How You’re Repelling Your Employees (and you don’t even know it!) - bettHR

Every year, HR pushes to be more digital – to enhance our employee’s experience with our various programs, products and offerings. What was once done manually (and painfully!), has mostly moved to an online interactive experience.

But with an increased focused on delivering better benefits, better HRIS systems, better payroll, and overall better HR (ahem, bettHR) – we find ourselves in an interesting conundrum: we’ve created a choppy, discombobulated and confusing HR experience.

How You’re Repelling Your Employees (and you don’t even know it!)

We have so many vendors – each with their own rules, standards, can and can’t do’s… without little coordination. We’ve created a HUGE gap – that will negate all of the upside of the investments you’ve made on HR tech.
We have confused our #employees beyond anything they’ve ever felt before WHILE they care more about the benefits you offer AND they have lost faith/feel disconnected from #HR. #employeeexperience Click To Tweet

We have confused our employees beyond anything they’ve ever felt before WHILE they care more about the benefits you offer AND they have lost faith/feel disconnected from HR.

That, my friends, is a big rock issue. One that will repel your key talent employees – and will have a ripple effect when trying to attract top talent.

The worst part is, you are feeling the pain of this issue – but not quite certain it’s one of your biggest problems. (Hint: it is!).

Perhaps you have more calls to your HR call center or to your HR business partners – even though the information is available online somewhere.

Or maybe you have increased ERISA cases of employees who missed the enrollment deadline, didn’t understand the plan they enrolled in, or couldn’t find critical details.

You think you need to invest in tactical training (i.e., here are the steps to enroll in benefits; here are the steps by screenshot, how to open a requisition; here are the steps to update your home address) – even though external technology (think: Amazon), doesn’t provide us with the same tactical training options.

It can also show up as candidates asking a ton of questions about their offer – benefits/total rewards in particular – and you’re not sure how to answer, or where to send them.

And for you, it can show up in a few different ways: constantly trying to coordinate vendors and asking for them to update their product (either functionally or the look and feel); spending too much time being a “traffic director” – sending people to resources that are accessible and available to them; or feeling burned out with a “why does it even matter” attitude, when starting to plan for big projects – especially annual enrollment.

So, how can you fix it?

It starts with a high-level review and audit of your various HR touch-points and vendors. Who do you and your employees go to for what actions? Is there one place to learn about information and another place to take action? Or is it the same place?

Can employees find detailed information easily and… on their cell phones? When they’re at home with their spouse? Or, do they have to be logged in and behind the VPN to get the details and understand how things work?

List out the various programs and vendors – and here’s an expert tip: take a screenshot of the platform/interface.

Knowing the list of programs/vendors is critically important, but with the added audit of a screenshot of each, you can instantly see how variable the experience is for your employee. It is mind-boggling!

Here’s an example (logos have been blurred to protect the guilty parties):

This is a sample of the first point of access (log-in screens) for four vendors that are managed by the Total Rewards group – and as you can see, they each have a completely different look and feel.

If you are an employee, what would you think?

Is this a cohesive experience? Would you feel like HR has it together? Would you know, instinctively, where to go for what? How to access/process/take action for HR-related things?

Critical thing to remember: to our employees, HR is one big department. They don’t see the different groups or areas of responsibility AND they don’t see our tools and tech as different solutions.

When you map out the various vendors and see them, you’ll understand why employees have been frozen into inaction or jump directly to asking questions.

Our “self-service” model, which will become more and more self-service on the back-end thanks to AI over time, relies on high-touch conversations being removed from the process.

But how can we ever expect our employees to move with us there – even if we force them to, without considering why they need to reach out?

They are actively seeking a high-touch solution because they care deeply about the things we, in HR, want them to care about – and they want to get it right.

For most HR things, there is no room for error – and they are so concerned with bumbling the action or activity needed, and we haven’t shown them a consistent or expected process, look, feel, and outcome – so they reach out.
Critical thing to remember: to our #employees, #HR is one big department. They don’t see the different groups or areas of responsibility AND they don’t see our tools and tech as different solutions. Click To Tweet

The quick fix

Know that having your vendors update their websites and tech to be consistent in look and feel will take time – and may not even be feasible. And that’s definitely not a quick fix.

But what can you do today, to stop repelling your employees away from HR and start delivering a better experience?

Start with what you can influence – your employees point of entry.

How can your employees be welcomed into the various HR vendors, information, solutions, and actions – in a way that you can control, looks and feels like your HR brand, and provides one experience to HR – from which others can jump off from?

The easiest solution to implement is a microsite – your HR website that acts as an information hub for your biggest HR programs – that connects your employees with the available resources when they are ready to take action.
The easiest solution to implement is a microsite – your information hub for your biggest #HR programs – that connects your employees with the available resources when they are ready to take action. #employeeexperience Click To Tweet

Removing all of the hunting and pecking and detail finding, to your controlled environment – minimizing the multiple website experiences until they need to do something specific (like enroll or update their address).

The most effective microsites are external, but if your company isn’t quite ready to create one that resides outside of firewall, think about your intranet or a SharePoint site of entry.  Note: these aren’t likely the best long-term solutions in general, but they are good bridge solutions until you’re ready for an external site or until you find the magical wand and get all your vendors on board!

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