How to Build a Work Environment Your Employees Will Love

How an employee perceives both their job and employer is critical – it not only attracts new talent but helps retain the valuable workforce you already have in place. Yet measuring employee satisfaction isn’t as straight forward as obtaining a rating on scale. Instead, its measured through a combination of interactions with fellow colleagues, systems, processes, and rewards, as well as the physical space they work in – all of this equating to your employee’s level of satisfaction.

Since most of today’s organizations have too many technology platforms or tools to learn, and not enough time, a major part of increasing an employee’s satisfaction level is tied back to simplifying the technology experience. If employees are bogged down doing mundane tasks, then they are missing out on opportunities to contribute to the overall vision and strategy of the organization. Or they use their personal time, leading to burnout and frustration. Both are situations that might cause them to seek work elsewhere. Here are four tips to help your organization build a work environment your employees will love:

  1. Gather experience data you can respond to
  2. Provide the right applications, at the right time
  3. Use corporate cards to build employee sentiment and trust
  4. Leverage best practices to increase employee satisfaction

 

Gather experience data you can respond to

A simple and easy way to get real-time feedback from your workforce is to survey employees to better understand their needs, pinpoint critical gaps, and prioritize where to take action on key areas of the workplace experience. By prioritizing acute needs and taking swift action to ensure your employees are set up for success, you can begin gathering the experiential data you need to start addressing their problems, such as:

  • Mindset and well-being
  • Communication and collaboration
  • Enablement and serving customers
  • Environmental health and safety
  • Tools and processes

 

Provide the right applications, at the right time

There’s a tendency in business to make things too complicated. While this isn’t on purpose (companies grow, acquire, and change) simple business processes can become even more complex. By providing state-of-the-art systems and tools for managing daily activities – such as managing travel booking, expense reimbursement, purchasing card reconciliation, and invoice payment – you can build a positive employee experience that reduces the likelihood an employee will leave. And since these applications can be used on the go, you can also ensure employees will be compliant with policies and procedures, satisfying your employees and organization from the get-go.

 

Use corporate cards to build employee sentiment and trust

Employees can get frustrated from having to front business expenses on their personal card, which in turn can lead to higher levels of anxiety and lower levels of organizational trust.

One way your organization can start making amends is to improve corporate card adoption. By trusting your workforce with corporate cards, you can empower your employees to spend money within corporate policies, so they don’t have to worry about using personal funds or validating the money they spent. Card usage makes it easier for employees to:

  • Complete expense reports and itemize expenses
  • Reduce receipts and out of pocket burdens
  • Spend less time creating and submitting expense reports
  • Improve back-office audits and approval processes
  • Ensure their spend is easy to track and validate

See how your organization compares to benchmarks within your industry by reviewing the Card Adoption chart below, then decide what you can do to increase corporate card adoption if your organization deems it necessary.

Credit card adoption rates by industry

(click to enlarge)

 

Leverage best practices to increase employee satisfaction

Once you’ve incorporated the basics above, your organization can start implementing the following best practices to increase employee satisfaction over time, and ensure your employees are supported at work:

1. Keep it simple and remove the guesswork: With automation, your organization can use built-in functionalities to remove unnecessary work, drive compliance, and automate workflows to reduce time spent creating reports.

Here are some ways to get started:

  • Integrate travel and expense
  • Tie expense types to merchant codes 
  • Use audit rules and reason codes to passively correct and control behaviors
  • Enable email reminders to drive actions in timely fashion
  • Set up pre-authorized requests to eliminate the need to maintain outside processes

2. Collect feedback: Improving processes also includes surveying your workforce, so you can get direct feedback on employee experience gaps. For T&E processes in general, you can use this feedback to:

  • Update configurations
  • Review policy requirements
  • Update employee trainings
  • Prospect new tools for increased satisfaction

3. Provide user support where they need it most: Providing your employees with a 24/7 support team to answer their questions can help guide your employees through the travel and expense experience, ultimately boosting compliance along with reducing user errors, frustration, and time spent reclassifying accounting entries.

4. Use highly rated mobile apps to simplify process for travelers and approvers: Travelers and approvers no longer need to be tied to a desk to gain the benefits of an automated system. Besides using mobile apps to reduce data entry time and increase data entry accuracy, you can also use them to:

  • Provide simplified mileage entries
  • Allow users to submit or approve reports and invoices
  • Alert users to flight changes – delays, gate changes, or cancellations
  • Download and store maps
  • Find restaurants
  • Get seat alerts
  • Track receipts
  • Tie expense reports to ride share provider apps

5. Ensure employees understand the why’s and how’s of your corporate travel policy: Most users don’t want to do the wrong thing; but if they don’t know how to do the right thing, they become frustrated and confused. By ensuring training is delivered regularly and the materials provided are accurate, you create a more educated user who will, in turn, feel less frustrated and more invested in the process.

Create and deliver timely training on both travel policy and travel tools by:

  • Reviewing all documentation on an annual basis to ensure it’s up to date and matches policy and corporate requirements.
  • Delivering training to all new hires and hold refresher training yearly to ensure employees know what to do and why.
  • Using report data and user feedback to identify targeted training by individual, group, or corporate wide to drive compliance and satisfaction with the program.

 

Help your employees help themselves

Employees are the greatest asset for every organization, and typically the most expensive to replace. Ensuring job efficiency and satisfaction can have limitless positive impacts on your employees’ experience, keeping them happy, productive, and focused on value-added responsibilities.

For more tips on how to increase employee satisfaction, take our quiz to see if your expense program optimally supports your teams.

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