15 HR statistics from 2021 to enhance employee experience in 2022

The past 12 months have seen the world of work evolve to one where hybrid and remote working have rapidly become the norm. Employees’ needs have substantially changed. They expect HR teams to provide open communication, personalization, mobile functionality for all HR Services, and greater support for home working.


At the end of 2021, over 200 HR leaders from 13 industries completed Applaud’s Annual Digital Employee Experience (DEX) Audit. The results, published in our Digital Employee Experience 2022 Trends Report, provide some valuable learnings to minimize employee churn and maximize satisfaction as we go into 2022. Below we’ve included a number of human resources statistics from our findings to give you a flavor of how businesses in different sectors are performing.


josh_bersin_headshot_imgYour Guide To: Employee Experience Platforms (EXP)
Read Josh Bersin's report to learn more about the EXP market and it's future, what to look for in an EXP and how companies are using them to transform their employee experience. Read Now.


Industries audited included:

  • Finance
  • Health Care
  • Manufacturing
  • Professional Services
  • Public Sector
  • Retail
  • Technology
  • Utilities



HR Tech Statistics

Case Management Statistics

Employee Experience Statistics

Employee Engagement Statistics



HR Tech Statistics

Although human resources management might consider their HR software an IT issue, confusing and numerous HR systems have a detrimental effect on the workforce. They create more support tickets for human resources departments as employees struggle with multiple log-ins and URLs.


29% of companies need employees to access 6 - 10 different HR Systems

Our audit found that the majority of organizations needed their workforce to access 6 or more HR systems. 19% of firms claimed to have more than 10 different systems and 11% required workers to navigate a staggering 20+ systems.  


Just 23% of HR services are accessible via mobile and were consumer-grade

Although, as consumers, the majority of employees regularly enjoy a flawless user experience (for example through Netflix, Spotify and Uber), they are being let down as a workforce with inaccessible and clunky technology from their employers. Under a quarter of organizations said that their HR services matched up to the consumer experience.

Just under half of companies claimed to have some of their HR services available on mobile devices but admitted the experience was not as strong as on a desktop. 

Take a look at the webinar below to learn more about how consumer technology has impacted employee expectations when it comes to HR Systems.

50% of companies can’t update their HR Portal without IT

Half of organizations remain totally reliant on IT for making changes or updates to their HR Portal, using technology that wasn’t built for agility. 

This figure increases to 67% in the manufacturing sector.

Additionally, 31% of the remaining businesses can only update some parts independently of IT or developers. 

To overcome this problem companies should consider investing in an agile HR system that requires very little or no code. Find out more about how no-code can help HR innovate faster here.


Case Management Statistics

The process for raising queries and concerns, whether it's regarding technology or policies, can add many hours to an already stretched HR team’s schedule.


87% of organizations use an email or ticketing system

When employees are looking to contact technical support, the most commonly used method is via email or a helpdesk ticket. 


Half of firms utilize live chat for contacting technical support

This figure is slightly lower in Professional Services (33%) and the Public Sector (25%).


29% of companies have no defined process for raising concerns in the workplace

Just less than a third of businesses are lacking an official route for highlighting more grave concerns. This figure rises to 47% for Professional Services and a staggering 67% in Utilities

When there is a lack of official process, employees tend to reach out to HR directly for advice - this can be easily resolved by making policies easier to find, for example via a search tool on your HR System.



Employee Experience Statistics

Broadly described as an employee’s perception of their time at work, Employee Experience covers every process and space in working life. Digital Employee Experience (DEX) has become increasingly important in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and HR Technology plays a fundamental role in delivering it.  


Less than 13% of organizations offer any sort of personalized digital employee experience.

Technology and Finance firms performed best here with 29% offering each employee a highly personalized experience.

None of the businesses in Health Care that completed Applaud’s Audit offered any sort of personalization. 

Macbook 12

75% of businesses do not collect real-time feedback on their Digital Employee Experience

Frequent opportunities to comment on their experience makes employees feel valued by their company. Interestingly in Finance, only 43% of companies fail to collect real-time feedback, significantly below the average.


38% of companies do not send surveys out to the workforce at all

This figure rises to 75% for businesses in the Retail sector. However, 34% of organizations did claim to send regular surveys and 24% an annual one. In this area once again Finance performs better than average, with 71% of firms sending out regular surveys. 


Employee Engagement Statistics

The massive changes forced by the pandemic have given employees the opportunity to re-evaluate their priorities when it comes to where, when and how they work. Issues like mental health and employee burnout have moved to the forefront of workplace discussions. Now more than ever, it’s critical to keep your workforce happy, healthy and engaged.


Disengaged employees are costing the UK economy £340 billion each year

According to Perkbox, disengaged employees can dramatically affect an organization’s bottom line. When factors like sick days, productivity, training and recruitment are taken into account, this figure sits at around a whopping £340 billion across the UK.

In the US, employee engagement in the workplace dropped for the first time since 2008 in the second half of 2021 (Gallup). Just 34% of employees were actively engaged and 16% actively disengaged, compared to the previous yearly average of 36% and 14% respectively.


72% of people across the UK now support the idea of a 4-day working week

This proposal is even more attractive to younger employees, 67% of Gen Z respondents claimed it would be a decision-making factor when choosing an employer (Henley Business School).


85% of remote workers want hybrid working going forward

According to an April 2021 report from the Office for National Statistics, 85% of employees in the UK who were working remotely wanted their future working life to include both office and home-based elements.  

In the US, 55% of employees said they wanted to continue working remotely for at least three days of the week in the future (PWC).

Ensuring your company has a solid virtual onboarding experience is now more important than ever. In this 25-minute masterclass, Applaud’s Ivan Harding and Matthew Bennett demonstrate the potential for digital onboarding within the Applaud platform.



As we’ve learned over the past two years, the landscape which HR professionals have to navigate can change at any given moment. While the trajectory of 2022 remains unpredictable, what is clear from these human resources industry statistics is that most businesses will need to accommodate employees in offices, in their homes and in a combination of different hybrid environments. To do so, HR departments must be agile and empower their employees to be as self-sufficient as possible and choose working styles that work for them.


HR systems, and particularly those rolled out in enterprise companies, need to be consumer-grade and mobile-optimized. If not the potential gains such as fewer tickets being raised by frustrated staff, will not come to fruition. The HR team must adopt personalized platforms that are easily accessible to drive employee satisfaction and offer them the sort of flexibility and engagement they would have in their personal lives. Therefore, working with the right partner will ensure that the HR function embodies personalization and humanistic experiences within a business’s core philosophy.


Want the big picture on Digital Employee Experience?

V1_Applaud_Trends_Report_Mockup (2)

Download the full version of The 2022 DEX Trends Report, with insights from over 200 HR leaders, plus recommendations for the future.



Looking for more thought-leadership pieces like this? Head over to the Trends category on our blog.

Published March 10, 2022 / by Ivan Harding