TSI Blog

What’s Most Important? The Start, The Middle Or The End?

October 15th, 2015 by Jacqueline Mitchell

BookWhen it comes to the experience your employees have with your company, what they think about you and how they represent you to others – it’s throughout; in fact it starts before they join you, and doesn’t end when they decide to leave…

When we talk to our clients about engagement we find that most completely ‘get’ the concept that their employees can be their ambassadors. In a previous blog we explained what the (net) promoter score is which tells the employer how likely their employees are to actively promote them to others. Many employers tend to focus their attention for building and maintaining employee engagement on the period when someone is an active employee – they’ve started with you, and haven’t yet resigned. But some tend to forget that the experiences our employees have, upon which they form an opinion of the organisation, starts long before they join and just doesn’t end when they resign; so why is this when an employee’s experience can be at its worst?

It has become increasingly common for the recruitment experience people have to be really poor. People who apply for jobs are often shepherded through automated systems that reject their CV merely for lack of ‘key’ words in their application. Applicants are lucky to receive any kind of communication from the hiring company; but if one is lucky, a stock – thanks but no thanks email might be returned to those for whom the journey ends.

Candidates who take the time to book time off work, pay their own travel expenses and perhaps buy a new suit are all too often fast tracked through interviews with poorly skilled (for interviewing) hiring managers who struggle to probe the candidate’s experience without resorting to questions like “if you were an animal what would you be?”, and who are unable or unwilling to give constructive feedback to unsuccessful candidates afterwards. What image does this present about the company?

When our staff decide to leave our employment, are we always supportive of that? Do we try to tie employees into long notice periods when their minds have already moved on to pastures new, pointing to their contractual terms without thinking about whether there’s a point to it? What’s wrong with tying up the few loose ends and sending them off with our best wishes?

Equally, trust can fly out the window. Staff are put on garden leave and access to company data is revoked in order to ‘protect’ company interests. What happened to the years of honest service previously? Do we forget that in the moment of grappling with the realisation that they no longer want to work for us?

Employees have the potential to be ambassadors for a company long before joining and long after they leave. As employers, we only have to choose to be more mindful of the start and the end, and not just the bit in the middle.

If you would like to know more about how we at The Survey Initiative can help with employee engagement levels, or any other employee research aspect, then why not give us a call on +44 (0)1255 850051 or contact us via the web.

Written by Jacqueline Mitchell
Jacqueline has over 20 years’ experience of people management gained across all key employment sectors, in large and smaller businesses; in later years as a Board level HR&OD Director. Her broad experience has enabled her to gain an insightful and intuitive understanding of what it takes to lead a successful organisation through optimising its people practices. Crucially, not just by talking about it, but by doing it.

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