Every manufacturing company has an employee value proposition -- EVP for short -- whether they choose to call it by that familiar HR buzzword or not. Because every manufacturing company needs skilled workers and has therefore created a bundle of attractive employment "hooks" -- pay, benefits, training, advancement opportunity, flextime, culture, corporate values, etc. -- to offer its workers in exchange for their contributions in the form of knowledge, skills and energy.
Unfortunately, a lot of companies don't put their EVP to good use. In fact, more than half of companies fail in this regard, according to a new survey by Towers Watson, the New York-based global consulting and professional services company.
See Also: Workforce Reading List
In its research, Towers Watson found that only 43% of the 207 large and midsize companies it polled have a long-term plan in place to fully exploit their employee value proposition. Moreover, companies that do have such plans in place are five times more likely to have a highly engaged workforce and twice as likely to report financial performance significantly above their competitors that do not put their EVPs to effective use.
"What we're looking for are companies that really get in there and make an effort to formally shape their employees' work experience," says Kathryn Yates, global leader of communication at Towers Watson. "And what we've found is that for many companies, the EVP remains a hidden gem that isn't being utilized to its fullest extent."
The Big Payback
Taking your company's EVP to a higher level entails a good deal of planning and work, but the payoff can be substantial, as the data cited previously shows.
The work it entails includes formalizing and integrating the EVP: developing an implementation roadmap; involving senior leaders in the process; establishing connections and linkages between rewards and talent management programs -- competencies, hiring processes, learning programs, career paths; training and rewarding managers and holding them accountable; clearly communicating the program at regular intervals to the entire organization; and delivering consistently on the pledges set forth in the EVP.
Yates says an effective EVP "shapes, aligns and integrates the whole employee experience" -- from culture, mission and values to rewards and job fulfillment -- and that it helps companies fully define their "brand" as it relates to their workforce -- for both current workers and prospective ones.
|Read about two recent books that delve into topics related to the employee value proposition at iw.com/workforce-reading-list.|
"Getting to that level where you're getting the most out of your EVP is definitely hard work, but once you do get there, you've got all the tools you need to recruit and engage the talent," Yates says. "Our study shows that it's worth it because we see strong correlations with financial performance. So I encourage companies that haven't done this to get started as soon as possible. Put some cross-functional teams together and take a deep look at the experience you're offering and what you expect from your employees in return."