For busy HR departments like yours, answering questions (sometimes the same ones over and over again) is probably at, or near, the bottom of your list of important things to do. However, employees keep asking them, especially questions from your international employees about your immigration process.
You’ve made some strides in providing visibility into those processes for your employees, but the questions keep coming. As you move away from a chaotic immigration program, you may want to move towards a more predictable approach for employee communication.
Where do employees currently find answers?
It’s best if they can find them easily. But surprisingly, 40% of corporate users report that they can’t find information they need on the company intranet. So, it’s unlikely that they’ll find information about the status of their own immigration process either.
If your only communication methods are company emails or newsletters, employees may not always get the message. They’re both good vehicles for information but they shouldn’t be the only methods of communication.
Email is still an important business tool, but its limitations are showing.
- Employees don’t always read them because of email overload and fatigue
- Lack of corporate email addresses for temporary employees, freelancers, or independent contractors
- Lack of access to secure email server or Wi-Fi for mobile or remote workers
- Important immigration provider emails end up in caught in spam filters
Newsletters and magazines are colorful, fun, and less formal than emails. But they can involve significant costs, they’re not current (as in hot off the press) and aren’t generally targeted at answering employee questions.
If you want to meet employees where they are, and reduce those questions, you may want to consider investing in this process.
Do you know how well your process is working?
A manual process makes it difficult to manage, track, and assess results on an ongoing basis. The process is lengthy, inefficient, and highly susceptible to data entry errors. Data is lost and access for management and employees is limited, and time-intensive at best.
Using an employee self-service technology is one of the best strategic initiatives that HR can implement to improve communications and productivity across the board. If you don’t already have a platform that provide 24/7 access for employees to communicate with you and each other, consider using some of the best tools on the market to engage employees. And get those questions answered.
How would you like to reduce most of those questions AND track the success of your process?
Communication methods have changed drastically in just the past few years. And they continue to evolve to meet changing needs. But our workforces aren’t keeping pace with those quantum leaps in technology. While email is still prevalent as the primary method of business communications, modern companies are starting to embrace self-service knowledge centers and HR chatbots as secondary channels to reduce friction in the employee experience.
Workforces today are increasingly more remote, tech savvy, – and impatient. Employees are on information overload. It’s estimated that workers receive over one hundred emails each day. A Deloitte study confirms what we already suspect; that today’s employees prefer additional options for communication with you as well as each other.
A better employee communication platform might be the right solution
The Harvard Business Review cited a study conducted by IDC, the Working Council of CIOS, and Reuters, which showed that employees spend an average of 20% of their working hours searching for information necessary to do their jobs effectively.
And of particular interest to immigration process visibility, providing employers mobile and automated channels to connect with employees (rather than waiting for team or attorneys to respond), reduces stress by 2%. That doesn’t sound like a huge amount, but the results show that it reduces revenue loss by over 40%. Now that is a huge amount.
Benefits of newer communication tools
- Centralized channel of communication
- Real-time communication via instant messaging
- Supports information sharing and internal publishing
- Employees can more easily communicate with each other to get questions answered
- Reduction of costs for redundant tasks, i.e., answering the same questions for multiple employees
- HR can focus on strategic initiatives that align with business objectives
- Standardization of processes and information
- Ability to use a variety of mediums for HR to disseminate information – podcasts, videos, webinars
Deloitte research shows that information workers prefer newer communication tools, particularly instant messaging, over more traditional ones like e-mail or team workspaces.
By understanding how your employees prefer to work and developing a change management plan that continually improves visibility for your employees, you can help empower people and culture which lie at the heart of organizational performance and drive both success and failure.
Content in this publication is not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult a Bridge-affiliated partner attorney or another qualified legal professional.