How to Create a Positive Employee Experience

When we talk about the employee experience, we are referring to how employees feel about their job throughout the stages of being with a particular company. A positive employee experience can be witnessed in the day to day lives of the employees. It can also be experienced at interviewing, onboarding and up till the point they exit the company.

A positive employee experience results in lower absenteeism rates, improved collaboration, increased employee engagement as well as improved productivity and so much more.

In this article we discuss how to create a positive employee experience across the following stages:

  •  Interviewing
  •  Onboarding
  • During employees’ tenure at the company
  • When they are exiting the company

How to create a positive employee experience at the interview stage

The interview stage is the shortest and one of the most stressful stages in the employee experience. It is also the first interaction a potential hire will have with key people in the company. How a candidate perceives the company at this stage can inform their experience if they are hired and even lead them to turn down a job for an offer at a more welcoming company. To create a positive employee experience, do the following:

Select the right interviewer

A company increases its chances of delivering a positive employee experience at this stage by selecting the right individuals to conduct the interview. This person shouldn’t only be a senior member in charge of making hiring decisions, they should also be a representative of the company culture.

In some workplaces, a member of the team the candidate may work with will be present at certain stages of the interview. They will be able to answer and ask questions specific to the candidate’s day to day life at the company.

Maintain good interview etiquette

In modern jobs, interviewers should be aware that they are not only interviewing a candidate for a job, the candidate is interviewing them too. Being on time, polite and cordial will make a step towards the candidate having an initial positive employee experience.

 Get back to candidates in time

This courtesy should extend even after the interview is over. Candidates are told how to behave after an interview; send an email thanking the interviewer for their time for instance. However, little is said about the interviewer’s post interview behaviour.

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If you are meant to get back to the candidate with a decision in a week, ensure to do that. In case of a delay, communicate about the delay and let them know when you will be able to revert.

How to create a positive employee experience during onboarding

Have an orientation process

The first days of a job can be challenging for employees. They will be trying to find their way around and figuring out how things work. Create a positive employee experience by dedicating the first days to orientation.

Before employees dive into their tasks, give them a chance to learn how to navigate the systems in the workplace. From there, give them tasks with clear instructions and timelines. All this helps to build their confidence and creates a positive employee experience.

Implement a buddy system

Research supports the fact that having a buddy system can have a positive impact on the employee experience. During orientation, pair your new employees with buddies to help them settle into the new workplace with ease.

With a buddy, a new hire has someone to turn to if they have a question, there’s someone to guide them in figuring out their role as well as the social aspects of the company. Here are some tips on implementing a buddy system in your organisation.

How to create a positive employee experience during the employees’ tenure

Ideally this will be the longest stage of the employee experience. What happens every day when they go into work will impact their wellbeing, productivity and retention. Create a positive experience by:

Supporting their development

Create policies that facilitate development of skills for your employees. No one should feel stuck in their career or feel like they have no future prospects.

Development can be carried out through general training and those targeted to specific individuals. While there are trainings you will feel are important for all employees to have, such as customer service training, talk to employees to find out what individuals want to learn.

Besides training, you can have a scholarship program, provide study leave, provide peer to peer mentoring as well as coaching from senior staff. Help employees make plans for their future and help them to get there.

Work on your values and live them

Company values are a good way to signal how employees will be treated. For example, if one of your company values is caring for your people, employees will know that they are an important part of the company.

After crafting values such as these, put them in action. This can be through your policies, culture and how everyone treats each other in the company.

Train managers and supervisors

A key part to a positive employee experience is the relationship that employees have with their managers. Enable your managers and supervisors to give employees the support they need by training them. Leadership training, training in communication skills as well as conflict resolution are just a few examples.

Positive employee in the workplace
Image: Pexels

How to create a positive employee experience when they are exiting the company

This isn’t the stage to throw in the towel. The employee experience is still important at this stage. With a proper exit, employees can reveal insights about the company that can help you improve. They can also become good ambassadors for your brand.

Let them feel heard

Whether the employee is changing positions and moving to another branch or leaving the job entirely, it is important that they feel heard. Let it be known that these meetings are important and employees will treat them as such.

Knowing that their feedback is going to be used to contribute to the betterment of the company can encourage employees who are leaving to open up.

Make them feel proud of their contributions

Every employee has contributed to the company in some way and this is a good time to point out how. Let them know how their work contributed to the company and thank them for their efforts. A message from the boss or other colleagues can round off the send-off.

In Summary

The employee experience is an ongoing thing. For management to get it right, they have to be deliberate and not reactive. Putting in place systems at every stage of the employee journey and evaluating those systems is important in creating a positive employee experience.

Gerald Ainomugisha

Gerald Ainomugisha

Gerald is a freelance writer with a pen that is keen for entrepreneurship, business and technology. When he isn't writing insightful articles on employee engagement and corporate culture, Gerald can be found writing for a number of media outlets.