18 Mar The success of your practice is a team effort!
In today’s frantic market, and with increasing competition within the industry, the demands and expectations of clients are becoming ever greater. To attract and retain clients, investment advisors must not only demonstrate their expertise and interpersonal skills, but also offer a unique and memorable client experience.
In this regard, wealth management professionals must surround themselves with a competent and mobilized team. It’s a simple statement, but it begs the question: How do you surround yourself with such a team? According to Yanie Bernier, Director of Employee Experience at Croesus, the solution is to rely on the employee experience itself, and this is all the truer during the current pandemic, which calls for continuously adapting management practices.
What is the employee experience?
Throughout their career within a company, employees will experience a wide range of emotions and have many interactions with their employer, their immediate supervisor, and their peers. The employee experience is employees’ overall perception of all the emotions and interactions they experience on a daily basis. While specific to each company, the employee experience is based on three drivers: management style, human resource management practices, and working conditions.
Management style encompasses how teams are mobilized, openness to others, and the communication skills of leaders. Managers must have good interpersonal skills to foster an inviting and inclusive culture based on mutual respect and trust.
Human resources management practices guide the integration of new employees, departure management, talent recognition, compensation policies, benefits, equity between the various stakeholders, performance measures, and skills development. Each of these elements can positively or negatively influence the perception of employees and encourage them to stay on the job or, conversely, reconsider their future with the company.
Working conditions are defined, in particular, by the atmosphere, interpersonal relations, the layout of personal and common spaces, the tools and technologies available, working hours, and the various actions taken to improve well-being and promote fitness.
Why is the employee experience so important?
Attracting and managing talent is a critical process, since recruiting talented employees is much more expensive than implementing retention measures. Beyond the financial aspect, the departure of an employee always implies a loss of know-how and expertise specific to the company.
The employee experience reinforces employee engagement and creates an environment in which employees feel good and want to grow. This management style also has a direct impact on the client experience. Indeed, to meet clients’ expectations and offer them quality service, employees must first be happy.
Firms that adopt an employee experience perspective benefit in several ways:
- 5 to 15% higher productivity
- 20% decrease in absenteeism
- 30% increase in client satisfaction
- Low turnover rate
- Improved ability to attract employees
- Reduction in the turnover rate of qualified personnel1
How do you maintain a positive employee experience in the context of teleworking?
The new reality of working remotely is forcing administrators to adapt their management practices to support employees during this particularly difficult period. Interactions with colleagues are less frequent, employees are more likely to feel isolated, and this feeling may ultimately lead to lower motivation and engagement.
To maintain a positive employee experience, it is necessary to ensure that corporate objectives are clear and precise and that employees feel supported in their daily lives. Above all, it is important to recognize each employee’s efforts so that everyone feels involved in achieving common goals. Setting up an online chat room, sending corporate gifts, organizing group activities, or creating virtual happy hours are just a few ideas to maintain and strengthen ties remotely.
Whether in the office or teleworking, the most important thing is to be authentic and consistent of purpose, otherwise all efforts are in vain. If actions do not follow words, trust between the two parties is undermined.
Resources to help managers
Many resources are available to help managers implement and maintain the employee experience within their companies. For one, surveys are a good starting point for assessing employee and client satisfaction. Not only can surveys be structured around the three drivers of the employee experience, but they also make it possible, indirectly, to gauge the effectiveness of the measures implemented within a company. In fact, many data collection tools exist on the web. Exit interviews can also be used as a way to identify areas for improvement to encourage staff retention, and training can be used as a communication tool to learn more about the subject. Finally, many online resources offer a wealth of useful information, such as the website of the Ordre des conseillers en ressources humaines agréés, or Boostalab, which includes many solutions to help professionals find inspiring and easy-to-use tools.
The advantages of this management approach are undeniable. The relationship between employee and client happiness is directly related to increased revenues and the company’s bottom line. The possibilities for implementing this approach are almost limitless, since strategies and actions can be adapted to team size, budget, and objectives, to name a few. All that remains is to find the formula most suited to the management style adopted, and to remember that behind every great advisor, there’s a dedicated team!
1 Source: L’expérience employé, plus qu’un buzzword : avant tout une philosophie de gestion!, Louise Bourget, CRHA, Revue RH, Volume 23, Number 3, September/October 2020.