If you’re reading this article, it means you wish to focus on improving the employee experience, and you want to do that through mapping employee journeys.
Didn’t we get it right?
You wish to deliver the best experience to your employees, just like other organizations that consider employee experience one of the most crucial business functions. But if you really want to master employee experience, you need to listen to the employees as much as you can.
Unless you listen, you won’t know what an employee wants or expects from you. So, you and your HR team need to listen to employees at every step of their journey to make decisions that can improve their experience.
To listen and understand what your employees want or wish, you need to map their journey from the first day till the very last. And with no further ado, here’s a complete guide on how you can map out the entire employee journey in 2021.
Understanding Employee Journey
Do you remember your grandma’s stories from the good ol’ days? All accounts mostly had the same foundation, where ‘The Hero’ achieved outstanding success after going through hardships or battles.
The things that made the stories differently were slight changes in the plot. Either the character changed or some minor details, but it brought a new story altogether.
The concept of employee journey can be explained similarly. Every organization has a set framework on what their ideal employee is.
This framework is put on them when new employees join, which gradually changes (with small things) along their journeys.
So, if employee journeys are tracked correctly, no two employees would have the same journeys.
And that’s why it’s so crucial for businesses to track them. So, let’s now delve into employee mapping. Ready with your coffee?
What is Employee Journey Mapping?
To improve employee experience, organizations focus on knowing the employee journeys. The best way to do that is by employee mapping. And the best way to explain employee mapping is with maps!
Open a world map on your smartphone and select the country you live in. Now, select the state, city, area, street, and finally, your apartment or house number. That’s you right there! So, from the world map, we zoomed in till we could find your residence.
Organizations do the same to know about the journey of an employee.
When someone joins them, an empty block is dedicated to him/her, which is constantly updated with information until this employee is at the organization.
And looking at the information on this block, your HR team can know all about the employee, his journey, experiences, and work. That’s the power of creating an employee journey map.
Apart from knowing the entire employee journey, such mapping helps organizations to prioritize resources, clarify roles, and identify crucial moments by mapping journeys to identify employee satisfaction levels. Employee journey mapping also allows you to:
- Form a common organizational view on how to deliver the right employee experience.
- Focus on the EX program that works best on employees’ common crucial moments.
- Understanding employees on an emotional level to see what motivates them.
- Developing employee-centric thinking and actions on an organization-wide level.
- Appreciate employees when it matters the most for them.
- Developing an ideal employee profile based on your organization’s culture and needs.
Different Stages Of Employee Journey Mapping
You now know what employee journey and employee journey mapping are. But what are the different stages of this mapping process? We’ll figure that out here. Feel free to use these stages based on your business requirements. Let’s start, then.
Finding The Right Employee
Believe it or not, the most common brand deteriorating mistake happens in this first employee mapping stage. From what we’ve seen, organizations either take the recruitment process too casually or too seriously.
Don’t get us wrong, being serious during recruitment is good, but what’s the point in copying Google’s 19.5 step interview process (19.5! Yeah, that’s right) for a job role that doesn’t need that?
The process of employee mapping starts from this stage.
The HR team should devise a process on how potential employees would find about the job role, how they’ll apply, how you’ll conduct the interviews, and how you’ll get back to them. With the decision?
We’ve all come across job postings were applying to it was a pain in the back.
Instead of asking for a resume and a few simple introductory questions, they conduct a mini-interview right in the application form! This makes the process long, longer than what the candidate hoped for, affecting their first impression of the organization.
Hopefully, your organization doesn’t have such an application process.
The best way to take corrective actions is to talk with your recently hired employees or go through the process yourself even if you have. This way, you and the HR team would exactly see where the problem lies, and tweaks can then be made.
As we mentioned at the start, keep the interview process based on your requirements. Anything more than what you need is a waste of time for your recruitment team and the candidate.
Once you’ve found the right candidate, discuss their salary and bonuses as quickly as you can. Don’t keep them in the dark for months, saying they’re selected but not discussing the salary package until a week before joining.
In the complete employee experience journey, this is one of the most crucial yet the most ignored step. As an organization looking to map the entire employee journey, this is where you need to be proactive.
Either be upfront about the overall package or make sure the selected candidate knows about it as early as possible.
Please don’t mistake giving less package just because the experience and culture in your organization are good.
Experience & culture are different stories, one which the selected candidates would think about after getting an expected salary package.
Once you’ve selected candidates and they’ve accepted the salary package, the next step is the onboarding process. But before onboarding, there’s pre-boarding. Again, this can be part of the employee mapping process or left out depending on you and the HR team.
Our say would be to include this stage, albeit in a small manner, to give joiners the time and information to understand organizational goals, culture, and expectations.
As part of the employee mapping process, the least your teams should do is to give joiners a thorough guide on what their first day, week, month, and year would look like in the organization.
And, if possible, take them out for a team lunch before their first day. This simple act would help relieve anxieties and bring excitement for their new job.
The first day is as crucial as it can get for your employee experience process. In the entire employee mapping process, this stage is an integral part.
New joiners are already feeling nervous (even after a pre-boarding process) about their new job, office, meeting new colleagues, and working on new business goals. So seeing people staring at them, not knowing they’re new, won’t be a good start at all.
70% of employees wish to be empowered to succeed in an organization, and it all starts from day 1! Ask your recent joiners about their experience to get an idea of how things can be improved.
If you want employees to stay for long, the key is to keep evolving and mapping this stage.
Employees, new or old, need to constantly learn and grow along with the organization. Unfortunately, we often see companies giving the right employee experience during the onboarding process but struggling to do that later in the employee journey.
This severely affects their employee experience levels, which is why this stage should be an essential part of any employee mapping process.
If employees are growing well, they’ll be dedicated to working on goals and will deliver results. The opposite is seen when employees get stagnant in the organization. They lose the motivation to keep gunning for goals and results.
This hurts both the employees and the company, but that’s how it is. A 30, 60, 90-day plan for employees would be a great place to start. But a detailed structure, with long-term planning, needs to be put in place if elevating their experience with your company is the goal.
This is again a stage where organizations falter in the employee mapping process. Once the employees are settled well, the engagement level with them dives.
They are given their KPIs and projects while expecting results robotically. The only proper engagement that takes place during business hours is about work. What about employee engagement and their wellness?
Why does that take a back seat?
A 360-degree assessment tool is a must for organizations to keep the employee experience and engagement levels right.
From our experience of building a healthy work environment, we’ve observed that performance reviews are the most crucial step in the employee mapping. This is because every employee’s motivation and work ethic depends on what their manager and leaders think about their recent them and their work.
Every employee’s reaction and performance review reports should be properly mapped, and based on that, actions should be taken.
As mentioned, a 360-degree assessment tool would do well in generating reports based on employee surveys that’ll help companies upgrade their EX programs.
Here are a few questions your HR team should ask themselves before conducting a performance review:
- Who would all give feedback during the performance review?
- What kind of feedback would they receive? How detailed would that be?
- Are these performance reviews happening once a year or every quarter?
- Where can employees go for further feedback, guidance, or clarification?
- For what work are they receiving feedback?
- How can the overall performance review process be improved?
Recognition & Rewards
If the employees have done well, don’t just appreciate them personally or over a performance review. Recognize them in front of everyone while also reward them.
Every employee wants to see something come out of their hard work. No, we aren’t just talking about a wallet or an Amazon gift card. Give recognition and rewards that get etched in their memories and motivate them to do better. Want ideas? Use this.
What structure do you have in place for employees getting promotions? For example, are they talking to the ones who worked in that role, or do you have an additional onboarding process for that?
Organizations often miss out, but this stage should be included in the employee mapping process.
Taking up a new role can be a daunting task if support and guidance are not given to employees, and that affects how satisfied they are with their employer?
The questions to outline and guide employees with are:
- What are their additional responsibilities?
- Where can they get mentorship from?
- What is going to change in their day-to-day?
- What exactly would their targets be?
- How much time would they get to understand and adapt to the new role?
These are the crucial questions to ask and answer in the advancing phase of the employee journey mapping process.
An employee who spent decades at an organization is now planning to retire. This employee has delivered whatever was expected from him. He has mentored young talents and overseen their growth. Now, how will an organization cope with the loss of this employee?
The scenario here could’ve also been of someone leaving a company for another role at another firm. Or an organization, unfortunately, need to cut back on staff.
Think it from your perspective, how will the remaining employees deal with such events?
If someone is retiring, leaving, or is getting fired, how would you want this information to pass on? Also, how easy is the moving-on process for someone who’s retiring, leaving, or fired? How are you handling it from your end? Is it warm and personal?
These questions need to be answered and kept as a part of your employee mapping process.
This is because every successful business succeeds when they stay ahead of the curve and plan for the future, not just in terms of revenue and growth, but for delivering the right employee experience to new and departing employees.
How To Create An Employee Journey Map?
To improve employee experience, the employee mapping process is pivotal. You can’t leave that and focus on improving the experience with just bonuses and a pleasant working environment.
Employees in 2021 expect more than that to stay satisfied. We’ve talked about the different stages where employee mapping can be done, but how to do that? This is one question that remains, and that’s what we’ll talk about here.
So with no further ado, time to let the cat out of the bag and discuss the 6-step process to creating an employee journey map.
#1 Build Personas
The first step starts with dividing your employees into different segments, also known as personas, based on their roles and qualities.
These personas shouldn’t be created based on age, gender, or experience, as that would mix employees of two distinct qualities and roles when their journeys in the organization are bound to be different.
A software engineer, for example, is likely to have a very different experience and journey than someone from your sales team. Your employee mapping process would be far more effective if you segment employees rightly.
#2 Map Their Journeys
Once you have different employee personas, start mapping out their interactions with the organization, right from their initial contact (the recruitment process) till the last day.
An employee experience management tool would do wonders here, as it’ll survey, store, and analyze every data about your employees to find actionable insights.
#3 Map Feedbacks
To truly understand the level of employee experience in your organization, map the feedback for employee personas with their respective employee journeys.
So for each persona, there should be a feedback mechanism attached to each stage in the employee journey that allows them to give or receive feedback without waiting an entire quarter or year for it.
The primary reason for this feedback mapping is to understand how employees are feeling within the organization and what should be done to improve their experience? From our perspective, this is the most crucial step of the employee mapping process.
#4 Measure Consistently
The next step in creating an employee journey map is consistent evaluation and analysis of feedback. You’ve put a feedback mechanism in every stage of the employee journey, but that would give proper results only if It’s analyzed the right way and consistently.
First, there should be an organization-wide common metric for taking feedback. NPS would be a great option. You can also go for Likert questions to include questions involving core 5-point scale items.
Next, there should be a consistent way of analyzing (measuring) the collected feedback. For example, if one team is tasked to analyze and present the results of such feedbacks, then it makes no sense for other teams to do the same work.
Similarly, if you’re using one employee engagement tool for feedback collection and analysis, then don’t try new tools again and again. That’ll lead to inconsistency in results and eventually alter your employee journey maps. This is not what you would want, right?
#5 Go For Automation
Sending out a survey manually to check engagement levels or analyzing the feedback results manually is a drain on resources, time, and energy for your teams.
Instead, like we’ve mentioned several times, go for an all-in-one employee experience management software that takes care of all your employee experience needs and helps your HR team with the mapping process.
#6 Combine, Evaluate, Improve
Focusing on employee experience doesn’t mean giving up on employee engagement surveys. They should be combined while creating the employee journey map to get a proper understanding of what’s improving your employee’s experience and what’s not.
We’ve seen organizations conducting shorter, more frequent employee engagement surveys, evaluating results, and then mapping that up to the overall employee journey.
Combining employee experience with engagement surveys would reveal the areas of improvement like attrition rates, cross-functional collaboration, onboarding process, training, and more.
Also, when you see an employee journey from start to finish, you’ll observe how the organization improved itself in giving the right employee experience along the way. For any organization that’s gunning for growth, this is powerful.
Employee Journey Map Template To Get You Started
Before wrapping it up, let’s give you one of our employee journey map templates that has everything we’ve discussed. Plus, this will get you started with your own employee mapping process. On we go.
Employee Journey Stages
Recognition & Reward
Applicant Tracking System (ATS)
- Recruiter contact
- Information on company goals and expectations
- Lunch with teams
- Desk, email, and accessory allocation
- Training sessions
- Performance reviews
- Employee Experience Management Software
- 1-1 meeting with manager and leaders
- Exit interview
- Submits resume through ATS
- Shortlisting & recruiter contact
- Role-based interview
- Immediate result declaration
- Role presentation
- Goal setting for the first month & quarter
- Meeting with the top management
- Expert seminars
- 1-1 meeting with managers
- Employee performance review
- Recognitions & reward events
- New role and team
- Formal resignation over email after the exit interview
- Receives final salary, bonuses, and rewards.
- More specific interviews can be conducted.
- Need to include more diverse candidates for interview
- Physical shortlisting for specific top-management roles.
- HR team working with the IT team to improve ATS’ functioning.
Blocks left vacant are filled when employees with specific personas or as individuals move ahead with their journey.
Well, we covered everything that needed to be covered about employee mapping. From understanding about employee journey to talking about different stages of the employee mapping process, we had the right start.
Then, we moved onto giving you a 6-step process to creating an employee journey map, and we wrapped up with a sample employee journey map template. All that’s left for you is to implement this article and create employee journey maps that could take their experience to the next level.
We’re rooting for you to do that. For any help, we’re here 24/7. Feel completely free to contact us. Until next time…