“Zero-touch implies that there is no dialogue between IT and employees, when we know there should be some back and forth, just not in the traditional survey sense that we’re used to. DEX is too important to manage by only running a brief survey now and then on a small user group,” says Yassine Zaied, Chief Strategy Officer, Nexthink, in an exclusive interview with EnterpriseTalk.
ET Bureau: Employee churn rates within IT, job satisfaction, and Digital Employee Experience (DEX) seem to be a global industry concern. What are your thoughts?
Yassine Zaied: The importance of digital employee experience has become a board-level concern, and in the past year with remote work, it became mandatory. Engagement, retention, and collaboration depend entirely on a working digital environment that’s supported in a way that employees can be productive. But this puts a lot of pressure on IT who need to deliver a great experience.
ET Bureau: Could budget cuts be a possible reason for the underwhelming job satisfaction?
Yassine Zaied: Budget cuts can certainly put a strain on resources depending on where the cuts are taking place and greatly impact job satisfaction. That is why I recommend approaching IT budgets with an eye for cost efficiency. For example, how is the team approaching employee resource needs? Too often, I see IT oversizing transformation projects to ensure employees have multiple options – sometimes too many options – to keep them happy. For instance, instead of the right tool, they have three tools to choose from. It does not have to be this way. That is where DEX comes in. IT cannot be tasked with enhancing experience without knowing where to begin. A baseline score can better inform enterprises. Then, the company can identify the precise needs of the team and ensure that they are equipped with the right technology.
Another approach to cost-saving is time and efficiency. In a study from last spring, I found that employees are losing close to two hours per week on IT-related issues, which is 100 hours (two work weeks) a year. For a company with 10,000 employees, this could equate to more than half a million dollars per week and nearly $25 million per year lost to IT downtime.
ET Bureau: What is standing in the way of making DEX a priority?
Yassine Zaied: The real challenge isn’t that people aren’t convinced it’s important; 96% of IT leaders are showing more support for DEX-related IT work, according to a new study. The challenge is that they don’t have a baseline to kick off from or a measurement to begin with. Relying on surveys alone is not enough.
IT teams need to take a proactive vs. reactive approach to the IT experience. Instead of employees calling into a helpdesk when they have a problem, IT should be looking out to remediate issues before an employee even realizes there is one. Research shows employees are only reporting 55% of their issues to IT. It implies that they’re suffering through the other half of their issues because they don’t want to take the time out of their day to create a ticket for help. IT needs to build up that trust again, and measuring their success is an important step in realizing what they need to improve.
ET Bureau: In your opinion, how can DEX contribute to a seamless customer experience?
Yassine Zaied: If the company is customer-driven and wants the customers to have the best experience, the employees need to be set up for success. What does it say about commitment to experience if customers are on the phone with customer support, but they can’t pull up the right file or connect to the correct application because their computer is shutting down? If employees are having a bad digital experience, that will impact customers.
Companies need to empower their employees with a positive digital employee experience, so they feel supported and productive at work and can accomplish their tasks with the tools provided to them. It is the responsibility of a business to build its team up for success; and in today’s world, the most crucial foundation of this success is the employee’s digital experience.
ET Bureau: Would you agree that a zero-touch strategy could improve the employee experience?
Yassine Zaied: Yes, to a certain degree it is what employees expect when they want a consumer-like experience with IT, to open and go. But the term “zero-touch” implies that there is no dialogue between IT and employees, when we know there should be some back and forth, just not in the traditional survey sense that we’re used to. DEX is too important to manage by only running a brief survey now and then on a small user group. It needs to be measured factually on sound technical metrics, sentiment data, and at every step of the employee’s digital journey.
Also Read: Why Data is Crucial in Post-Covid Recovery
ET Bureau: What are the most effective strategies for an enterprise to decrease employee churn rates?
Yassine Zaied: The move to remote work has highlighted pain points around an employee’s digital experiences. Companies are at war for talent, trying to retain existing employees and attract new ones. If day-to-day experiences at work are not positive, then employee churn will increase, and new talent will be reluctant to join. Employee experience has historically focused on two important pillars, people and places, which include culture, morale, company perks, and great office spaces. However, as we’ve seen in the shift to working remotely, employees are completely dependent on technology to get their work done. So, if their technology experience is poor, they won’t just be unhappy – they’ll be completely cut off from work. Even with a return to offices in the future, more companies than ever will be supporting remote and hybrid work environments, and this dependency on technology to connect us will only continue to grow. As such, the best way to decrease employee churn is to make sure they have excellent digital experiences and feel supported and empowers by their employee to excel in their roles.
Yassine Zaied is the Chief Strategy Officer of Nexthink, where he is responsible for developing new partnerships and alliances with strategic technology and hardware vendors. Yassine also plays a pivotal role in driving the company’s product innovation and go-to-market strategies. He previously served as EVP of Strategic Alliances & MSPs, where he developed Nexthink’s technology alliance ecosystem and was responsible for solidifying partnerships with several leading service providers. Before joining Nexthink, Yassine held senior business development positions at Setcore Group in Egypt.