While the Digital Employee Experience (DEX) is closely associated with the world of IT, it’s safe to say that it transcends its boundaries and encompasses much more by its definition. IT is its major constituent and plays a significant role in the whole process but the overall digital experience is also influenced by other factors. So what exactly is important and how can you influence the improvement of DEX among your employees?

What is the digital employee experience?

In today’s companies, the digital workplace provided by IT is, in most cases, an everyday occurrence. Employees have grown accustomed to the hybrid or remote work mode and realize that digitization is no longer a choice, but the future and a necessity. However, it often turns out that the digital workplace is not facilitating as expected and does not affect productivity positively, on the contrary. And this is where the vicious cycle begins.

Employees aren’t happy that the system isn’t working, failures occur that delay their work, and they have little control or ability to change it. They feel frustrated, but there is nothing they can do because the IT department is responsible for the system. This one, in turn, is often overloaded with work or doesn’t have enough data or capacity to resolve the issue quickly and efficiently.

Digital employee experience describes the overall experience of employees in the digital workplace. After all, the applications or systems in place at a given company can be a support and a help, but it can also become a nuisance that causes frustration. A positive digital employee experience is an important aspect that every enterprise should foster. It’s not just about employee productivity and better work results, though naturally, they’re important too.

Positive experience also affects employees’ commitment to their tasks and even their opinion of a given company, which is especially important in the context of attracting new employees.

Positive digital employee experience – what does it consist of?

Technology should serve employees and improve the quality of their work, as well as enable them to perform tasks efficiently. The moment the company’s technology ceases to benefit employees, something is simply wrong. Detecting this faulty component and replacing or repairing it is a key element if a company cares about a positive digital experience for employees. What is worth paying attention to?

  1. Efficient communication
  2. While the term DEX encompasses many aspects, there are a few that are particularly worth looking at. First and foremost is the ease of communication and information sharing between employees and supervisors. The company’s tools should support and facilitate this, as it is a key element in how employees feel about a positive digital experience.

  3. Quality and functionality
  4. What also matters is the quality of the technologies and their ability to operate on different devices, as well as their adaptation to the needs of employees. They are the main users and their opinion and feedback on the software can contribute a lot. Therefore, it is worth encouraging workers to share their opinions on the topic. The information collected can help in making work a better place.

  5. Preparing for change
  6. The positive digital experience is also influenced by the employees’ attitudes toward technology and the changes happening in the company. Not everyone is open to change and will welcome information about the introduction of a new system. It’s even safe to say that the vast majority will be resistant to this type of novelty. However, much depends on how you prepare them for it and what opportunities you give them.

It is worthwhile to honestly inform employees about the direction of the development and present them with the next steps involved. This frank description of the situation and pointing out the benefits of the changes is crucial to shaping their attitudes toward the upcoming transition. Often, concerns about the new tool also stem from a skills gap. An effective way to change this is to introduce hands-on training that will give employees new opportunities and supplement their knowledge of digital skills, thus making it easier for them to work and adapt to the coming changes.

Why take care of a positive digital employee experience?

One of the first benefits of a positive digital employee experience that comes to mind is improved employee productivity. This, of course, translates into higher profits for the company. However, taking care of how employees feel about the digital workplace isn’t just a financial issue. Why else should you care about making DEX positive?

  • Less employee turnover: a satisfied employee who has no major problems at work and doesn’t get frustrated with the company’s tech, is an employee who does not think about leaving. Nowadays, there are a whole lot of offers on the labor market, so even such a seemingly insignificant element can become a detrimental factor in reasoning towards changing employers.
  • A sense of proficiency: the tools that employees are exposed to should be simple enough to set up and run so that anyone can manage.
  • Less information noise: getting distracted and losing focus by too many things going on is the greatest threat that can kill productivity. That’s why tools should not only be simple but also user-friendly enough to make everyone focused on their job.
  • Work flexibility: Modern enhancements let you from anywhere on earth, which is especially important for some employees.
  • Sense of belonging: While employees value flexibility and the ability to work remotely or in teams, they still want to feel like team members and know that they are a vital part of the organization.

5 ways to improve digital employee experience (DEX)

As you can see, employees and their experience with the digital workplace are the foundation of a company’s success. If you know something isn’t working in your organization and it’s high time for a change, do it. Where to start?

  1. Get information from the source
  2. Employees who face current technology daily are the best source of information. It is worth tapping into their knowledge and asking what they expect from the tools and what could improve their experience. Understanding the needs and expectations of employees is an absolute must. Many managers think they know perfectly well what their employees need without ever asking them. This approach is a big mistake.

  3. Take care of the basics – bet on training
  4. Sometimes it is not the tools used that are the problem, but the inability to use them. You have to reckon with the fact that some employees are experts in their field, but they don’t have the right knowledge to handle digital tools efficiently and find their way around the work environment. Providing resources that will allow them to learn easily is therefore fundamental to improving their digital employee experience.

  5. Personalize tools – customize tools to meet the needs of your employees
  6. Tools should make work easier and allow you to focus on what is important. Considering that each employee needs the same set of tools is wrong. It is worth betting on full personalization in this regard and providing individual employees with only those items that are needed and improve productivity and employee satisfaction. The basis for making such changes, however, is to collect data that will clearly show how individual employees use technology and which elements of it they need.

  7. Bet on communication
  8. In the era of hybrid and remote work, attention to communication is crucial. First of all, it allows employees to avoid mistakes and streamlines their work, but it also influences their sense of belonging to the organization and increases engagement. Creating an internal communication channel encourages employees to share information, express opinions, and ask questions.

  9. Improving DEX is a process – remember this
  10. The key is to have the attitude that your task does not end at all with the implementation of changes. Technology is changing, and new tools are constantly being improved, so there is no room for settling on your laurels here. Even though the current changes are producing results and employees are showing satisfaction with their digital workplace, it will still be different. Unfortunately, this is an ongoing process and requires constant updating of information, including from superiors. The organization’s task, therefore, is to keep its hand on the pulse, watch for changing technological trends and participate in training to help update knowledge.

Change in an organization is inevitable and the ability to adapt to it is the only effective way to survive and succeed as a business. Digital employee experience is not just a fashionable buzzword but a real issue worth paying attention to. This aspect will benefit not only the employees but also the entire company.

digital employee experience

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Author: Nicole Mankin

HR manager with an excellent ability to build a positive atmosphere and create a valuable environment for employees. She loves to see the potential of talented people and mobilize them to develop.