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What is it, why it’s important and how to deliver it.

What is it?

So, what exactly is the Employee Experience? There is no doubt that the employee experience or EX, within a company, right now, should be front and centre of any business that’s looking to succeed. Chucking some fruit in your office and maybe a pool table simply isn’t enough anymore (although they are welcome additions). Nowadays businesses need to look deeper at their Employee Experience (EX) and make sure they are offering great value for their employees to ensure they can attract but just as importantly retain great talent. Essentially EX is: How your organisation shapes the way people work and live, from productivity to flexibility, wellbeing, learning and everything in between.

Why it’s important

For years now a real buzz word in the IT space has been “Digital Transformation.” You cannot go to a single conference and not be told about how important this is – in fact there are entire conferences dedicated to “Digital Transformation” and the pandemic enabled a bunch of businesses, whether they liked it or not, to go through very rapid digital transformation that previously could have taken them years to achieve. But perhaps one area that got left behind was the transformation of the people using the new tools that were put in place. It all happened at such a pace that a lot of businesses went into survival mode, however with the world and businesses now re-opening, organisations and their leaders need to help their people adjust to greater change at very high speeds. It’s now so important that EX must be a critical focus for HR, IT, and business leaders. EX is much broader than simple engagement and must now sit front and centre of a business, it spans ALL business functions and touches all issues. We’ve seen some large organisations actually rename their HR department to be “Employee Experience” Adobe and Airbnb to name but two. 

So, EX is front and centre for a lot of organisations and with the ability for businesses to now attract talent from anywhere in the world employees are realising their skills are valued and the job market is very much in their favour. Being able to attract talent and then just as importantly keeping them is of the utmost importance and the way to do this is to nail down your EX.

How to deliver great EX

As with everything in business, technology obviously plays a large role in the EX, without the right tech in place companies can’t get insights into employee sentiment, they also can’t personalise experiences and relevant development opportunities or support employees at scale. If we look at the operational maturity of a company in regard to their EX we can see that the companies who are very mature, or further along in their journey tend to have tools which encompass people analytics, advanced knowledge tools and adaptive learning which are linked and integrated into their everyday workflows.

So a little over a year ago Microsoft entered the market with an EX platform to help companies achieve their goals in this area. Microsoft Viva is an entire employee experience platform that is fully integrated into Teams and this is one of its biggest advantages. It means that companies can currently use Microsoft Viva across 4 different pillars which focus on

  1. Curating communication content across your organisation to keep employees engaged with Microsoft Viva Connections.
  2. Gain data driven people insights from the personal to the manager to the leadership level with Microsoft Viva Insights.
  3. Turning content into useable knowledge with Microsoft Viva Topics.
  4. Empower people with a centre for employee learning in Microsoft 365 with Microsoft Viva Learning.

With the above 4 pillars Microsoft are offering a really comprehensive EX platform and one of the key advantages of it is it sits right within Teams which is where a lot of organisations’ employees spend most of their day. So it becomes a really seamless and integrated part of your work without taking your attention away from your day to day job.


So, to summarise Employee Experience platforms are here to stay. They are extremely important and hopefully they will keep getting better and better and there will be more integrations with other areas of the employee experience that are important. Microsoft have some new pillars coming to Microsoft Viva this year that look really exciting so more info coming on those in the next blog.