Viva People Science Industry Trends: Technology

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This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: New blog articles in Microsoft Community Hub.

Welcome to the second edition of Microsoft Viva People Science industry trends, where the Viva People Science team shares what we learn from our close work with customers across a range of different industries. Drawing on data spanning over 150 countries, 10 million employees, and millions of survey comments, we learn the unique employee experience challenges and best practices for each industry.


In today’s blog, @AdrianaDuqueHughesPhD , Alice Wastag, and I share our insights on the technology industry.


Despite significant challenges this past year, employee engagement in the technology industry has been resilient and continues to outpace global averages. However, we have seen a slight decline in engagement since its peak in mid-2022 in the context of economic uncertainty, industry disruption, and layoffs. This has had an impact on engagement—and now, employees are calling on leaders to do more to inspire confidence in the future.


Our research shows that there are three key challenges impacting the employee experience in the technology industry. These are:


1. Job security concerns. After a period of significant growth and hiring in 2021, mass layoffs disrupted the technology sector in late 2022 and into 2023. Those who survive layoffs often feel the strain of greater workloads, have lingering questions about the decision making process, and feel dissatisfied with company communications. Although the industry has been reenergized due to developments in AI, job security and future company prospects continue to be top concerns we see in employee surveys in the industry.


2. Career disruption. With fewer available jobs, workers face an increased likelihood of stagnation in their roles and reduced opportunities for skill building and upward career progression. Greater automation and the emergence of AI as a top industry priority add pressure for employees to quickly upskill or reskill to stay relevant.


3. Managing hybrid work effectively. Mid-2023 marked the end of fully remote work for many knowledge employees, as CEOs called workers back to the office, either partially or fully. In some cases, these announcements were made after employees had been assured there was no plan or intention to go back to commuting daily or several times a week. Return to office mandates have led to attrition in many cases and come at the expense of losing valuable and diverse talent.


As a People Science team, we recommend focusing on three areas to improve the employee experience in this industry:


1. Generate confidence about the future prospects of the organization.


• Leaders must maintain frequent, open, and transparent communications about company decisions, especially with difficult announcements that affect employees (even sharing that there is nothing to share yet helps build trust)
• Be clear about the organization’s strategy, goals, as well as metrics that will be used to measure success
• Clarify how future organizational success will translate to improved opportunities for employees


Employees who strongly agree that they are excited about the future of their company are 69% more likely to be engaged at work than those who are not.


2. Integrate career progression and internal mobility into the company culture.


• Show new employees, and frequently remind existing workers, how to access internal mobility and skill building opportunities
• Incorporate goals around skill building, project rotations, and other developmental experiences into employees’ goals or OKRs (Objectives and Key Results)
• Nudge employees to evolve their career through career weeks, internal vacancy announcements, and learning opportunities
• Celebrate internal moves and share stories that show both the company and the employee’s role in finding a new internal job
• Showcase stories of internal non-linear careers built on experiences that build a variety of skills in different roles, instead of focusing on advancing vertically through narrow career paths and title progression


Organizations that support internal mobility retain employees for up to twice as long.


3. Create engaging experiences for employees around moments that matter rather than mandating in-office work.


Research shows that allowing employees to choose where and when they work makes them more productive and engaged than adhering to a strict office schedule. Team performance can also benefit from remote work, as team collaboration software enables people to work together across time zones and during their preferred working hours, involving more than just those colleagues who can travel to a conference room at a given time. Even though remote work helps improve performance, engagement, and wellbeing, people often want to connect with their colleagues in person as well. Recent Microsoft research found three specific moments that benefit the most from in-person interactions: strengthening team cohesion, onboarding, and kicking off a project. The key is to provide flexibility and foster inclusion in hybrid and distributed teams.


• Instead of blanket scheduled hybrid work mandates (e.g. 3 fixed days in office for all), create a flexible work culture that empowers individuals and teams to intentionally decide what works for them, to achieve personal wellbeing, team cohesion, and goal attainment
• Establish clear company and team guidelines to inform flexible work, for example, specify which tasks can be performed from any place, within security and data protection guidelines, and which decisions must be taken together, either in-person or through virtual workplace technology
• Foster employee connection by intentionally organizing virtual and in-person events, such as team-building activities, in-person training, onboarding events, project kick-offs, and coordinated time together in local offices
• Create an inclusive environment where every worker has access to opportunities regardless of their work location or working hours – and encourage switching off to achieve work-life balance


Employees who have positive relationships with their immediate team members report better wellbeing than those with poor relationships. They also report higher productivity and are less likely to change employers. Focus on creating experiences that help people build relationships without losing out on the productivity and wellbeing benefits of flexible and remote work.


Leave a comment below to let us know if this resonates and what you are seeing with your employees in this industry. A downloadable one-page summary is also available with this blog. Be sure to share with your colleagues and leaders who may find it helpful.


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LinkedIn's 2023 Workplace Learning Report
In the Office, It’s All About Moments That Matter (
Great Expectations: Making Hybrid Work Work (
Hybrid Work Is Just Work. Are We Doing It Wrong? (

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