Why you’ll see ’employee experience’ in job titles this year

Professionals involved in staffing—including employment engagement and retention—increasingly are using the term in descriptions and titles. What does it mean, though?

The rise of the employee experience is the next big topic in human resources.

Try this experiment. Go to LinkedIn and type in “employee experience” in the search bar. A recent searched revealed:

  • 1,850 people with “employee experience” in their title;
  • 1,911 with “employee experience” in their profile;
  • 2,220 jobs are available with the term “employee experience” in the title
  • 3,890 results appear for LinkedIn posts with the term “employee experience”
  • Six groups with “employee experience” in the name; the most popular one has 879 members.

More and more HR professionals are changing their titles to include this new term, and it seems that senior HR leaders in reputable companies are leading the way. Here are several examples:

What is employee experience?

Employee experience is the sum of the perceptions employees have about their interactions with the organization in which they work. These perceptions drive how employees feel about their work and how much effort they put into their job. The employee experience determines how effective your company is at attracting, engaging and retaining workers.

Is ‘human resources’ outdated?

When you think about it, “human resources” seems antiquated and not politically correct. Are employees really the company’s resources? “Human resources” is a corporate term to specify the different contributors needed for a company to produce a product or service.

When viewed as a cog in the machine of corporate gains, “human resources” doesn’t do a good job of describing employees. After all, companies comprise an array of people who produce value for customers. It’s your people who ultimately drive the company’s success.

‘Employee experience’ is trending

Google has a nifty tool to show how popular a term is on the search engine. Google Trends enables you to see the relative interest in a term over the past five years. If you do a search on Google Trends for the term “employee experience,” you will see a 140 percent rise in interest by comparing the average popularity value of 35 in 2011 with 85 toward the end of 2016.

Google’s description of “interest over time” is tricky. Google explains: “Numbers represent search interest relative to the highest point on the chart for the given region and time. A value of 100 is the peak popularity for the term. A value of 50 means that the term is half as popular. Likewise, a score of 0 means the term was less than 1 percent as popular as the peak.”

If you compare it against interest in “employee engagement” you will see that “employee experience” has some distance to go to catch up. Nevertheless, the trend in interest for “employee experience” is climbing.

The employee experience revolution

Are we seeing the a major mindset shift when it comes to employees? As the global economy grows and competition becomes more intense, the war for talent will only intensify. Attracting, retaining and engaging top talent will be the key advantage successful companies use to win in this era, and it all starts with creating an amazing employee experience.

If you are in HR, will you be replacing “human resources” with “employee experience” in your title? Did you do so already? Why?

A version of this article first appeared on the DecisionWise blog.

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