One of the benefits of working and living in Southern California is the proximity to some amazing attractions, such as Disneyland. My family has bought annual passes to Disneyland for the last several years. While much has been said about the high standards and creative culture that embody the Disney spirit, I am fascinated with another aspect of Disneyland, which I reference in almost all of my talks and speeches: the nature of the curated Disney experience.
It is in this area — the curated experience — that program managers and providers alike can take a page from Walt Disney. This may not be obvious, but it’s the most accessible example of building a customer-focused culture.
Going to Disneyland is a defined experience. From the moment you get out of your car and take the Buzz Lightyear tram to the front entrance, to the time you get back into your car and drive home — very spent physically and financially — you are engaging in the curated experience. This means everything you see, smell, hear or otherwise experience has been carefully designed to immerse you in another world. The Disney team gave thought and careful consideration to every aspect of the park in its development and continued operations.
This is the way you want to look at your contingent program as well. I often advise companies to walk through process flows from the standpoint of the end customer. What is the experience when a newly hired contingent worker first walks into your lobby? How prepared is the receptionist to provide them with information to get them started? Are the forms necessary for onboarding available and clear? What about a pen for filling out those forms? Is the Wi-Fi in your building available to guests, and if so, where would they find the access code or SS ID to login? When they start, what is their experience when walking into the workspace? Is it inviting, re-creating a culture and climate where they feel engaged and appreciated so they can do their best work?
What I recommend program owners do is more than simply map the process, but walk through it. Almost like a secret shopper in a grocery store, start in the parking lot and/or the building as if it was the first time you’ve arrived, taking careful notes of everything you see and hear as well as opportunities to improve. From there, walk through every step of the process that may be experienced by the end customer. This customer can be a candidate, internal user, or outside supplier. It’s meant to develop an understanding and provide opportunities to improve your customers’ experience of working with you.
So often we lose sight of the fact that life is not a process map and people are not squares on a piece of paper. Almost certainly, you will find through this process a number of opportunities to improve the end-users’ experience in working at your facility. And in doing so, you will identify opportunities for cost savings, surprisingly enough, and improve retention. I’ve always said in order to get the best price and best candidates, you need to provide the best client experience. Mapping and creating a curated event for everyone who comes into your building will set you on that path.