Employee Experience industry useful reports – October 2023
Making the case for the office by Ipsos Karian and Box
What is especially good about this report is that, as well as the data, it poses thoughts and questions for employers.
- The report asks: What happens to those at the start of their career when older employees stay at home? - It's generally accepted that the majority of people learn better in-person, so more junior colleagues are not only missing out on technical learning but also cultural learning.
- Only 22% of respondents that are full-time office workers want to spend five days or more at their employer’s location - The working from home genie is obviously out of the bottle and once offered (during Covid) could feel like a punishment if now taken away.
- Having team 'anchor days' can reduce the need for office space and therefore costs - But as the report suggests, it limits the opportunities to meet others and many tasks are project based with people from other areas.
- People who are in the office more regularly report they're more likely to have career conversations and have a quicker response time - As the old Woody Allen phrase goes "80% of success is showing up". In theory with digital tools this shouldn't be the case, but perhaps it's human nature to favour 'in-person'?
- Employees who work remotely are less likely to say they feel under constant strain at work - Is this because those in 'line of sight' are asked to do more?
- Since the dawn of work, bosses have wanted to 'see' their employees working, so it's no wonder that there is the call to come back to the office full-time.
In some quarters, this is a battle of 'what's in it for me?' Organisations think productivity and performance improves if employees are in the office; employees value savings in time and costs met by working from home. One question which is seldom asked (which this report highlights) is: 'what's in it for them?' The 'them' being colleagues - but this should also refer to customers.
So, discussions around this topic and solutions thereafter should be framed around: the organisation, the employee, our colleagues, our customers. Just because it suits you - does it suit them?!
AI and the future of internal communication
This report from the Institute of Internal Communication gives a good summary of the history of AI and then discusses what it means for internal communicators.
- AI isn't new - it's been around since the 1950s and has been widely used for things like translation services for decades
- Chat GPT although useful should come with a warning that 'Naturally, the internet contains as much opinion as it does fact.' - so, don't believe everything it returns
- Chat GPT has been reported as having fabricated academic sources - perhaps it should become a politician?
- McKinsey estimates generative AI could add between $2.6 and $4.4 trillion annually to the global economy - but surely this is replacing something else which would contribute to the economy?
Certainly, in the short-to-mid-term, AI should be able to free up more time for human interaction by speeding up some mundane tasks. Who knows what the long-term implications for jobs will be, though.
Bias should be of immediate concern. We've seen with US elections that big tech has biased their search algorithms towards one party so surely, at least, big tech will bias towards what's best for them?
The EX Report
The EX Space and The People Experience Hub have teamed up on this report into EX.
- 42% of respondents have an EX team of 2-4 people - this is higher than expected... although you really don't need many people to get going with your EX efforts
- 56% see line manager capability as a challenge - seeing as they're responsible for around 90% of an employee's EX this is a serious area for development!
- 44% see securing resources/budget as a challenge - which is why we created the EXO ROI Calculator
- Only 24% of respondents are mapping experiences - this is at the heart of EX, so it’s odd that this doesn’t score much higher
- 52% of respondents believe that their Senior Leaders buy into EX/EE as a key strategic driver - I don't think this is reflective of organisations as a whole (probably much lower), but encouraging for the organisations that the respondents work for
Buy-in from senior leaders, securing budgets and line management capability are three of the biggest challenges that this report highlights. The same could be said for any people team, sadly. If only more realised that EX x CX = BX2.
Link to report: https://marketing.pxhub.io/2023exreport#downloadhere