An increasing number of organizations today have come to acknowledge the fact that employee engagement can prove to be a serious game-changer for their venture. In fact, countless studies and researches have proven that engagement is the key to enhanced employee satisfaction and retention. This is because engaged employees tend to be self-inspired to perform the tasks assigned to them to the best of their abilities. They feel a sense of accountability and ownership for every task that they are a part of. This helps improve the overall efficiency and productivity of the organization. Hence it is not surprising that organizations are seeking effective tools and strategies to improve employee motivation and engagement.
Employee engagement – overcoming the challenge
Even though every organization approaches employee engagement differently, most find it extremely challenging. This is because the factors that impact employee engagement are as diverse as the employees themselves. This often causes the organizations to flounder when it comes to defining concrete engagement strategies that can actually prove effective in gauging employee pulse. The good thing, however, is that organizations are constantly adopting new tools and strategies to get better engagement results. In this context, the use of technology has for improving employee engagement has become quite popular for most organizations. The strategy has proven effective as it offers pragmatic add-ons, real-time solutions and carefully planned engagement methodologies that match the specific and dynamic needs of an organization.
Technology as the answer to employee engagement
From application program interfaces (APIs) to gamification, current technology trends provide organizations with a wide range of exciting and intuitive employee programs. These programs ensure increased social networking and interaction between employees for higher workforce productivity. However, as Chris McGrath from Thought farmer has rightly said, just putting the right technology in place is not enough for organizations for getting better engagement results. Discussed below are a few effective ways that organizations can use to integrate technology in the work culture to increase employee interaction:
- Implement the strategy of bringing your own device (BYOD)
Allowing the employee to bring their own device to work help in winning the hearts and minds of employees. Sadly, around 60% of organizations today, prevent their employees from bringing their own devices to work and even when they are granted this freedom, they are allowed to use the devices only with stringent restrictions. This strategy is based on the belief that allowing employees the use of their own devices can put their business at risk. However, such organizations tend to overlook the following facts about BYOD.
- 81% of employees use at least one personal technology tool on the job.
- 30% of these employees admit that they generally disobey a policy banning the use of their own devices at work.
- 69% of the employees are interested in BYOD to create/use their own custom apps at work.
The above pointers make it quite clear that implementing BYOD can enhance the overall satisfaction level of employees and thus drive engagement.
- Promote social media usage at the workplace
Promoting the use of social media in the workplace is another way of integrating technology to drive engagement. In addition to helping in strengthening the relationship between the employees and their coworkers and superiors, social media usage can help employees gain valuable information. They can use their profiles for creating brand awareness and business promotion activities. In fact, when employees feel trusted enough to contribute towards building the social media presence for their corporate brand, they naturally feel happy. Since employee happiness and satisfaction directly impacts their engagement level, it justifies the decision to allow social media usage at work.
- Invest in technologies that provide on-job relaxation
It is quite common for even the most dedicated and motivated employees to feel depressed at work sometimes. Investing in technologies that can restore the motivation and energy levels of the employees in a fun and interesting manner can go a long way in enhancing employee interaction and efficiency. Providing employees with suitable options to have fun at work and reduce their stress levels is the key to driving engagement. Organizations can opt for various gamification technologies to help employees beat a deadline or complete a mundane assignment without feeling bored or overstressed.
- Make use of performance management tools
Organizations can take advantage of various performance management tools and software to set business goals and review employee performance. These tools make use of various methodologies including quizzes and polls to access the performance of individual employees. The managers can then use this information to restructure the task being assigned to employees to enhance their efficiency and performance. It can also improve communication between the management and the employees.
As technology and workforce environments continue to evolve, organizations need to find a way to integrate the two to maximize employee engagement. This will help in promoting innovation and creativity besides strengthening the overall performance and reputation of organizations.