Do You Need A Chief Employee Officer?

“Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don’t want to.”
Richard Branson, Founder and Chairman of Virgin

Have you ever heard the CEO ask the following question – “How can we communicate our strategy more effectively?”. What they are really saying is “How can we better inspire employees to do the things that will help drive our strategy forwards?”.

Yet, it doesn’t take much to find statistics on disengaged employees who report poor workplace experiences.

A new report by Gallup found that only 14% of employees in Australia and New Zealand are engaged in their jobs. An overwhelming 71% are not engaged and as many as 15% are actively disengaged.

A similar report in the United States, shows that employee engagement level is sitting at 34% along with 13% actively disengaged…. a ratio of nearly three engaged workers for every actively disengaged one. Interestingly, this has been the best reported result since 2000.

Why does a high engagement culture matter?

Organisations and teams with higher employee engagement and lower active disengagement perform at higher levels. They realise substantially better customer engagement, higher productivity, better retention, fewer accidents, and higher profitability. Engaged workers also report better health outcomes.

The equation is simple:

An increase in employee engagement leads to increase in business culture which then leads to happy clients and equally important reduced the organisation exposure to employee risk as well as business risk.

Little wonder that Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) today are embracing the term employee engagement as if it were new. It isn’t, of course. What’s new is the recognition that no relationship matters more in business than that between top executives and their employees.

In 2018, speaking at the Australian Rehabilitation Providers Association (ARPA) national conference in Sydney, Dr Marc White, CEO and President of Canada’s Work Wellness and Disability Prevention Institute suggested that “In Australia and around the world, our inability to create psychologically safe workplaces means we are effectively stuck in the Dark Ages of employee engagement”.

So, why would we need a Chief Employee Officer? 

Human Resource (HR) is adopted by many organisations because of its benefits yet it is faced with a difficult job that faces many challenges – People. Human beings are complex and dynamic entities and having to manage people is always going to be tricky.

The human resources department handles many necessary functions of an organisation.  Specifically, it is instrumental in providing labour law compliance, record keeping, hiring and training, compensation, relational assistance and help with handling specific performance issues. These are all critical functions.

Yet, HR is often seen as just an “administration” body, but not as a champion of employee engagement. Today, there are very few organisations where they employ HR people as part of their executive team.

We know that high level of “employee engagement” is a desired outcome by every organisation. But this task needs a champion and they need to sit on the executive team and for this reason, organisations must consider having a Chief Employee Officer (CEO).

It is important to realise that culture starts first with the leader and the executive team. A leader that actively encourages a sense of community and team spirit, and fosters team relationship develops high level engagement.

The Chief Employee Officer:

  • Needs to be the conduit for HR, along with employee communications, plus facilities to support a productive culture and retain top talent.
  • Needs to develop an “ethos” of customer service and employee focus” for employee-facing teams like human resources, IT, finance and other facilities.
  • Needs to unite the different business units of an organisation focused into a cohesive team.
  • Role is to deliver “human-centred” values. In a sense, it would view and treat (potential and current) employees as “internal clients” – “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”.
  • Role is to provide a strategic resource to an organization looking to differentiate itself in a competitive market.

“Remember, that above everything else in your business, your staff should be number 1. If your people are happy and engaged, customers will follow”

Richard Branson, Founder and Chairman of Virgin

How Can We Help you?

Traditional guidance regarding how to defend against employee risks focused primarily on security controls which constrained employee behaviour or detect and punish misbehaviour. While these traditional security measures are necessary, they can result in counterproductive constrains on employees’ actions, their behaviour and trust.

For example: A person that commits insider sabotage is the result of being highly disgruntled, disconnected and feeling unfairly treated by the organisation.

Fortunately, Naked Insider approach to employee risks focuses through the mechanism of “positive incentives”.  Positive incentives complement traditional practices by encouraging employees to act in the interest of the organisation.

Instead of solely focusing on making sure that employees don’t misbehave, Naked Insider helps you to creates a work environment where employees are internally driven to contribute to organisations in a positive way.

Interested in identifying how your organisation can benefit in high level employee engagement, get in touch with Naked insider or contact us +61 2 6282 5554.

Your Next Best Step

If you are keen in addressing the risk from within, but not sure where to start, why not attend our free Insider Threat Worksop. This half day workshop are conducted in most capital cities and are designed to help you understand the best practices that can be implemented to identify and mitigate insider threat within your organisation.

To find out more about our Insider Threat Workshop

Contact Us

if you need some more resource material, download the Insider Threat eBook by Naked Insider completely free of charge. For more information, you can also send them an email at: OR give us a call at: +61 26282-5554.