Recent international research shows that organisations with satisfied employees perform 2 to 4 percent better than other companies. Add to that the costs of replacing an employee (75% of the annual salary of an experienced staff member with a bachelor degree, or up to 200% of the annual salary for a manager), and the business case is easily made. Many HR blogs call mapping out the employee journey the ‘next big thing’ to retain staff and save costs. But how is it done?

What is an Employee Journey?

We see employee journey as a consistent and energetic journey for your employees from the moment they sign the contract until they leave the organisation. There are various touch points with your organisation during this employee journey. Examples are the first working day and the first performance review. It is important that you surprise and amaze your employees, and exceed their expectations.

Mapping out the Employee Journey

In bigger companies, each aspect of the employee journey is often controlled by different persons or departments. Mapping the employee journey can help you get an insight into why employees leave your company (prematurely). But how do you do this, as a HR manager? Start simple, go through the phases of the employee journey, and write down what would attract you if you were the employee. What is his role and position? How does he feel about the company?

  • Employer branding
    Ask yourself: why would I want to work here? Potential candidates get a picture of your organisation on the basis of what emotions your brand and the content you share, for instance on social media, evoke. Put yourself in the shoes of the new employees that you want to attract and share content aimed at that group. Often, this means cooperating with the marketing department.
  • Recruitment
  • Is the company a match for me? Is this a job position that suits me as a person? And what about the company culture? What are the (standard) application procedures I will have to follow? And how do they make me feel?
  • Preboarding
    What can I expect of my onboarding programme? And what does the new company expect of me? Arousing the enthusiasm of new employees before day 1 is no longer new in the world of HR. But in many organisations, onboarding is all too easily forgotten. A good onboarding programme lets your new hires get to know the company and your business strategy, even before they start work. This way, you encourage involvement and speed up productivity.
  • Onboarding
    The first sixty days are crucial in the employee journey. They can make or break the experience of your new employee. Make sure you offer the right content at the right time. Don’t overwhelm new colleagues with content they don’t need yet.
  • Retention
    Should I stay or should I go? Employees are constantly looking for opportunities, incentives or a promotion. Of course, it is impossible to give everyone the promotion they want when they want it. What can help in those cases is offering extra projects, setting up a think-tank or innovation team where colleagues can bring in their ideas and give their input about solutions.
  • Exit
    What are the highs and lows of my career at this company? If I were boss, what would I do differently? People leaving is not something to be ashamed of. Former employees are a great source of feedback about their experiences in your company. Ask them for honest feedback, also in this phase.


Marketing vs. HR

In the world of marketing, a customer journey is almost often developed to look at the various touch points, to surprise or delight customers and (more importantly) zoom in on those points where a customer might break off a purchase. Mapping out the employee journey in a similar manner gives you a good understanding of why and when staff members leave the company. And, as a result, of what you need to do to keep them.

Do you have experience with mapping out the employee journey in your company? Contact me! Comment on this post or e-mail me at anne@appical.net.

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