According to the Accenture research piece, “Future of Work: Productive Anywhere,” 83% of workers across industries indicated they expect and want a hybrid work experience, where they spend anywhere between 25% to 75% of their time in the office. Reaffirming the trend, Workday’s Employee Expectations report revealed hybrid employees feel more engaged at work than their onsite counterparts. The shift is happening, but what should organisations be thinking of before they adopt new technologies to enable their workers to thrive in a hybrid work environment?
“The most important thing that I can stress about rolling out these capabilities—and attempting to engage the population within to raise satisfaction and productivity—is the concept of change management,” said Prett.
Prett also cautions employers against getting caught up in the excitement of the technology experience. She advises leaders to ensure that due diligence is done to train people on how to use these tools.
“I encourage anyone who's experimenting with these technologies to spend a little bit of time thinking about the change management aspects of rolling them out and make sure you get that right.”
The C-suite Imperative
The challenges and opportunities posed by the pandemic have inspired the C-suite to collaborate in new ways and build greater synergy in their agendas. CIOs and CHROs, for example, are now working closer than ever before to address many of the new “people imperatives” and considerations like remote work. Prett described her relationship as CIO with Ellyn Shook, CHRO at Accenture, and how that is shaping the future of work at the firm.
“Ellyn constantly challenges us to think about the next thing. Having a strong business sponsor like that for any domain, not just HR, is really important. These sponsors help challenge us and think about the outcomes of what the technology is meant to achieve and keep pushing the borders of how we can apply new technologies to achieve the same outcomes: to give our employees options or choices.”
Prett believes employees today have higher expectations from their employers and are more aware of what they want their overall employee experience to be. She highlighted the importance of the CIO and CHRO functions working closely to deliver an omni-channel experience with consistent levels of delight across all channels.
“In the old days, IT could dictate because there was one technology thread and you used it or you didn't. Today, there are so many choices and employees have such a natural understanding of how to be intuitive in these environments and what seamless experiences should look like.”
It’s Business, But Make it Personal
The mass exodus of workers has employers unnerved. Most didn’t see it coming. To stem the tide of the Great Resignation and truly delight their workers, employers must first understand their employees. Job satisfaction or a great compensation package are no longer the clinching factors for talent retention. Workers are looking for something more.