Home Digital Transformation and Digital Adoption What is the Digital Employee Experience?
Digital Transformation and Digital Adoption

What is the Digital Employee Experience?

What is the Digital Employee Experience?

Employee experience has been climbing up the agenda rapidly in recent years as organizations look to tackle the ‘Great Resignation’ and provide their employees with a great experience, whilst also ensuring they are motivated and productive. 

A piece of that puzzle is looking at digital friction points for employees and their use of digital tools; Digital Employee Experience (DEX). 

Gartner describes DEX as “a strategy that focuses on the technology experience that companies offer to employees and is a critical contributor to overall employee experience.”

They predict that “By 2025, more than 50% of IT organizations will use digital employee experience to prioritize and measure digital initiative success, which is a significant increase from fewer than 5% in 2021.” 

There has been huge investments in digital technology in the workplace, and leaders will now have to consider beyond the application selection to assess the digital adoption of said technology. Is it being used, is it making employees’ jobs easier, and is it making them more productive? 

Why is the digital employee experience on the rise?

According to Statista, the average number of SaaS applications used by organizations worldwide between 2015 and 2021 rose from 8 to 110. The consumer mindset of ‘there is an app for that’ has trickled into the workplace and led to a surge in the use of digital tools. Rather an overwhelming increase, don’t you think? 

In a recent survey by Userlane, as part of our State of Digital Adoption Report, the figures suggest that this surge has left employees feeling frustrated and confused. Almost four in five businesses (78%) have seen increased software support queries since shifting to remote and hybrid working. This is a significant DEX issue.

Yet, in the current landscape, it appears that organizations are not successful in ensuring new technology is being implemented fully. Just one in five (22%) business leaders are happy with the success of their software initiatives every time. A further quarter (24%) say that software implementations meet their objectives less than half of the time.

Why is it important to get the digital employee experience right?

A large majority of respondents (88%) agreed that being able to use software without frustration is key to both their happiness at work and productivity. 

In the midst of the ‘Great Resignation’, this is a big red flag. By delivering an excellent DEX, an organization can experience many positive outcomes. Gartner, once again, provides detail on what those outcomes could look like:

  • Increased employee engagement and discretionary effort
  • Positive talent retention and recruitment outcomes
  • Increased satisfaction and effectiveness with applications used for work
  • Organic adoption of digital workplace applications
  • Acceleration of new ways of working
  • Leverage of business-led development (reducing shadow IT)
  • Simplified application selection aligned with employee needs

Understanding your employees’ technology needs

To reach those outcomes, the first step is to always understand your employees’ needs and requirements. 

In a recent interview with the founding members of the PwC digital enablement team, we explored how organizations can achieve a digital adoption mindset when introducing new technology. Their best practice is very much guided by the concept of considering the people and organizational aspects. 

“If employees only have their first interaction with the system one month prior to go-live, then they are much less likely to get excited about it. If you build this enablement journey with your stakeholders over the duration of the project, you will be able to build curiosity and excitement amongst users.”

So communication and involvement is key, and offers the ability to build excitement amongst employees – they can start to look forward to new technology being introduced, instead of being overwhelmed by another tool in their growing tech stack. 

How Digital Adoption is an essential piece of the DEX puzzle

Digital adoption is the process of getting employees to understand, accept and maximize the value of software applications in order to make the company more productive and create a better working experience for all. If digital tools have high engagement, employees feel confident using them and are more productive; then you are able to contribute to a better DEX. 

In turn, you can realize these benefits: 

Free up precious time

Time better spent on working towards company goals, or even time to take 5 and look after their wellbeing. 

Empower employees to be self-sufficient

Reduce the need to rely on a ticketing system, and reduce the pressure on IT support teams. 

Meet your employees’ tech needs

Understand where your employees are struggling and how best you can provide them with tech that meets their needs. 

Download our latest infographic to discover how digital adoption can shape the employee experience:

How digital adoption shapes the employee experience

How can a Digital Adoption Platform help?

A Digital Adoption Platform (DAP), like Userlane, can eliminate software frustrations and digital friction, and you can make sure that your people are making the most of technology. Improving their work outputs and overall digital employee experience. 

Engage your people. 

Interactive step-by-step guides lead users through common tasks and provide intuitive on-demand assistance. Announcements and surveys mean you can promote new features directly in your app, and you can tailor your communications so you deliver it to the right people, at the right time. 

Connect your learning material. 

With Userlane Assistant, interactive content and support resources are always present to your users. You can create a knowledge base and integrate existing support channels directly in the software applications and provide your users with real-time support, without having to leave the applications.

Learn about your users. 

Assess the success of your digital efforts and objectives by evaluating how people across different audience segments interact with your software. Stay on top of the engagement trends by tracking the individual performance of your guides and announcements. Iterate quickly and make better targeted decisions that will improve user experience.


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About the author:
The Userlane team brings you digital adoption insights, product updates, and plenty of onboarding and engagement advice for user-centric businesses.