It's no secret that employees are an organization's most valuable asset. So it follows that during a period when change truly has been the only constant, providing employees with a positive employee experience—and being able to flex to support shifting needs—has been critical. Technology plays an important role in supporting this, helping organizations understand their employees' concerns and feedback, more deeply analyze their sentiment, and take meaningful action in response.
In March, Workday completed its acquisition of Peakon, an intelligent listening platform that converts feedback into actionable insights. Today, we’re checking in with David Somers, Workday’s group general manager of product for the office of the CHRO, and Phil Chambers, Peakon co-founder and now Workday’s general manager for Peakon, to hear about Peakon’s new name and our vision for it, and to learn more about why employee listening is so critical for organizations.
To set the stage for our readers, let’s start with an overview of the product and what’s happened since the acquisition closed in March.
Somers: To start with, we have a new name: Workday Peakon Employee Voice, which reflects both brands and immediately tells people what the product does.
Chambers: Workday Peakon Employee Voice is a platform that enables intelligent listening at scale by using machine learning to collect and analyze confidential feedback from employees in real time. Put simply, it lets organizations continuously collect employee feedback and provides a way to turn that feedback into dialog and action.
The employee voice was always important, and it’s well known that engaged employees are not only happier but also more productive. The pandemic accelerated the need to make employees a first-class stakeholder in their own engagement, which is exactly what Workday Peakon Employee Voice does. It turns insights about topics such as engagement, diversity and inclusion, and health and wellness into action through conversations, personal dashboards, team collaboration, and contextual learning resources.
Somers: In this time of massive digital transformation, intelligent listening enables you to get a continuous view of what's going on with your employees, and that's a superpower for an organization. It helps you get ahead of challenges by identifying them early so you can reduce the risk they may create. It can also help you reduce attrition risks and attract new talent during this time of “Great Resignation.” You can truly listen to your employees, hear what they're saying, benchmark that information, and respond in real time. It's more important than ever.
Chambers: On the growth side of the equation, we’ve seen a dramatic acceleration of Peakon’s business. It's an impressive increase given that we’re a new business that’s getting bigger and growing faster, and reinforces how important the voice of the employee is to organizations. We're also grateful for the positive response from our existing customers—it's always fantastic to be able to deliver even more value to our customers.
How are the vision and core values at Workday and Peakon aligned?
Somers: Cultural alignment is critical, and when we mapped Peakon’s values against Workday's, there was very close alignment. When we look at any acquisition, the company can have the best technology in the world, but if the cultural synergy isn't there, we just wouldn't do it.