The rapidly evolving work environment requires investments and adaptation from employers to engage their employees.
Employee engagement; it’s an approach that results in employees giving their best at work every day, committed to the organization’s goals and values, with an enhanced sense of well-being (Engage for Success). It’s also about employees having the requirements needed to complete their work completely and beyond, and to grow personally and professionally.
Engagement adds value all the way: it improves communication, productivity and revenue. Disengaged employees cost the US economy up to $370 annually in the US, National Business Research Institute reveals.
How can technology be used to engage the workforce?
1) Using technology around a strategy
Using the right technology matters a great deal. Having a strategy for shared technology is even more crucial. When there are goals in place for employees using shared tools, all efforts can be measured and tracked. Technology that involves social media and mobile applications are particularly powerful, for they have blurred the lines between internal and external communication.*
2) Setting a communication guideline
A guideline for using shared employee communication technology provides the dos and don’ts of online behavior as well as guidance on what kind of behavior the company hopes from employees externally. When employees are aligned with the company values and goals, it’s easier for them to be engaged with their work and organization.
3) Striving for authenticity through content
Employee engagement must always be genuine to generate long-term results for the organization. Internal storytelling is a great way to gather employees around designated topics that create emotional connections and support their professional knowledge. “Where facts simply deliver content, stories change attitudes and behavior,” says Matt West from Insidedge. Employees should also have access to meaningful third-party content they can share to their social networks.
4) Activating internal communication
Functioning communication between the employer and employees is one of the pillars of engaging employees. Supporting active conversations with employee communication tools can improve communication between the employer and employees as well among colleagues. This does not erase the need for face-to-face communication; it simply makes discussions, regardless of location or time differences, easier and more interactive.
5) Employee Advocacy is good for engagement
The growth of Employee Advocacy programs represents a significant shift in mindset from a thinking of social as a department-level tool to one that engages the entire workforce in achieving business objectives**. It goes beyond having shared technology; when different departments are included and involved in Employee Advocacy, the chances of engaging employees, boosting company culture and improving department-specific results on a company-wide level are significant.
*Using Technology to Engage Hard-to-Reach Employees by Michelle Glover, COO, ROI Communication
**Social Media Employee Advocacy: Tapping into the power of an engaged workforce by Ed Terpening