How To Do Employee Engagement The Right Way?
Employees are the building blocks of an organization. It is the employees that carry out the most trivial and the most complicated business processes, contributing to the overall productivity of your organization.
Owing to the importance your employees hold for your organization, it is important to ensure that they are adequately engaged in the work that they do. Employee engagement is a tricky phrase. Some may refer to it as a measure of happiness of the employees working in an organization, while others may equate employee engagement with employee satisfaction.
In essence, employee engagement is a term used for describing employees who are motivated and voluntarily driven to perform their jobs every day. These employees are dedicated to their work and committed to achieving common organizational goals and objectives.
The term can also be used for employees who do not show up to work every day just because they have to. Instead, they are actively involved in the larger objectives to be achieved and come to work every day because they genuinely want to.
An ideal organization would be the one with 100% employee engagement, with every employee is motivated and driven to perform the tasks they are assigned to do. Here, employee satisfaction and employee productivity are at their peaks.
However, we live in a world that is far from perfect. Several organizations across the world suffer from a lack of employee engagement due to a number of reasons, including insufficient pay, stressful work environment, unorganized employee support, and lack of incentives.
Why Is Employee Engagement Important?
Can your organization function if your employees show up to work every day but are not fully engaged in their work?
Here are some of the key reasons why employee engagement is important for your organization:
Employee engagement is directly connected to employee productivity. It is a universal fact that a motivated employee would work more than the one that drags themselves to work. If your employees are thoroughly engaged in the work they do, they eventually get better at it and their productivity increases over time.
If you are willing to increase the overall productivity of your organization, you can engage your employees by giving them challenges and shouldering them with responsibilities they are capable of handling.
Increased Customer Satisfaction
Especially in the case of customer-facing jobs, engaged employees will always interact with customers better. Over time, customer satisfaction has taken the centre stage in all business activities. If your customers are not happy with the interaction they have with your employees, you may end up losing them.
As employee engagement involves employees who love their job, they will naturally be nicer and more helpful to the customers you cater to.
Increased Employee Retention
If your employees are engaged in their work and are happy with their jobs, they would hardly think of leaving the job and moving elsewhere. Greater employee engagement will help you in retaining some of the best talents within your organization and add to the employee loyalty earned by your company.
However, it is essential to ensure that your employees get a conducive work environment and job satisfaction in order to make them stay and work in your organization for longer.
Improved Company Culture
When your employees are engaged in the work they do, they will stick to the core values and ethics of your company which contribute to your company culture. Therefore, better employee engagement would lead to a more enhanced company culture with the entire team working towards holistic development.
A Sign Of Success
Employee engagement can be seen as a sign of success for your organization. It may not necessarily mean monetary success and increased profits, but higher engagement implies that you have succeeded as an organization to keep your employees voluntarily motivated and satisfied. With higher employee engagement, an organization can overcome an array of obstacles.
Common Mistakes In Employee Engagement
Although employee engagement is not rocket science, not everyone is able to achieve ideal engagement from their employees. This is often because of some glaring mistakes in the approach. It is likely that what you think is employee engagement may not precisely be so.
Here are some of the most common mistakes in employee engagement that every organization should avoid:
Overlooking Generation Gap
Just like you cannot treat all your customers the same way, you should never make the mistake of treating all your employees the same. There is a massive difference in expectations, motivation, triggers, and work ethics between employees of different ages. When you are engaging your employees in work, make sure that you keep the generation gap in mind.
Limiting Engagement To Compensation
Higher compensation and monetary incentives often motivate employees to work harder and better. However, an organization should never make the mistake of buying employee engagement by limiting it to monetary incentives.
If you try to engage your employees by paying them more for working in a toxic work environment, the money you spend will have no meaning and contribution towards employee engagement.
Being Averse To Technology
In spite of living in the age of digitization, organizations make the mistake of considering technology as an enemy. Today, you can succeed in achieving your goals and diversifying your business only if you befriend technological advancements.
The use of technology makes the work of your employees more manageable and increases employee productivity. Sticking to the traditional techniques will only exhaust your employees and stagnate the progress of your organization.
Best Employee Engagement Practices
Employee engagement is a planned and organized process that needs to be carried out in a sustainable manner. Through scalable employee engagement practices, you can increase employee satisfaction and increase their motivation to work harder for their team.
Here are some of the best employee engagement practices that guarantee success if implemented well:
Keep track of Engagement
Employee engagement is essentially an intangible virtue that cannot be measured overtly. However, it is crucial to keep track of how engaged your employees to make the right decisions.
The most common way of measuring employee engagement surveys
Surveys allow you to ascertain how well you have been doing in keeping your employees engaged. The questions in the surveys can vary for different organizations.
Some of the most common questions revolve around the work satisfaction received by the employees, the knowledge of what is expected from them, and whether the core mission of the company is important for their jobs. You can decide on key metrics and measure engagement based on the same.
Have Clearly Defined Expectations
It is important for your employees to know exactly what is expected of them to have them engaged in their work. It is essential to clearly define what is expected from which employees to get them working in the right direction.
Also, make sure that the expectations are in sync with the capabilities of the employees. Having expectations that are too high for an employee will end up exhausting or demotivating them from work.
Lead With An Example
When you set an example for your employees and show them the potential results of better engagement, they will be more focused and engaged in their work. Having an example to look up to within the team ends up instilling faith and confidence to work harder and reach new heights through thorough engagement.
Have A Regular Feedback Loop
Without productive feedback, your employees will never know what works and what doesn’t work for their respective jobs. Always make sure that you provide timely feedback to your employees, tracking their progress and pointing out the areas where they have gone wrong.
When you provide honest and considerate feedback to your employees, they feel valued and cared for by the company they work in. This, in turn, leads to an increased will and motivation to work for you.
Focus On Appointing The Right Managers
Managers play a critical role in employee engagement as they overlook all the activities performed by their team members. If you hire the right managers for the right job, they can act as bouncing boards for your employees whenever they are in doubt. Also, responsible managers focus on increasing the productivity of their team while handling the grievances of their team members.
Give Importance To Employee Support
Employees can be more engaged in their work if they are provided with the right support. Traditional employee service desks have often received flak for not providing adequate support to the employees. For increasing employee engagement, employee productivity, and employee satisfaction, it is important to streamline employee support.
Focus on exit and stay interviews
Conducting exit interviews allows an organization to understand the potential pain points of its employees and the reason behind them leaving the company. These results help you leverage your employee engagement.
However, conducting “stay” interviews is just as important. The purpose of these interviews is to identify the issues troubling the employees and making amendments before they make the decision to leave the company. Stay interviews act as a corrective measure to ramp up an organization’s employee engagement and focus on retaining valuable employees.
How Has Employee Engagement Changed Over Time?
As businesses have diversified and technology has taken over traditional processes, the need for efficient employee engagement has become more pressing and urgent than it ever was.
Gone are the days when remuneration and promotions were the only two factors responsible for driving employees to work. Employees today prioritize a conducive work environment over anything else. You can no longer expect an employee to work with dedication just because you are paying them well.
Employee engagement has assumed a holistic approach in recent times. The advent of digital practices has resulted in the need for ease of operation and process automation. Employees no longer prefer working using traditional practices and spend their time and effort doing repetitive tasks.
A lot of employee engagement today depends on the nature of employee support provided by an organization. As mentioned earlier, traditional service desks can no longer tend to the specific needs of your employees. If you provide unorganized and fragmented support to your employees, engagement is bound to go down.
The Role Of Technology In Employee Support
As a solution to the problems arising out of the traditional employee support, digital ad automated platforms came in for the rescue. These are the modern employee service desks that make sure that employee engagement never goes down.
Such service desks make use of AI technology in providing instant support to the employees on an integrated digital platform. Instead of your employees having to wait for the agents to solve their problems, the virtual assistants in the AI service desks scan the knowledge base and provide them with a personalized solution within seconds.
With the rise of virtual workplaces in 2020, online collaborative platforms adopted automated employee support to leverage their employee engagement. Rezolve.ai, the AI service desk integrated within Microsoft Office, makes use of AI chatbots for providing instant support to the employees working in all the departments within an organization.
The use of AI chatbots makes the entire traditional ticketing system obsolete as the virtual assistants create, track, and close tickets on behalf of the employees. This allows your employees to get all their issues resolved through a single unified platform with utmost ease and efficiency.
Implementing these platforms help your employees get genuinely driven towards work and find an answer to all their problems. When your employees are able to get their problems resolved by themselves, they are naturally motivated to work harder and improve their skills, leading to an increase in employee productivity.
The Final Word
It is important to understand the often overlooked need for employee engagement within an organization for it to function smoothly.
As employee needs went through a significant transformation over time, the scope of engagement became wider. It is important for an organization to understand this trend and make all necessary changes to ensure that its employees are engaged in the work they do.