Using Data Analytics and Digital Marketing Techniques to Positively Impact Employee Retention and Engagement
By Laurie Zaucha, VP - HR and Organizational Development, Paychex
How is this precise level of targeting possible, you wonder? It’s marketing. More specifically, it’s digital marketing – which happens to be the most in-demand of all marketing jobs out there today.
So, why should that level of customization only apply to marketing? It shouldn’t. HR leaders and technologists need to start thinking more like digital marketers.
As more and more workers today have come of age in a digital world, the way we as HR leaders effectively communicate to those employees needs to change. In fact, a recent Monster survey revealed that only six percent of employees who polled agreed that their HR practices are highly relevant to them. Clearly, an opportunity exists.
Not all employees need or want the same information, and those HR organizations that continue to rely solely on generic all-employee HR communications, run the risk of those seemingly important messages becoming nothing but noise to the employee.
Employees today want only the information they need, when they need it, and how they want it. They expect the same consumerization and customization from you at work that they experience on Facebook or Amazon. Furthermore, strategically targeted communications can be used to positively impact employee engagement and retention. For HR leaders today, acknowledging that growing need and building a strategy to address it will pay huge long-term dividends.
Employees today want only the information they need, when they need it, and how they want it
The good news is that you probably already have the data that will drive the insights needed to accomplish targeted communication. And the technology already exists to easily deliver it. Before you can strategize, though, it’s vitally important to understand what type of data you have at your disposal and how might you analyze that data to produce actionable insights.
If you’re looking for ways in which you might think like a digital marketer, here are some ideas:
• Studies have shown that employees tend to assess their current job status – and many times yearn for something “bigger and better” – around milestone life events such as birthdays, class reunions, and service anniversaries. That’s when they are most likely to respond to that LinkedIn outreach. HR can predict when those moments of reflection will occur and target communications to those employees with messages relative to career development opportunities or internal job postingsjust before that milestone event occurs. Let them know they can get “bigger and better” without changing companies.
• Target custom communications is about career development to employees in their first year on the job so that they are aware of future career opportunities. And target career opportunity communications caters to your high-potential employees when they are nearing 18 to 24 months in their position.
• Consider targeting communications for employees who applied for, but did not landan internal job opening. Based on their skillset, take a page from the Amazon experience and serve up to those employees other internal job postings as a form of “you might also be interested in …”
• Your LMS should be leveraged for more than just learning. By correlating LMS usage data with employee demographics and applicant tracking data, you can predict which learning and career opportunities your employees might be interested in.
• You probably know which groups of employees have the tendency to feel overworked or stressed. Those employees may reach the point of being a flight-risk and should be communicated with about things like achieving work-like balance and overall well-being.
• Do you track employee participation in company events or perks? For example, if you track employees who take advantage of your employee discount at the local zoo, you can selectively send them invitations to also take advantage of a local museum discount. It may not seem like a lot, but all those perks add up when it comes to the employee value proposition you provide your employees.
Bottom line: The days of one-size-fits-all HR communications are coming to an end and we need to start thinking differently and creatively. The time has come to embrace a more personalized, individual approach – and those who do will reap the benefits of increased employee engagement and retention.
Founded in 1971 and headquartered in New York, Paychex (NASDAQ: PAYX) is a leading provider of integrated human capital management solutions for payroll, HR, retirement, and insurance services.
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