In 2023, it’s still the economy of the worker. Despite high-profile layoffs in famous tech companies like Salesforce and Facebook, employees aren’t dissuaded to strive for fair salaries, flexible work, and healthy culture in the workplace. To put it another way, team members are maintaining their voices, and they’re asking for a positive employee experience at work.

It’s important to know what your team is asking for — and what they’re not asking for — when it comes to psychological safety, fulfillment, and development. To keep up with these employee needs, I enjoyed reading Qualtric’s 2023 Employee Experience Trends Report, and I want to summarize four key points from their study. Each of these points is like a two-sided coin: on one side, there’s something that your team really wants, but there’s an equal and opposite side that will frustrate them (and potentially lead to retention issues).

Point 1: Stability and security, not volatility

Given the uncertain economic factors everyone’s facing, it’s no surprise that employees want to be confident that their job is here to stay. Employees will be very sensitive to change or anything that hints at instability.

Provide indicators of longevity: make it a point to invest in employee development and education. Be open in communicating long-term plans, and spend intentional time talking about roadmaps and future company goals. Engaging in these behaviors will imply to employees that the organization — and therefore, their jobs — are here for the long haul. Alleviating worries and cultivating employee trust will bolster your team’s satisfaction and mitigate stress.

Point 2: Boundaries, not imbalance

Workers value work-life balance and the boundaries that exist between their professional and personal lives. Thanks to movements like the 4-day workweek or “#ActYourWage,” employees feel more empowered than ever to fight against unfair schedules and overwork.

Support your employees as they reclaim their time by setting maximum hourly work limits. Encourage employees to take paid time off for holidays or vacations.

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Point 3: Efficient systems, not frustrated burnout

Systems and software need to be the right fit for the job. In fact, having the wrong tools is correlated with a higher risk for burnout.

Consider doing a time audit to see which tasks take the longest. Maybe there’s a process fix that can be implemented, or software that can automate frustrating or time-consuming activities.

Point 4: Compatibility, not (only) compensation

Today’s workforce is values-driven. Workers are interested in more than just a paycheck — they want their jobs to reflect what they care about. Having a healthy work culture is key to making sure your company and its employees aren’t mismatched when it comes to the compatibility of values.

Studies show that you can attract and retain talented employees by being open about volunteer opportunities, ESG, social consciousness, or DEI initiatives. Be open about your vision and mission statements and allow employees to express their feedback.

In short, it’s important to listen to what the workforce is saying. These days, retention is the smartest investment for your HR and PeopleOps teams to focus on. By centering on stability, boundaries, efficient systems, and compatibility of values, you’ll be able to keep your teams happy and productive.

Category: Workforce Management