VMware Inc, shared results of a global survey of employees, human resources (HR) professionals, and information technology (IT) decision makers. The survey reviewed attitudes across industries and geographies on the digital employee experience. Findings of the Digital Employee Experience survey show correlation between enabling employees with a positive digital experience (i.e., device choice/flexibility, seamless access to apps, remote work capabilities) and an organisation’s competitive position, revenue growth and employee sentiment.
VMware provides networking, security and digital workspace solutions. “Too often, the conversation about digital transformation focuses on the technology. It often leaves out a key ingredient to a winning strategy – attracting and retaining the best talent. To compete for the best talent, companies are prioritising employee experience, which encompasses technology, workstyle and culture,” said Shankar Iyer, senior vice president and general manager, End User Computing, VMware.
“Leaders committed to improving employee experience are adopting the digital workspace which fuels modern digital experiences. Our survey revealed this is being critically important to current and prospective employees. As well as improving other key business outcomes,” Iver added.
Delivering on digital employee experience
Employees’ ability to access the apps and information they need, from whatever device or location they choose, affects their ability to effectively plan, collaborate and execute. Results from the VMware survey confirmed the importance of providing employees with a seamless digital experience. Employee access to these resources positively impacts business outcomes including rate of growth, employee sentiment and talent recruitment.
Today’s leading companies are prioritising their employees’ digital experience. In fact, employees who rate their organisation more competitively, as a “leader” or “pioneer”, are significantly more likely to have a good digital employee experience at work, compared to those who rank their organisation as a “follower.” Employees at a “leading” or “pioneering” company are more likely to:
- Be able to find and install the right app for any new task/process at work. (76% of employees at leader/pioneer organisations vs. 53% of employees at follower organisations)
- Have the freedom to work from their personally-owned device (62% vs. 51%, respectively).
- Have the ability to work from anywhere as easily as from in the office (70% vs. 51%, respectively).
- Have greater choice when it comes to selecting devices for work purposes. Nearly 61% of employees at a leader/pioneer organisation report being able to choose between using Android or iOS for work. In contrast, only 46% of respondents at follower organisations can do so.
Happy employees – faster revenue growth
Eighty percent of employees at companies experiencing high growth can find, install the right app for new task/process at work. This is compared to 42% of employees at companies that are underperforming or not growing.
Delivering a better digital employee experience also plays a role in workforce sentiment. Respondents whose organisation gives them the ability to work from anywhere are significantly proud of their organisation. This compared to respondents whose company does not enable the freedom to work from anywhere (71% compared to 27% respectively). They are also more likely to claim their organisation has a progressive culture (71% vs. 28%). Recognised it, as one of the top places to work (70% vs. 29%) and provide good work-life-balance (69% vs. 30%). In addition, employees were far more likely to recommend their organisation (net promoter score) if they work at a company that provides a great digital employee experience.
Finally, when it comes to attracting new talent, digital experience is something candidates are also noting. Seventy-three percent of respondents agree that the flexibility of tools (e.g., technology, apps and devices) that they might need to use for work would influence their decision to apply or accept a position at a company.
Mind the gap
Approaching all (95%) of IT decision maker respondents claim that IT provides employees with the digital tools they need in order to be successful in their job. However, nearly half of employee respondents (42%) said they do not have the digital tools they need. And, nearly two-thirds of employees (64%) do not feel they have a voice when it comes to which digital technologies they use at work; whereas 83% of IT decision maker respondents said employees do have a say in this.
Although delivery perceptions differ, both IT and employee respondents do agree on this — digital employee experience projects should be a top priority for their organisations. In fact, 87% of IT respondents agree with that statement compared to 78% of employee respondents.
Enterprise Times: What this means for business?
The VMware study revealed another interesting gap that businesses will want to note. The report asked who is ultimately responsible for the overall employee experience? IT decision makers most often identified the Chief Information Officer. HR decision makers most often identified the Chief HR Officer, and employees most often identified the Chief Executive Officer.
Despite differences in perception of who is accountable for digital employee experience, nearly all respondents (89%) believe that HR and IT could work better together to improve the digital experience of employees.
It is often the case that digital transformation projects focus on hardware, software, applications and technology. Often the most important component needed to support change is forgotten or missing – people. The report confirms that businesses that provide a positive digital employee experience are likely to attract and retain talented people. Furthermore, it will be those engaged people who will support and push transformational changes needed by businesses.