Slow Moving Job Market Highlights Need For Re- Imagined Employee Experience

Written by
Rebecca Smith

Jan 4, 2021

Jan 4, 2021 • by Rebecca Smith

The current state of the U.S. job market is anything but encouraging. There have been slow moving upward trends, however, still no major shifts that would signal a pre-pandemic job market making a comeback anytime soon.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics’ Current Employment Statistics Highlights for November, employment payroll rose by 245,000 jobs. 

This is good, but still nothing to be celebrating over. The current job market is still 9.8 million below February’s employment numbers. Nearly all industries saw a rise in job offerings. 

Transportation, business services, healthcare, construction, manufacturing and warehousing all saw job market growth. However, government and retail industries saw declines in November. 

Government experienced the largest declines with employment falling by 99,000. Major takeaways from government job market woes includes 86,000 reduced payrolls and 93,000 temporary worker layoffs.

The slow moving job market in November has made the employee experience more important than ever before. With federal COVID aid packages amping up in Q1 of 2021, many American workers may voluntarily resign from the workforce.

Companies Eagerly Improving Employee Experience To Meet Workforce Needs

To keep employees happy and working, business leaders are taking a hard look at company culture and employee experience during the COVID pandemic. Remote employees are generally positive about their daily work and engagement.

Meeting employee expectations during a crisis while managing client demand can prove challenging. “No one could have anticipated the importance of rapid response and the ability to adjust which came with the COVID-19 outbreak,” Florida digital PR agency Exults explained. “While states, along with their businesses and organizations begin to reopen, uncertainty still abounds making economic forecasts somewhat grim.”

Business leaders are searching for answers, and many have found a re-imagined employee experience to be a formidable option. Leadership available to assist employees during the pandemic crisis can create stronger bonds between employees and the companies they work for.

Safety And Security Still A Major Factor For Pandemic Employee Experience

The second wave of COVID-19 is a serious cause for concern when it comes to the overall pandemic employee experience. Daily new case averages reported in October hovered around 50,000 to 70,000. 

The second wave has increased these daily new case numbers as high as 280,500. That’s per day.

Business leaders need to be cognisant of employee COVID safety and security concerns. To mitigate employee COVID safety and security concerns, compassionate leadership and a calm, unwavering optimism must be conveyed by leadership. It is a delicate balance between the reality of the pandemic and confidence the business will persevere.

Strong Bonds And Relationships Are Key For Improved Employee Experience

Focusing on the business comes natural for business leaders. But shifting that inward focus outward to employees can make a positive impact on the overall employee experience during the pandemic, as well as post-pandemic.

The strong bonds and relationships that businesses have nurtured since the beginning of the pandemic are carrying forward. Business leaders can learn from this when it comes to customer experience. 

By building an employee experience and company culture, aiming to enhance employee acknowledgement and employee engagement can make big time gains in the space of retention. This is a clear call to action for leadership to take social capital within their companies a top priority.

Business leaders can accomplish improved employee experience goals by cultivating trust and employee relationships. For example, leadership within businesses large and small can utilize the Trust Quotient, developed by Charles H. Green.

This is a simple equation for boosting trust among employees, relying on four main components: Credibility, Reliability, Intimacy, and Self-Orientation.

Employee relationships, specifically employee-to-employee relationships, is another important focus for improving pandemic employee experience. This, however, is a challenge, since many employees are without the in-office environment. But there have been wins for businesses via remote work networking events and remote happy hours.

Investing in those essential employee relationships, even if they are nurtured remotely, can sustain a positive workforce during and post-pandemic. It may even strengthen a company long-term. 

Ideas that will be foundational to employee-to-employee relationships will come directly from employees. Leaders should listen closely and take a bottom up approach for success.

Re-Imagining The Pandemic Employee Experience May Build Better Companies

Business leaders currently focusing on improving employee experience during the COVID pandemic may find increased retention, productivity, and efficiency. This only builds better companies, and the long term effects could equate to increased revenue.

Leadership needs to watch the job market carefully in their respective industries. Growth comes in different forms and don’t be complacent to the fact that employees will be actively searching for new jobs. Especially now that jobs are essentially borderless due to remote working.

Focusing on employee experience during the pandemic can catapult your company toward success, both short-term and long-term. Is your leadership taking a proactive approach to improve the pandemic employee experience?