Customer service starts with HR. As advisory firm McKinsey and Co. writes, “To be good with customers requires the organization to be at its best internally in terms of services provided to employees.”
In other words, while a department like HR doesn’t interact directly with an organization’s customers, it still delivers services and products to a specific constituency: employees. These “internal customers” – who often do interface with the business’s true customers – rely on good internal service in order to work at their best. Customer service is a “value chain” that extends from the backend of the business to its outermost edges.
But how can HR improve this internal customer experience? Here are four ways.
1: Use “design thinking” to bolster “employee experience”
While these may sound like buzzwordy terms, the ideas behind them are making serious inroads into business today. As Deloitte describes it, “Rather than focusing narrowly on engagement and culture, many leading organizations aim to improve the employee experience as a whole.” Deloitte describes Ford Motor Co. as an example: “The lesson from the Ford experience is simple: By focusing on the employee experience, HR leaders can improve employee engagement, empower teams and leaders, and develop workforce solutions that will be useful and compelling to employees.
2: Deploy employee self-service portals
Employees appreciate convenience and time-saving measures just as much as external customers do. When it comes to HR, employees can handle many functions themselves through self-service portals. These tools allow them to view and manage information regarding benefits, compensation, status, and more. For example, they can change withholdings online, or they may be able to swap shifts or schedule vacation time. Sierra-Cedar has found that organizations with self-service portals serve 10% more employees without increasing HR staff.
3: Make HR mobile-accessible
Today’s workforce is increasingly on the move, and any self-service portals or other HR tools should be accessible from mobile devices. Further, HR departments should actively design mobile processes specifically for small screens to reduce frustration and increase convenience for its internal customers. A mobile-optimized HR experience will foster a better employee experience overall.
4: Offer better benefit programs
Employee worries about their wellbeing will impact their experience at the office. For example, nearly one out of three employees have had the experience of lying awake at night worrying about money, according to MetLife’s 15th Annual (2017) U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study. A quarter say they’re less productive at work because of financial worries. Gaining access to better benefits can help address these concerns and improve their workplace experience.
CoAdvantage, one of the nation’s largest Professional Employer Organizations (PEOs), helps small to mid-sized companies with HR administration, benefits, payroll, and compliance. To learn more about our ability to create a strategic HR function in your business that drives business growth potential, contact us today.