Joanna Ślubowska

Head of HR and SFO, Hycom S.A.

Supernova Award Category: 

Future of Work - Employee Experience

The Organization: 

Hycom, headquartered in Poland, is a professional services company specializing in digital customer experiences. We provide end-to end services, including research and customer journey mapping, application development and maintenance, and strategy consulting. We build customer-centric services and sales solutions that serve millions of customers for major European brands such as Deutsche Telekom, Orange, and Fortum.

The Problem: 

As a services company, we rely on the skills and experience of our consultants, designers, and programmers to develop solutions for clients; these skills are highly sought-after. Qualified programmers, for example, are in high demand on the labor market. Keeping hold of the talent we have is crucial—losing employees means losing knowledge, which means losing the ability to deliver. Our existing programmers understand our codebase and how to work with it; if we hire someone new, it takes weeks or months for them to get up to speed and become productive.

To retain our skilled and experienced employees, we have to take good care of them. A great employee experience is therefore business critical. To provide a positive working environment and keep our people happy, we need to listen to them. We need to understand their needs, expectations, and pain points.

The Solution: 

To better understand how our people feel, we built an Employee Listening Program with Qualtrics EmployeeXM.

We were about to launch this Employee Listening Program when the COVID-19 pandemic hit—bringing with it a new work reality. Due to lockdown measures, all employees had to work remotely. We needed to find ways to stay connected even when we were apart.

That’s when we decided to incorporate Qualtrics’ free Remote Work Pulse into the Employee Listening Program, which enables us to check in with employees on a daily basis. We were able to move extremely fast. We went from the initial idea to implementing the first changes based on employee feedback in just five days.

The Results: 

In addition to the daily pulse surveys during the COVID-19 crisis, the Employee Listening Program conducts other regular surveys to gauge how employees are feeling. The insight into employee sentiments and pain points that we gain from these surveys enables us to take targeted action to improve the employee experience.

For example, the very first remote pulse survey revealed that employees wanted COVID-19 related board communications to have a more personal tone and address their concerns about business disruption and job security. We instantly changed the communications to be more friendly and informal, and set up a company-wide video chat session with the CEO each week. In the results of our next survey, we saw that employee satisfaction with board communications increased to 98% almost immediately.

Based on employee feedback, we also relaxed our remote work policies and introduced flexible schedules for employee with children, to relieve pressure and reduce stress levels. As a result, 96% of employees agree that that Hycom gives them the flexibility to maintain a healthy work-life balance.

In addition, we are using the Qualtrics survey results to determine which variables drive positive employee attitudes in key areas such as job satisfaction and willingness to stay at Hycom. A better understanding of people’s emotions makes it easier for us to pinpoint the issues that really motivate employees and understand how best to respond.


Initial pulse survey results showed that 87% of employees approved of board communications on COVID-19. Feedback revealed that employees wanted a more personal tone. We made changes based on this learning and follow-up survey results indicated that 98% of employees were happy with the new style—an increase of 11 percentage points.

We also asked people if there were any barriers to remote work. 34% of employees were unhappy with their workspace set-up and 17% had problems with their internet connection. Based on this feedback, we ran an in-depth webinar with a remote work expert to help people adapt to working from home. We also provided more than 50 employees with mobile hotspot routers, extra monitors, desks and office chairs. Follow-up survey results showed that the number of employees who agreed with the statement “there are no barriers to working remotely” went from 27% to 41%.

The Technology: 

We relied on XM from SAP and the Remote Work Pulse from Qualtrics, owned by SAP.

  • Employee Benefits Optimizer – a tool enabling benefits teams to understand what its employees want most, and what will deliver the greatest ROI
  • Employee Engagement – a metric from which organizations can build more elaborate listening strategies
  • Employee Lifecycle – feedback mechanisms at every point in the lifecycle
  • Remote Work Pulse – a barometer of employee sentiment
Disruptive Factor: 

The Employee Listening Program is a key pillar of our organizational transformation. We are working to replace the traditional hierarchical organizational structure by redefining the role of the manager, shifting the focus to giving employees the tools and support they need to feel trusted and valued, and perform at their best. We aim to be in constant dialog with employees. It’s only by taking employee feedback on board that we can build a better working environment and give our people the support they need to do their jobs well and be happy at work.

Shining Moment: 

Like all organizations, we had to adapt fast to the new world of 100% remote working during the COVID-19 crisis. We are proud of the fact that we were able to stay connected to employees and respond very rapidly to their needs. Insights from the Qualtrics Remote Work Pulse solution enabled us to take immediate action to resolve pressing pain points and help our people adjust to remote working, keeping them reassured, motivated and, crucially, happy at Hycom.

About Hycom S.A.

Hycom is a leading European consulting and IT delivery provider of omnichannel sales and service platforms and CX management solutions. Hycom uses proven CX frameworks and agile delivery to enable businesses to bring value to customers with technology. Delivered solutions serve millions of customers from top operators such as Deutsche Telekom, Fortum, Robert Bosch, Orange, UPC.