In today’s digital world, consumers can buy products, book a table, purchase tickets, reserve a hotel room and schedule appointments through their mobile phone. They can lodge a complaint, give a compliment and get answers to questions by connecting directly with the brand or like-minded consumers via social media, chat and other online communication tools.
These interactions are not an accident. They are carefully designed by someone that owns the consumers’ mobile and, more broadly, digital experiences. The owner’s job is to provide a seamless transition between the physical and virtual worlds and between digital channels. All to provide a consistence brand experience and build loyalty.
With that in mind, who owns the employees’ digital experience at your company? Chances are the answer is “nobody” and you are not alone.
Most clients I speak with have a hard time deploying mobile solutions to their employees. This is especially true for tools like mobile workforce management which are largely intended to be used by employees on personal devices outside of work. Challenges and concerns voiced by legal, finance and human resources along with competing priorities delay, cripple and even prevent offering employees a digital experience. This is a tragedy because the digital experience is important for your employees.
Your employees are used to using their mobile devices as consumers. They are the consumers that I described at the start of this article. They are used to shopping, arranging dinner plans and booking flights from their phones. They live in a digital world in their personal lives. They want that same experience at work. They want to use their mobile devices to better communicate with colleagues and management. They want a real-time view of their time, schedule and pay. They want digital control of their work lives, and they are willing to find a new job if you cannot provide that experience.
Companies that lack an owner of employees’ digital experience will have a very difficult time addressing the noise from the naysayers will delivering the experience employees want. The good news is that the path to creating this role is already charted.
Most companies did not start with a person that owned the consumers’ digital experience. Most companies were dragged into it when they realized that they were losing orders because customers could not make a purchase or reservation from their phone, a digital-only competitor disrupted their business, or customer complaints were being unanswered on Twitter or Facebook. Such incidents forced companies to create a new position to establish and execute a digital strategy.
We now stand in a similar spot with the employees’ digital experience. Companies have two paths. The first is to follow the same path set by the consumer side of the house: get beat by competitors, chase employees away until the problem is recognized and finally create an owner for the employee digital experience to try and turn things around. The second is to recognize what is ahead, proactively create an owner for the employee digital experience and become the digital disruptor for those on the first path. Which path do you want to follow?