Moments That Matter in the Employee Experience

Man sits at a desk with a coworker and looks contemplatively at a tablet

Moments that matter in the employee experience include important employee lifecycle stages (interviewing, onboarding, offboarding, etc.) and all of the everyday moments in between.

From when a potential employee first applies for a position at a company to their last day on the job, the employee experience (EX) is made up of a variety of “moments that matter” — moments that shape employee engagement, productivity, well-being, and turnover and retention

Employee-experience-focused organizations pay attention to these moments to measure and optimize the overall experience to improve outcomes for employees, customers, and the entire enterprise. 

Keep reading to find out what some of the top moments that matter in the employee experience are and for pointers on how your team can start measuring your company’s EX during these instances. 

What Do We Mean by “Moments That Matter” in the Employee Experience, Anyway?

Gartner and McKinsey take a similar approach to defining the moments that matter throughout the employee lifecycle — as key milestones and touchpoints that have the power to influence the workforce experience. Per McKinsey, these moments, also referred to as “moments of truth,” have the potential to “create a disproportionate uplift in experience” or, on the flipside, are made up of “pain points that can be addressed.” 

Gartner’s Aaron McEwan, Vice President and Advisory Leader, says they’re moments that have a “significant potential to impact employee experience positively or negatively.”

These include moments that the employer has a direct influence over as well as moments that are outside of the employer’s control, such as the birth of a team member’s child or a death in the family. 

Top Moments that Matter in the Employee Experience, Examples

Here are some of the top moments that matter in the employee experience, moments that are worth monitoring and using as opportunities to check in with employees to see how they’re doing.

#1: Important employee lifecycle stages

  • The job application process
  • The interview process
  • Onboarding
  • Employee learning and development 
  • Employment anniversaries
  • The offboarding process/exit interview

#2: Everyday moments in between major employee lifecycle stages

  • Day-to-day interactions with managers, colleagues, customers, senior leadership, and direct reports
  • Company-wide changes
  • Quarterly check-ins/surveys
  • When employees reach out to IT for support
  • When workers have ideas about how the company can innovate
  • When team members encounter points of friction on the job

#3: Personal moments inside and outside of work

  • Job transfers
  • Getting a new manager, senior leader, or department
  • Receiving a promotion, bonus, or raise
  • When employees are passed over for a promotion or raise
  • Having a baby, taking leave, or experiencing a death in the family

Measuring Employee Experience Moments That Matter

There are a range of employee listening strategies that can help organizations identify what matters to employees, including:

  • Conducting recurring employee engagement surveys
  • Making always-on surveys available to employees to provide their feedback during the moments that matter the most to them; these can be embedded in the regular flow of work, such as on a company’s intranet or employee app or as a QR code placed in the employee break room or where employees clock in
  • Capturing and analyzing direct employee feedback and indirect employee feedback and signals, such as data gathered via social media conversations, helpdesk tickets, performance reviews, PTO usage patterns, and more

For EX professionals, paying attention to these moments and monitoring EX KPIs like sentiment, well-being, belonging, satisfaction, and engagement, can help uncover insights about how employees feel and what matters to them during these employee lifecycle stages. McEwan adds that these moments “enable action” because they shed light on what organizations can do to improve the employee experience

Gartner researchers have found that less than one-third of employees feel that their HR teams understand their wants and needs. However, increasingly organizations are working towards paying attention to these moments that matter — 16% already have efforts in place to do so and 56% of HR leaders are exploring identifying moments that matter for their employees. 

Measuring the employee experience can help organizations understand what’s driving important business KPIs, such as employee turnover and retention and customer satisfaction and retention. Brands that have tools in place for measuring the employee experience in real time, such as employee feedback surveys and AI-powered text analytics and speech analytics, can even begin to predict employees at risk of churn and intervene when there’s still time to turn things around. 

If you’re ready to step up your efforts, check out this guide to get started measuring employee experience.

Looking to improve your organization’s employee experience to drive engagement, retention, and other business outcomes? Meet with a Medallia expert to create a world class employee experience.