Employee engagement is an important metric that sheds light on the level of employee involvement in a company, and the concept has also become a key pillar of an employee retention strategy. For example, a study conducted by Harvard Business Analytic Services found that 92 percent of executives surveyed believe that employee engagement is critical to their company's success and a key to productivity, loyalty and customer satisfaction.
3 main drivers of employee engagement
Employee engagement describes the relationship between a company and its employees and primarily refers to the degree of emotional attachment, motivation and commitment to the employer’s goals and their own sense of purpose.
At its core, employee engagement involves these three dimensions:
- Cognitive: How do employees think about the company? Can they identify with its values?
- Emotional: How do employees feel at work? Are they satisfied with the work environment and their job?
- Behavioral: Do employees do their work with commitment and motivation? Are they loyal and would they recommend the company to others as a great place to work?
- Employee engagement is supported by offering opportunities for mentoring, continuing education and policies that encourage work/life balance. It is particularly high when employees' personal career and life goals are in line with the company's culture and vision. This creates the optimal environment for employees to contribute to the success of the company and builds an emotional bond with their workplace.
Employee engagement plays a crucial role in the war for talent. Due to the shortage of skilled workers and the increased expectations of employees, it is becoming more and more difficult for companies to find and, more importantly, retain skilled personnel. It is no longer enough to offer a competitive salary and generous benefits. Career development opportunities and the company’s mission and values often have equal weight in a candidates decision to accept a job.
Companies that ensure their employees are satisfied and engaged reap the following benefits:
- They are about 20% more profitable.
- Reduced stress and pressure and the encouragement of positive attitudes.
- Employees who speak positively about their company and act as brand ambassadors generate more reach on social media and at industry organizations.
- Less absenteeism.
- A better customer experience that promotes their willingness to buy and increase their loyalty.
5 ways technology promotes enthusiasm and innovation
Companies that use the best employee engagement tactics do more than support creativity and collaboration. For example, a study by Unisys and HFS Research found that for 62% of the employees surveyed, access to technology is a very motivating factor and improves work performance. These are some of the ways to build a flourishing digital environment.
1. Collaboration tools
These days, hybrid work and digitalization are the norm. So, it is imperative to provide employees with up-to-date, high-quality tools that promote collaboration in teams and facilitate the sharing of folders and documents. Through chats, video calls, and platforms like a document management system (DMS) that facilitate collaboration teams work together more efficiently, exchange ideas and complete projects within deadlines -- no matter where or when they work.
2. Automation of manual processes
Some organizations still rely on manual processes for routine tasks such as capturing, reviewing and entering data into internal and external applications. As a result, employees spend countless hours on monotonous tasks such as data entry and searching for information in paper files, unorganized shared drives or their email inboxes. This brings processes to a standstill and can result in the introduction of human error and in employee frustration. A DMS solves this problem by simplifying how documents are captured, stored, edited and searched, and by automating workflows. For employees, this eliminates manual, error-prone routine tasks. Instead, they work more productively and spend their energy on more valuable and rewarding activities.
Training and development opportunities are among the most important factors for increasing employee satisfaction, retaining them, and boosting their productivity in the long term. Through digital and location-independent elearning offerings, they benefit from the greatest possible flexibility, as they can decide for themselves when and where they want to work through the learning material and at what pace. Companies, on the other hand, can analyze learning successes, adapt learning content in a targeted manner, and better support employees along the way.
4. BYOD models
Bring-your-own-device models enable employees to use their own devices for work. Via notebooks, smartphones and tablets, they can access the corporate network and internal company data and applications, send emails or log into the intranet. Employees are more mobile and productive and enjoy a better user experience, while companies benefit from lower technology acquisition costs and greater flexibility. However, it is important to ensure your company creates comprehensive policies, compliance rules and training to make data and documents as secure as possible for companies and employees alike.
Gamification describes the use of playful elements and mechanisms in a non-game context. This includes, among other things, points or badges when certain goals are met, team competitions and quizzes. This approach can boost morale and lighten up training and educational sessions. These playful elements also help to increase employee engagement at work by creating incentives through rewards.
Investing in technologies that promote employee engagement has many benefits for companies and employees alike. Taking the initiative and consistently engaging employees not only increases their loyalty and productivity. Companies also benefit from a positive reputation and brand image and of course from higher sales. Due to a shortage of skilled workers and the prevalence hybrid work, where employees want to work flexibly from anywhere, a company with a strong focus on technology is an attractive and progressive employer.