Wellbeing is a topic which has been under scrutiny in the media for the past few years, and as such, there has been a huge growth in the number of organisations that have a Learning & Development (L&D) and/or Wellbeing strategy in place.

But how many organisations actually measure the impact that L&D/Wellbeing strategies are having? How many just have these strategies in place to be seen to have them – and simply do not have the time to assess their value or performance? And just how many employees actually understand the role HR should take in their organisation when it comes to Wellbeing related issues?

In a recent survey carried out by Redshift Research on behalf of Bond HR & Payroll Software, it was clear that HR is still overloaded with basic, day to day administration and employee queries. In the first of this four part blog series, Roger Moore, Managing Director, Bond HR & Payroll Software looks at how employee interaction with HR can make L&D and Wellbeing measurable and relevant to the organisation.

Blurred lines

There is no doubt that the role of HR has become increasingly strategic in recent years, from managing administrative duties and legislative changes through to improving the employer and employee relationship. At the same time, L&D strategies and Wellbeing policies have become ever more important, especially in an era of high employment.

Despite these strategic issues, it would seem that HR has been tasked with time consuming admin and answering employee queries – something which could be managed by employees having access to HR information online 24/7. In fact the research showed that only 5% of employees have anytime access to information, which with the rise of remote working and an ever disparate workforce is simply not enough.

Changing role

While HR’s vision is strategic, its perception within the organisation does not reflect the changing role. Our research revealed that 41% of employees have little or no understanding of the role HR plays in the organisation – a disturbing statistic for HR Departments. A third of employees stated that their experience with HR has been negative or very negative when it comes to having their questions answered. HR departments are stretched with administrative duties – yet for an organisation to reap the benefits of key employee retention and development strategies such as L&D and Wellbeing, it is critical that they return to their roots, namely providing support for the employee.

Measuring the effect of the strategy

The research indicates that larger organisations, which have typically deployed effective self-service HR solutions, are able to reduce the employee’s need to call HR with queries.  Providing employees with the ability to view payslips, update personal information, such as bank details, change of address etc, view contracts and benefits online, and source value added services, such as Learning and Development and online appraisals will help to make the online portal the first point of contact for all HR queries, reducing the burden on HR.

But it is also essential to measure the impact of Wellbeing and L&D strategies. How?

Put simply, ask. Asking employees through anonymous surveys and feedback in appraisals is an easy place to start – the employee, particularly in an anonymous survey, will be honest regarding their experience of the strategies in place.

Having an online L&D module which is accessed and completed directly by the employee can also be easily monitored by HR. Tracking who has accessed it, how often and when training modules have been completed is a great place to start, and when used in-line with appraisals can provide valuable insight into the future of the business.