Achieving Immersive Employee Engagement with Culture, Technology and Data
by Nitin Gupta, on Sep 5, 2017 12:17 PM
It’s common knowledge that effective employee engagement is the key to the success of any organization. When employees are properly cared for, they are likely to be motivated, stay focused, work hard and align their goals with that of the organization. Recent research studies have revealed that employee engagement initiatives directly impact revenue growth. This provides all the more reasons to companies to launch effective employee engagement programs.
When motivation levels are high, it’s likely that employees will have better interactions with clients and prospects and other target audiences such as prospective future employees. This will contribute significantly towards improving brand image and public perceptions about the organization. Employee engagement initiatives have also shown to foster improved cooperation within teams, which is one of the key prerequisites for organizational success.
While the benefits of employee engagement are widely known, implementing it within an organization can be a challenge. There is no standard formula and it can vary from organization to organization. Employee engagement initiatives can take any shape or form, but most of these are supported by three primary pillars – culture, technology and data. This is where organizations need to focus if they want their employee engagement initiatives to be successful. Here’s a brief overview of the three core components of employee engagement initiatives.
- Culture: Encouraging the right culture is one of the first steps organizations need to take for employee engagement. The culture should allow employees to experience a sense of connect with other team members and to realize that they are working towards a common goal. Such a culture can only be fostered when it is practiced by the top management and it flows down to each and every employee. It shall also manifest beyond the organizational boundaries to positively impact clients and prospects, vendors, suppliers, etc. A simple way to achieve such a culture is to evolve the organization as a family, where needs and responsibilities of employees get equal recognition and there is no bias against individual members.
- Technology: Employees are social creatures and the need for social interactions exists within every organization. In case of a small organization, for example, a startup with 10 to 20 employees, one can just walk up to a person and interact with them. However, when we consider hundreds or thousands of employees spread across the globe, social interactions can only be achieved through technology. The interactions would cover both formal and informal interactions, which are important for employee engagement. Successful companies have created advanced apps and intranet systems that employees are using to communicate with other team members, get critical inputs from other teams or Subject Matter Experts (SME), and find the data they need to get work done. Such apps also simplify other tasks such as booking meeting rooms, registering for company transport, applying for holidays, filing tax returns, filling insurance forms, etc.
Organizations can create their own employee engagement programs using a combination of these three core components. It will help ensure that both employees and the organization can continue to grow and evolve. It will also result in improved relations with other entities in the ecosystem such as customers, communities and other stakeholders.
- Data: The data collected by an organization can be used to identify factors that may be influencing employee performance and productivity. This is not to point fingers at employees, but to make changes in the various organizational processes that may be slowing down employees. For example, a complicated leave application system may be forcing employees to spend an inordinate amount of time to get it right. Data can help identify such problems in the system and fix it at the earliest. It will help improve employee experience and also enhance their performance and productivity. Data can also be used at the team level to identify the strengths and weaknesses of employees. It can be used to provide the right mentoring and appropriate career growth opportunities, relevant to their skills and potential.