A person's motivational factors can differ during different periods of his life and depending on his temperament and character.
The same goes for talents in a company. Depending on where they are in their career path, their priorities are likely to change over time. We invited Galina Stoilova, HR consultant in our team, to share why it is important for companies to purposefully invest time and resources in researching the expectations of their employees and what are the hidden benefits of the effective collection and use of such information.
Why is it essential for companies to know the expectations of their employees?
Knowing the expectations of the teams and the people in them helps to create more effective and successful business strategies, as well as to improve the working environment and working conditions, as it enables business goals and methods of achieving them to be calibrated against the needs and expectations of the people who work daily to achieve them.
Employee expectations research can also be used to evaluate staff performance. If people in a company expect certain conditions from their job position and these expectations do not match reality, this can affect their performance, evaluation, and attitude towards the organization and have a negative impact on overall productivity.
Researching expectations gives us a basis for taking adequate measures to retain and increase employee satisfaction in a relation to their expectations.
How can organizations effectively collect and use such information?
Depending on the specifics of the company, the size and quality of established communication channels, employers use different methods to collect information, the most common of which are:
Regular meetings between management and staff – these provide opportunities for open dialogue where talent is encouraged to share their needs and expectations. The benefits you can get are information that can be used as an opportunity to undertake more in-depth research on the topics raised, and the downside is publicity and the lack of desire for employees to enter into direct communication on pressing issues.
Surveys or other types of written questionnaires - this method makes it possible to collect more specific and structured information that can be used to make decisions and define a long-term action strategy. The benefits here are eliciting certain information, and the limitations come from the set parameters that may not allow the respondents to express everything they wish.
Interviews – they offer an individual approach to each employee and can generate a lot of information. Unfortunately, it takes a lot of time and requires prior training from the specialist who will conduct it.
In addition, various tools on the market can provide various analytics regarding employee expectations and satisfaction. Experts from Manpower's Assert Center recommend research using Harrison's methodologies or, for larger organizations, the Net promoter score.
Harrison's Work Preference Questionnaire can give us the information we need to make strategic decisions at several levels - for the entire company, for individual teams, and for the specific talent, we want to retain. Using Harrison's tools, we gain a deeper insight into our professionals and teams, looking at eight different areas of expectation related to:
The results, in addition to showing the employee's current focus, can also provide information on the degree of satisfaction with this indicator. The research is an excellent tool, based on the results of which individual conversations can be held and the necessary changes can be outlined to meet expectations with reality.
How does investing in talent engagement and development drive long-term benefits?
Any investment in engaging the teams and people working in the company in the long term would bring positives. Studies on the subject prove that purposeful work in the direction of the development and engagement of talents in an organization leads to the following positive effects:
Increase employee motivation and satisfaction - If people in an organization are satisfied with the working conditions, they will be more motivated to achieve better results. Achieving high results should motivate them to become better at their jobs.
Increased efficiency - When talent feels valued and has development opportunities, they tend to work harder and more productively, which can lead to greater efficiency and success rates.
Improving the quality of services or products - Well-prepared and trained teams and employees can contribute to the systematic improvement of services and offering quality. In this process, it is important that they have the freedom to express their opinions and be included in a range of formats that encourage them to share their ideas.
Strengthening the sense of belonging - When people perceive the organization as a family to which they wish to belong, it would be very difficult for them to make the decision to leave. Feeling that one is part of something bigger and has the ability through one's actions to change it is one of the most natural ways to create a sense of belonging.
Taking care of the well-being of its employees, in fact, the company also works in the direction of taking care of its customers.
Investment in people engagement and development is one of the most important things for any organization that strives for sustainable results in the market.