• Eller Everett

Prioritising People in the Workplace

Updated: Jul 13

Prioritising People at the Center of Employee Experience Design


No company can function without its employees, and it is widely known that having happy employees is an all round benefit for the whole company. Prioritising people should be at the center of the employee experience design.Just Capital, found that companies that invest in their workers, support their communities, take action for a better planet and encourage a work-life balance have a lower investment risk,higher return on equity, higher net. When the workforce is the key to having a successful business why aren't more companies prioritising them? According to Forbes 80% of American employees feel their company favors shareholders over employees. There are, however, some companies are putting their employees at the top of their priority list. We have identified the most common ways in which companies can, and should, prioritise their workforce. 


Work/Life Balance 


JUST capital finds that companies that prioritise their employees work/life balance have an average 19.2% return on equity in comparison to those who don't with a return on equity on 14.8%. Work/life balance includes anything from flexible working hours and remote work to parental leave and child support. The following companies have stepped up to promote a work/life balance for their employees. IBM has put $50 million towards improving work/life balance for its employees worldwide. The Global Work/Life Fund (GWLF) increases availability of child and elder care services for families. It includes the following; 

  • Increases the supply of services in communities where IBMers live and work. 

  • Creates global initiatives to improve the quality of dependent care. 

  • Supports the development of new and innovative child care programs. 

  • Invests in more than 300 child care centers throughout the world where IBMers receive priority



Other companies such as Microsoft support a work/life balance though adoption and parental leave benefits. The company has increased adoption support from $5000 to $10000 per child. 3M also offers adoption assistance as well as 20 weeks parental leave and scholarships for dependent employees. NVIDIA is named as one of the top 10 JUST companies in 2020, this is not surprising as their parental leave policy includes 22 weeks of full paid leave for mothers and 12 weeks for fathers. Whilst Alphabet offers 18 weeks of paid parental leave for all genders. Citi Group clearly prioritises its employees work/life balance: 


A firm of our size and scale achieves great and big things when we put our mind to it — but my colleagues also positively impact the lives of many in small but meaningful ways each day. The ways we help make our communities stronger, provide opportunities to those who need support, protect our environment and celebrate diversity are the truest reflection of our values and the progress we enable around the world.” Michael L. Corbat, Chief Executive Officer, Citigroup Inc.


They provide support programs for their employees with a focus on work/life balance. 


“We continually enhance the professional development programs and resources offered globally to support the career progress and work/ life balance of our employees.”


Expedia takes a different approach and supports work/life balance through different types of benefits such as travel discounts which also extend to friends and family. Workway also offers unlimited holiday days as well as child support services and Nielsen offers unlimited holiday days for employees. 


Equality 



All companies should be making a conscious effort to support equality in their workplace, ensuring an inclusive, representative and supportive environment. Companies strive for equality through different programs such as leadership training,workshops, equal pay commitments and equal representation to name a few.  NVIDIA continues to rank highly when it comes to equality. The company has a strong focus on gender equality through women in technology programs. Moreover, P&G prioritise gender equality by committing to an equal representation of men and women at all levels of the company. GM has also prioritised gender equality across the board and has achieved equal pay across all salary bands. MasterCard has also stepped up its game. Their team has mentored over 400,000 girls across 25 countries through the Girls4Tech programVerizon and Raytheon have committed to equality, putting priority on ensuring that minority groups are represented across the companies. They have done this through leadership training, workshops and an equal payment commitment. Goldman Sachs promotes equality through “Identity Matters” workshops, educating their employees on race, ethnicity and inclusion barriers. Salesforce is another company that has made its way to the top 10 of JUST companies in 2020. The company publishes an EEO-1 Survey which shows complete disclosure of the workforce statistics, it shares a detailed report of all workers including gender, occupation and ethnicity. In addition to this they also signed the initiative -Paradigm for Parity, committing to full gender equality by 2030



Education 


Education is another way in which companies prioritize their employees. Many companies have a learning and development budget of around 1000 euros, however the percentage of employees that are aware of this budget is extremely low. A few companies, however, are showing how they value their employees by investing in education and further training. Company Owens Corning makes sure employees are aware of mentoring programs and tuition offered, with employees on average receiving 17 hours of education. ExxonMobil and Southwest Airlines both provide training and developmental education programs for their employees whist Cisco and helps employees with tuition fees (up to$10,000) Hub spot is another company that is included in the top 10 JUST companies for 2020 due to its education programs. They offer up to $5000 a year for employees to spend on education.  


Health & Wellbeing 



As mentioned above education is a clear way to prioritise employees in the workplace. Unilevel mixes education whilst also tackling mental health through workshops and training on mental health issues.Although mental health is becoming more and more spoken about and more support is offered it is still not enough.Half of millennials and even more generation Z employees (75%) leave their job due to mental health. This shows the importance of prioritising mental health and ensuring support systems are in place for employees. A number of companies have stepped up in order to support their employees and encourage discussions about mental health. EY(Ernst & Young) adopted an ‘r u okay?’ program in order to encourage conversations around mental health in the workplace. Influence & Co wrote a mental health policy to support their employees. Microsoft has adopted a mental health awareness initiative that has led to employees sharing mental health stories. “We didn’t ask, but it has happened that many of our leaders stepped up and started telling their stories, their personal struggles or ones they’ve witnessed,” said Microsoft’s Sonja Kellen Johnson & Johnson extend their mental health support beyond their employees, also offering the same programs to family members. Additionally they have created a mindfulness app to reduce stress in the workplace. Humana has also stepped up its game and aims to improve the health of their employees by 20% via physical and mental health services and programs. ResMed is another company that prioritises its employees health through offering onsite fitness centres, counselling and quit smoking support.Want to learn how your company can put your employees at the centre of the employee experience design?DRIVE!MPACT can assist you with implementing the right structures and making sure your employee experience design priorities your workforce. Get in touch today!


Drive Impact GmbH

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10115 Berlin

viktoria@dimpact.io

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