In this time of disruption, the top priority for human resources (HR) and businesses is their people. HR leaders across all industries and regions are navigating uncharted territory, with significant changes to personal and professional lives.
Now more than ever, organizations must listen and respond to employees to ensure they feel safe, healthy, informed, engaged, and productive.
HR is no longer about pushing top-down programs to employees; it’s about placing employees experience at the center of every process and decision. We call this human experience management (HXM), and it is extremely relevant during these times of uncertainty. With HXM, organizations can harness intelligent technologies to personalize the user experience, use data to understand how employees feel, and leverage an open ecosystem to tap into a wide range of solutions.
Learning and development has been experiencing an increase in demand for several years and will continue to grow in importance. Forty-six percent of CEOs say reskilling and upskilling are the best way to maintain a workforce that can meet their business needs. In this time of immense change, agility is essential so that organizations can tap into their employees’ talents to quickly pivot to new markets, products, and services. LVMH, for example, transformed its perfume factories to produce hand sanitizer.
Changes in supply chain, developer tools, and where and how we work means that the skills we need are unpredictable. In some cases, the skills needed in a year might not even have a name today. Organizations are looking for learning and development solutions that provide innovative content and tools to engage their employees while enabling them to make changes quickly.
With HXM as our vision, SAP is reimagining learning and development to bring together learning and social content, expert peers, and tested learning paths so organizations can deliver personalized, centralized, and intuitive resources for growth. As we think about user experiences and putting employees first — in addition to ensuring business continuity — learning and development must go beyond checking the box of required classes or certifications, or simply updating skills from a skills database. It should be an ongoing, dynamic, and individualized experience for every single employee.
Instead of leaving it up to employees to seek out their own learning possibilities, reimagined learning and development solutions can provide guidance on how to discover new opportunities to develop and grow. For example, these solutions can recommend learning content that aligns with employees’ performance goals or provide context to help them understand the value of each learning activity they undertake.
The SAP SuccessFactors HXM Suite leverages machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) to create these personalized experiences. These intelligent technologies sift through and analyze enormous amounts of data with great speed and accuracy that manual or traditional processes cannot compete with. In addition to providing personalized learning recommendations, these technologies can also “nudge” employees to take action, so they stay on track with their development plans. For instance, employees can receive suggestions to connect with peers or mentors in their community to help them meet specific career goals, reminders to complete their learning activities, or recommendations to arrange development conversations with their managers.
HXM also encourages an open ecosystem so organizations can take advantage of new innovations and easily integrate the best combination of solutions to make their employees successful. For example, the SAP SuccessFactors ecosystem provides customers access to organizations like Cultivate, which provides an AI-powered leadership development platform for real-time coaching; Centrical PULSE, which uses gamification to engage employees through friendly competition; and Immerse, which enables organizations to use virtual reality in their training exercises.
As organizations leverage these new technologies to improve their learning and development solutions, it is critical to listen to and constantly integrate employee feedback. While many organizations might rely on annual surveys to collect feedback, they are missing the opportunity to capture insights on specific pieces of content or interactions. Instead, HXM encourages pulse surveys that collect in-the-moment feedback and then make iterations and improvements to address those insights.
Providing employees with engaging learning and development plans is beneficial not just for the growth of individual employees, but for teams and organizations as a whole. Continuing to evolve employees’ skills is pertinent for organizations to be successful — especially as they experience significant transformation to their business.
Margit Bauer is a director of Solution Marketing for SAP SuccessFactors Learning and SAP SuccessFactors Onboarding.
Janne Wise is a director of Solution Marketing for SAP SuccessFactors Performance & Goals and SAP SuccessFactors Succession & Development.