After the turmoil of the past two years, employee engagement software has become essential in maintaining productive, stable and engaged employees ready for long-term business success.
With hybrid and remote working becoming the norm in many industries, organisations of all sizes have the opportunity to widen their talent pools and offer employees tempting flexible working benefits – precisely what today’s employees want.
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25% of professional jobs expect to be fully remote by the end of 2022 – a significant proportion of your workforce you need to cater for.
The key takeaway here? If you want the productivity and performance benefits an engaged workforce offers, you need to commit to the infrastructure that enables and encourages it. This means you need employee engagement tools supported by a modern intranet platform.
Buffer’s latest State of Remote Work Report suggests that some of the biggest struggles remote workers face are poor communication and feelings of isolation. You can reduce this burden with good management practices – but to eliminate it entirely, you need to ensure you’re using employee engagement technology that enhances engagement across the entire workforce.
In today’s environment, businesses of all sizes are quickly realising that their employee engagement software – and their corporate intranet in particular – needs updating to provide the level of communication required to streamline hybrid working environments and keep all employees in the loop and feeling valued no matter where they’re working.
If you’re looking at upgrading your employee engagement tools, here’s how to find a solution to reduce employee turnover, boost engagement, increase employee recognition and contribute to a desirable company culture.
1. Conduct a requirements analysis
As with any investment, getting a good return on your employee engagement platform relies on understanding the following pre purchase:
- What issues are we having with employee engagement?
- What improvements would we like to see, and how can we measure advances in employee engagement?
- What type of employee engagement software will support us in implementing these improvements?
To find out the answer to these questions, you should conduct an extensive requirements analysis before researching any further. This involves surveying stakeholders and key users of employee engagement software about what works, what doesn’t, and what improvements they envisage.
This allows you to start identifying the best employee engagement tools for your business.
Who will use your employee engagement program?
Thankfully, stakeholder identification for employee engagement solutions is very simple. Everyone will use your employee engagement software in some capacity.
It’s unlikely you’ll be able to survey everyone, particularly in larger organisations but do ensure that you have stakeholder representatives from:
- Desk-based employees
- Frontline employees
- Employees with a range of seniority levels
- Remote employees
- Employees of all genders and ages
2. Make a list of priorities
Your requirements analysis should offer up valuable insights into how you could improve your employee engagement, for example:
- Remote workers feel isolated and struggle to collaborate with office-based teams
- Employees have issues accessing expertise housed in different departments
- Employees resent how long it takes for annual leave to be approved
Identify the common themes in your responses and create a list of priorities. You won’t be able to address absolutely every issue you have at once, so think carefully about which matters are of greatest importance.
If you’re familiar with employee engagement software already, you may be able to map these requirements directly onto the employee engagement software features. For example, difficulties with knowledge transfer and information silos between departments could be eased with discussion forums, instant messaging (IM), and the other communications and collaboration tools a good intranet platform can provide.
Finding the best employee engagement platform for you
Employee engagement platforms come in many shapes and forms. To increase employee retention and employee satisfaction, use your requirements analysis to understand where you need to focus.
Deciding which one is best depends on your needs. Single-function software like survey tools, instant messaging tools, employee recognition tools and learning management systems (LMSs) are great at fulfilling a specific niche. If your employee engagement issues boil down solely to a single issue, then these tools will prove useful.
But when has employee engagement ever been as simple as that?
What if you’re looking to foster engagement holistically across the entire organisation? You need something that can do it all.
This is why a modern, cloud-based intranet is a the most powerful employee engagement solution available to organisations. Versatile, mobile friendly and easily accessible, a well-designed intranet offers the following employee engagement benefits, all under one roof.
- Company news announcements and other internal communications functions
- Employee engagement surveys for valuable employee feedback
- Instant messaging and employee directories for employee communication
- Networking tools such as social sharing and social feeds
- Cloud and mobile functionality for remote workers
- Forums for knowledge sharing, e-learning and document management
- Employee recognition and rewards tools to celebrate worker successes across your entire organisation
- Automating routine managerial tasks (such as leave management) so that managers can spend more time building genuine relationships with employees
3. Research vendors and invite them to demo
Now’s the time to start researching the various platforms and employee apps on the market. There are many resources you can use to help you here, including:
- Software review sites such as Capterra, Software Advice and G2
- Vendor content such as blogs, podcasts and video demos and walkthroughs
- Free trials and freemium software
- Your own professional network – reach out to your contacts to see what they are using
Once you’ve weighed up your options, invite your top three or four employee engagement systems to provide a personal demo of their solution. This allows you to get a taste of the software in action and understand if it truly meets your needs. During demos, ask vendors to run through specific, real-world scenarios on their software so your stakeholder groups can get a feel for it.
This should give you and your stakeholders all the information you need to decide whether a particular employee engagement tool is the right fit for you.