Estimated reading time: 3 minutes
I saw an interesting article on Human Resource Executive online titled “2 big tasks coming to HR in the next decade”. It’s a good read that focuses on a couple of issues organizations are facing right now – the candidate and employee experience. As I was reading the article, it reminded me of a few things that organizations and HR departments need to remember as they’re thinking about creating a candidate and employee experience.
This article tended to focus on post-pandemic strategies. While I appreciate that, I also believe it’s time to realize that many of the candidate and employee experience challenges we are dealing with now are the same ones we were dealing with pre-pandemic. Don’t get me wrong, the pandemic has created change in our personal and professional lives. But not all the challenges we’re experiencing from a talent perspective are directly related to the pandemic. They’ve been brewing for a while. Maybe even a long while!
Back to the article. One of the points the article made was about the need to redesign work. I totally agree with this. I’ve written before about how HR professionals should consider themselves the architects of work and as such, they should always be making sure that the work fits the needs of the organization as well as the needs of the employee.
But the point I want to make here is that redesigning work isn’t a pandemic thing. Or even a post-pandemic thing. Organizations and HR departments should be regularly evaluating work and redesigning it as needs change. Redesigning work should be an ongoing thing and should be a regular conversation within workforce and staffing planning.
The second big takeaway from the article was that organizations need to understand and react to the market. Companies do this now in terms of what consumers want and they need to do it for what candidates and employees want. I like to think of this as the employee value proposition (EVP). It’s what an employee gets for working at a particular organization.
Does an organization have to pay the highest and offer the most benefits? No, they don’t. But they do need to put together the right mix of pay, benefits, learning opportunities, and workplace culture that will attract, engage, and retain employees.
Again, neither of these points are pandemic related. We were having these talent conversations before then. Or at least, we should have been having those conversations all along. It’s time to start having regular discussions in the organization about talent.
- What kind of candidate experience do we want to offer?
- What’s our employee value proposition? How are we communicating it to candidates and employees?
- If candidates are turning down our offers, why? Is there something we can address?
- Is our EVP internally fair and externally competitive? If not, what can we do to make it that way?
- Do current employees know the EVP, like the EVP, and use components of the EVP? If not, are there changes we need to make?
I’m not trying to minimize the pandemic. Many people have suffered, and lost people close to them. It’s not over yet and we still have much to do. But if organizations want to hire and retain the best employees – and I believe they do – then these should be regular talent conversations that happen in the organization. Not just pandemic conversations. They can’t be pushed off.
Talent conversations are just as important as conversations about business and strategy. Because it’s the organization’s talent that makes the business and strategy happen.
Image captured by Sharlyn Lauby while exploring the streets of Las Vegas, NV16