues for employees, and place those transactional areas on the top of the list for redesign and enhancement.

Focusing on the employee experience can have significant benefits for the transformation. Consider the following takeaways:

• Investing in usability upfront can help reap long-term rewards. Don’t underestimate the criticality of employee adoption.
• Create a path of least resistance to the web channel. Employees will go to the “easiest” channel.
• Involve your customers early and often during design. To be usable, it must be focused on the user.

• Look to the “blue sky” for the most appropriate solution, but stay grounded in the “real world.” Investing in the employee experience can become expensive. The little things often make the most significant impact.

• Go for the win-win-win. When the “what’s in it for me” is clear to all stakeholders, the transformation is more likely to be sustainable, and the efficiency and effectiveness of the overall HR service delivery model is enhanced.