Much has been written in recent years about the importance of customer experience. Now, the conversation is expanding to focus on the important area of end user experience (EUX). More and more, companies are looking to enhance their employees’ experience. EUX enables best practices for the user to increase productivity as well as the company’s attractiveness.
EUX is the future of work because the workplace is no longer defined by a physical office – it’s about the user’s experience. This marks a shift in which successful organizations are putting the focus primarily on the user and the workforce experience. The “physical office” as a definition of an employee’s location has been a misnomer long before the COVID-19 pandemic. Many employees work in companies that have more than one office, and often interact with each other, as well as their customers and prospects, in many locations.
EUX’s increasing demand
This new approach to the working world has become even more valuable amid the work-from-home (WFH) movement prompted by COVID-19. The Brookings Institute in April said that up to half of Americans were working from home. That’s more than double the number of full- or part-time U.S. telecommuters that existed in 2017 and 2018, prior to the pandemic. The expanded remote work trend will continue, both in the U.S. and worldwide, as businesses extend their WFH policies or institute WFH indefinitely. However, those who will eventually return to traditional office settings will want – and expect – more optimal work experiences. The WFH workforce has raised awareness of our need to focus on EUX.
Today’s users are often overwhelmed by complex devices and applications, resulting in a chaotic user experience. Users are searching for solutions that increase successful outcomes and deliverables. End user experience keeps employees engaged and makes teams and businesses more effective. EUX helps by providing employees with easy access to the resources they need, removing friction points and creating more fulfilling work experiences. As Jon Picoult, founder and principal of customer experience advisory firm Watermark Consulting, recently explained in this Forbes article, “happy and engaged employees are indeed a precursor to business success, not a by-product of it.” Engaged employees better position companies to succeed by increasing productivity and the customer retention of organizations in good times and bad, so both employee and employer emerge stronger.
EUX will unlock productivity by making work seamless across devices, applications and services. In order to enable users to do their best work, we must examine the vast troves of available information about their behavioral preferences or archetypes. Archetypes, or personas, highlight the various ways users employ specific products. EUX applications look to simplify cluttered processes by enabling best practices that are compatible with a user’s style, motivations and needs in order to serve them most effectively.
EUX also impacts how employees interact with the core corporate team, surrounding or supporting corporate teams, the supply chain and sales processes. Approaches that enable people to collaborate and connect with needed information and assistance also drive employee engagement and enable businesses facing new challenges in team-building to become stronger.
Focusing on experience also increases a company’s ability to attract talent by improving what it means to be part of that company. Although some industries have not been impacted by high unemployment rates, such as health services and financial activities, other industries such as leisure and hospitality and transportation are experiencing unprecedented levels of unemployment.
Despite these high unemployment rates, talent acquisition will be extremely important. As McKinsey & Co. recently noted, “forward-looking companies know that…the only sustainable advantage is rooted in harnessing the passion, skills, capabilities, judgment, and creativity that people bring to work.” This will be an added benefit of EUX.
Nineteenth-century reformer Fukuzawa Yukichi wrote in An Outline of a Theory of Civilization: “Civilization means not only comfort in daily necessities…but also the refining of knowledge and the cultivation of virtue so as to elevate human life to a higher plane.”
Now is the time to embrace EUX and the digital workplace services that provide employees with the capabilities they want and need, to allow your people and organization to flourish.