I sat down with QuestBack CFO, Eli Cathrine Disch, to get her thoughts on the evolution of the HR role and how organizations can use EFM and social CRM to enhance their employees’ experience – from hire to exit and everything in between.
Here’s what Eli had to say:
Clearly, in the service and knowledge industries, your employees are going to be your single largest resource. To put it bluntly, from a financial perspective in many cases employee costs will be by far the largest cost item in your P&L and the largest single contributor to the company’s performance. Ensuring that you have the right resources, and are taking care of and managing these resources in a good way, is quite simply nothing more than sensible and effective financial stewardship.
I think most of the mistakes organizations make is in what they don’t do, rather than what they do. For instance, they might run standard employee satisfaction surveys, but without asking themselves “are these questions relevant for our organization?” Or they don’t link their reviews of employee satisfaction to events that might impact employees’ satisfaction.
Companies also don’t focus enough on the development over time in the responses. They don’t take action and communicate back to the organization with an employee engagement strategy. And, lastly, they rely too heavily on static surveying tools alone, rather than establishing good channels in order to create an effective dialogue.
If used in the right way – targeting relevant groups with the right tools – social channels can be an effective vehicle to create virtual word-of-mouth about job openings.
I see significant value in using professional social networks such as LinkedIn to see how potential candidates present themselves, what groups they are members of, how much they engage with these groups, and which, if any, intersections exist with my own networks. This allows me to qualify my own references. Looking at activity level and content on Facebook or Twitter may also be an indicator of what kind of person a potential candidate is; what are their concerns, and how do they behave in semi-public settings. There is certainly a global aspect here, as well. My impression is that referrals or recommendations via social networks is an approach used primarily in North America and is not, yet, as prominent in European markets.
By creating a space and effective channels to capture relevant input in a structured way. In Europe, information sharing and employee participation is expected and is indeed secured by law. Traditionally, companies have argued their willingness for such dialogue by pointing to their company intranets and physical “town hall” meetings. By creating a virtual “town hall”, HR can provide relevant information and open for feedback and dialogue in a more timely and relevant fashion.
In my HR role, I have seen a sizeable shift in what HR is “there for”. It used to be that compliance and career development initiatives were what organizations looked to HR for. Now, HR directors are responsible for so much more. They are responding to a workforce that is increasingly used to having a large part of its social and professional interaction via various social media. The generation that has entered the workforce over the last 5 to 10 years is more alert to what is going on both in the organization and outside. They are more continuously switched on and tuned in and thereby may have a blurrier demarcation between their professional and private lives, but they are also more demanding in what they expect from their employers.
Thank you so much for sharing your insight, Eli!
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