Employee Experience in Australia - what matters and what’s working
In early 2018, Maxxia together with Global, undertook pioneering research into Employee Experience (EX) in Australia. Fast forward six months to September 2018, and we’re sharing findings from qualitative and quantitative surveys, packed with insights from more than 600 HR professionals.
A high-profile HR issue for Australia
As a baseline ‘audit’ of the local EX landscape, the inaugural 2018 Employee Experience Report confirms that EX is striking a chord with Australian organisations. With an ageing population and the growing demand for employees who can innovate and perform at the demanding pace of a rapidly changing environment, Australia is staring down the barrel of a significant skills gap.
Employee experience presents a simple solution to this very complex people problem. So it’s no surprise to discover the vast majority of Australian organisations surveyed – almost 90% – are well aware of EX.
The EX element that matters most
Here in Australia and on the international stage, there is no universal definition for EX. It can vary as much from organisation to organisation, as it does from person to person. But as well as being on the same page with respect to EX awareness, Australian organisations are in agreement on the most critical contributor to positive EX.
The number one make-or-break EX element is the competence of leaders and managers. It’s the direct report relationship that really holds the key to how engaged an employee feels at work. So what we’re already seeing in response to the EX challenge is more organisations placing their focus on upskilling managers. Our report includes examples of how this is playing out, such as the ManageIn program introduced to support managers and instil cultural values at LinkedIn.
Simple steps to shift the dial for EX
In sifting through insights and learnings from the many real-world EX boosting initiatives gathered during our research, we’ve discovered that simple low-tech approaches to EX are just as powerful as the high-tech or complex.
We also heard that making a start with EX is often delayed by a sense that it’s just too big to take on. The encouraging message from the EX frontline is you don’t have to tackle everything at once to reap the benefits. It’s about finding the low hanging fruit and just getting started. It doesn’t need to be expensive or company-wide – often the simplest strategies can have the biggest impact.
The early returns on EX investment
Although it’s early days in Australia, organisations are already starting to report positive outcomes from their small, but significant shift towards EX as a greater priority. Reductions in employee turnover, higher levels of employee satisfaction, as well as an increase in employee engagement and productivity are just some of the benefits reported from the first wave of Australia’s EX transformation.
These early indicators demonstrate just why organisations see EX as a game changer. More than three-quarters of HR professionals surveyed say EX will become increasingly important in attracting and retaining talent. Those not already running programs, are planning to. And those already running programs, are planning to extend or improve them.
So it’s fair to say we’ll be seeing a slow and steady adoption of EX in Australia, with organisations testing the waters with small and practical bite-sized initiatives. When we dive into the EX current once more to sample stories and opinions for our 2019 report, it will be fascinating to see the variety of ideas being put into practice.
Download the inaugural Maxxia / Ignite Global Employee Experience Report and learn how leading companies are pioneering new approaches to measuring and improving EX.
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