Clearly employee engagement should be high on the agenda of any senior management team. But what is engagement really? Table football and bean bags are not cutting the mustard, and creating an employee engagement strategy can be easier said than done. Often there’s little time to implement even the more realistic ideas, especially for smaller businesses with stretched resources.
Help is at hand! We’ve outlined 5 practical ways to supercharge your employee engagement and reap the rewards:
1) First impressions count
Effective onboarding is critical to ensuring engagement with SilkRoad reporting that 53% of HR professionals say employee engagement rises when onboarding is improved. It’s your first chance to make a good impression with your new hire with the aim to retain them for the long-term.
It helps to document a formal onboarding process in advance and automating what you can, which improves productivity for your HR teams and means that your new hire is provided access to all the company documents and information they need to feel welcome on their first day. Using HR Software with an onboarding portal included can optimise this process and provide consistency for all involved.
2) Show how your employees make an impact
Often employees feel that their contributions go unnoticed. It is easy for your staff to get lost in the day to day tasks and “getting the job done” without seeing how they effect the bigger picture. If you share your company objectives with your workforce, and create objectives to show how they can make an impact to this you’re more likely to keep them consistently engaged, focussed and motivated.
Using a modern performance strategy like Objective and Key Results (OKRs) can really change the way your employees feel about their job and keep them engaged with the overall objectives. According to IBM, 80% of employees felt more engaged when their work was consistent with the core values and mission of their organization.
3) Encourage an open and transparent culture
Some of the world’s most successful companies operate using an open approach to company objectives, direction and focus. 90% of jobseekers have stated that it is important to work in a transparent organisation, according to Glassdoor.
When you adopt a transparent culture in your organisation, employees are immediately more trusting and feel comfortable in their roles. This can then lead to them providing feedback to others, even to those in senior positions. By encouraging opinions to be shared and most importantly, listened to, your employees will feel more valued and in turn truly care about the business success and staying in their roles.
Using a method like the OKR model can support sharing the company aims with your employees and providing your workforce with the ability to contribute, comment and share ideas with colleagues. Not only can your staff see the overall aims of the business but they also get to see how they fit and contribute to these goals.
4) Take the time to encourage each individual
Everyone is busy and it can feel like there is never enough time to complete all the required day to day tasks. As a result, feedback and discussion can fall to the bottom of the priorities list. This can leave employees feeling unmotivated and under appreciated. Working together and encouraging others can be the difference between getting a job done and transforming a business. As Michael Jordan stated “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships.”
Building feedback into your company culture and daily activities can help to make this process effortless. Once employees and managers start engaging with each other it breeds further engagement and improved success. If you have a solution in place to support this process, then even better. HR Software can offer options such as “shout-outs” and feedback to help you provide encouragement to a peer in seconds.
5) Invest in technology
If you are trying to implement a strategy to encourage increased employee engagement, it can be hard to know where to start. Finding yourself a good software tool to get started is the best first step.
An ideal HR solution for engagement would include a great onboarding tool to encourage new starters to feel included and part of the team from before day one. The software must also be able to support feedback throughout the year and not just at annual review time. Having the ability to provide “performance feedback” and “shout-outs” immediately increases engagement between employees and even better if this can be done ad-hoc when events happen.
Using a software solution which supports OKRs, will allow you to be transparent with goals, aims and expectations. Placing these alongside feedback and praise is a winning formula for engagement and business success.
It is clear to see that whatever industry you work in, employee engagement must be a priority for you going forward. A highly engaged team will produce you much better results then a team who do not communicate, do not feel valued and cannot share their ideas. Take a moment today to consider how engaged your workforce are and look at the ways in which you could improve this.