Arne Barends, Founder and CEO
The latest research by Europe’s largest provider of employee feedback solutions Effectory showed that more than half of the employees surveyed across Europe were disengaged at work. Effectory’s employee engagement data also revealed that high levels of engagement increase customer-centricity by 81 percent, employee performance by 79 percent and alignment with organizational goals by 76 percent. Arne Barends, CEO and co-founder of Effectory firmly believes that employee engagement requires attention at the board level as a key strategic performance indicator (KPI). In an interview with HR Tech Outlook, Barends elaborates on why he thinks that employee engagement boosts agility, productivity, and high performing work cultures along with the ways to achieve it.
What, according to you, are the challenges that firms’ leaders face while establishing communication with their employees? How does Effectory help them overcome those obstacles?
The problem that business leaders face is two-fold—timing and impact. The employee engagement industry has developed in recent years because annual surveys have provided HR leaders with big data insights into the topics and issues most pertinent to their employees. However, simply conducting an employee engagement survey is not the answer to all workforce issues and disengagement. A survey alone cannot drive engagement unless a listening landscape is created that enables timely dialogues between leaders and employees. Many start-up firms focus largely on the technology side, seeking only to incorporate the latest features in their software solutions for gathering and analyzing employee feedback. Unfortunately, when it comes to conducting employee engagement surveys, little focus is dedicated to the impact of such solutions. Effectory with its action-oriented employee feedback solutions across the entire employee experience helps organizations to improve their performance, engagement, and agility.
Elaborate on Effectory’s employee engagement solutions to help businesses grow by enabling a productive workforce.
With more than 20 years of experience of working with business leaders, we have long argued that building an employee engagement tool that focuses on gathering, analyzing, and reporting of data is not sufficient. Rather, the most important aspect is to create actual impact on individual employees, and at team and organizational levels. Effectory’s employee engagement tools focus on action-oriented and highly interactive personalized reports that provide guidance tailored to the needs of each employee. We support managed rollouts for large-scale and complex employee listening strategy, and, at the same time, offer seamlessly integrated do-it-yourself (DIY) tooling for the quick surveys that companies may want to launch.
The internal team structure of every enterprise differs. How do Effectory’s tools manage to turn employee engagement surveys and feedback into performance growth for such independent organizations and their departments?
We have developed our products keeping in mind that team dynamics vary from one business to another, and even across business units and different office locations. Smart analysis carried out by our tools automatically detects these differing patterns and highlights the disparate factors that drive performance for each department and compares team performances against relevant benchmarks. Consequently, individuals and teams can be motivated and encouraged to focus where the scope for improvement is most notable.
Security and privacy are the most important aspect for any organization. How do Effectory’s products ensure the protection of its client’s data?
We, at Effectory, understand that technological developments along with the increase in automation bring legal implications with itself regarding employees’ data security and privacy. Our European foothold provides us a strong foundation for data privacy. We pride ourselves in setting the industry standards for data protection, being ISO 27001 certified and fully GDPR compliant. Our development and legal teams ensure that all the products adhere to the data privacy rules and regulations that have been laid out to safeguard the user’s data.
What, do you think, sets you apart from other solution providers that are also working in the employee engagement and feedback landscape?
I believe it is the human side of our technology that sets us apart from others and even drives our clients to work with us. We are driven by our tech and touch approach in delivering a promising and effective employee engagement solution. The honest and professional implementation of our products alongside a comprehensive digital support database makes the real difference between impactful and failed feedback projects.
If your company wants to become more agile and improve performance, Employee Engagement might very well be your hidden key driver
Our engagement experts also tailor the content of the surveys according to the target audiences. We align client stakeholder expectations and feedback goals with the customer’s organizational goals, thereby helping the clients to manage not only their HR processes but also the business processes.
Lastly, describe your partnerships and the approach you take to implement your employee engagement solutions to assist your clients.
We follow a three-step strategy to improve our market-leading feedback tools. Firstly, we aim to garner commitment across the client’s organizations. Secondly, we facilitate knowledge and skill transfer for employees and teams to act on the feedback, and thirdly, we fully integrate the tools within the business so that they are effectively adopted by each individual. These three steps make a huge difference in a feedback program reaching an eventful result or a mediocre outcome. By shifting our focus to the employee engagement tools in combination with these three points, we create an effective engagement strategy with and for our clients.