9 ways intranets can engage employees
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12 mins read
Fri, Jun 4, '21
Let's be honest: How often have you felt completely unmotivated at work? We're pretty sure that there have been these moments, we've all been there.
In times when working from home becomes more and more common, the link to the company one is working for can easily get loosened up. Once this happens, it's hard to continue working like before as employee engagement can shrink automatically.
According to a study from Gallup only 36% of employees are engaged in the workplace and 13% are actively disengaged, which means they have poor work experience and spread negativity to colleagues.
In this article you will learn what is employee engagement and how to engage employees. We'll also give you an inside on how an intranet platform can engage employees and thus keep the motivational level high and we'll give you eight of our best employee engagement tips.
What is employee engagement?
When we talk about employee engagement, we mean the connection between an employee and the organization he or she is working for. By that we don't only mean the contractual side, but mostly the emotional commitment and the will to actually realize the goals and objectives of the employer.
Employee engagement has several advantages for companies:
- High employee engagement increases profitability by 21%
- Engaged workplaces have up to 41% lower absenteeism
- Engaged workplaces realize 59% less turnover
- Strong organizational culture increases revenue by 4X
- Employee disengagement is costly: the average cost-per-hire for companies is $4,129
Building an emotional bond in times when people work remotely and/or from home can be a challenge for most companies as it is hard to connect people, to network and to reward great achievements.
How to engage employees?
To engage employees, you need to make sure that you actually reach them. By implementing a central hub of communication, employees can stay in touch, welcome new team-members, and keep the motivation level high – no matter where they are. That’s especially important for remote teams, which can easily get disengaged. There are several methods to enhance employee engagement and we recommend the following:
- Set clear expectations
Communicating expectations from employees is important – it reduces miscommunication and increases the chance of completing tasks successfully.
- Be clear about mission, vision, and goals
Defining those is essential to employee alignment. Managers must communicate how employees work contributes to achieving them. Managers must communicate these principles clearly to their team so employees can work towards a goal together with purpose.
- Encourage feedback
Organizations that give employees the chance to give feedback are more likely to have an engaged workforce. Feedback shouldn’t be limited to annual performance reviews; instead, encourage it in weekly meetings, intranet platforms, and generally speaking, whenever you can – your people should feel free to share their thoughts on anything they find relevant.
- Recognize accomplishments
65% of employees haven’t received any form of recognition for their work over the last year. When people don’t feel appreciated, they will eventually feel disengaged. To celebrate achievements, managers can do the following:
- A face-to-face "thank you" or a personal email is a simple but effective way to celebrate achievement.
- Share it with others: Recognizing achievements and acknowledging success in front of others can be a powerful tool and drives motivation, team building and engagement.
- Bonus, treats or other monetary awards are a great way to treat your employees for doing a great job.
- Celebrate your workforce: recognize their achievements, celebrate their birthdays, or work anniversaries.
- Provide opportunities for development
Employee development is linked to higher employee engagement, which has an impact on business success. Give your employees the opportunity to upskill and gain new knowledge. Once they see the progress of their achievements they will be motivated.
- Use a social intranet
Social intranets make it easier to boost employee engagement and as the year progresses companies look for new ways to keep their employees engaged.You should invest in an intranet to see how a social intranet can boost your employee engagement. In the following, we'll give you eight different ways on how intranets can engage employees.
9 ways on how intranets can engage employees
- Intranets help employees to connect with each other
Working remotely and in a team can be quite frustrating and this can demotivate employees and lead to lower employee engagement. Facilitating an environment that enables employees to connect to their colleagues where they can exchange information will improve their morale and collaboration, core to having engaging employees.
Using an intranet as a remote work tool provides opportunities for employees to collaborate and tag each other through people directory, channels, telecommunication options and projects. Social intranets allow disconnected members in teams to stay close and up-to-date with each other.
Intranets can help connect employees with each other through:
- An organized intranet directory
- A newsfeed
- Commenting on posts by colleagues
- Tagging in news posts
- Shared event calendars
- Collaborative work
- Group discussion boards
- Intranets help to recognise and reward people
A study that was published in The Harvard Business Review found out that 91% of all employees think that insufficient communication is one of the biggest problems in the companies they are working for. Part of this insufficient communication was due to the lack of employee reward (63%), and also the little interaction and networking opportunities with colleagues.
By using an intranet, employees can be rewarded and recognised for their work members through dedicated Channels, sharing an award letter or celebrating members' success in virtual team meetings. The possibilities are endless when it comes to employee reward and recognition and you'll see this is one of the many ways to enhance employee engagement by every reward you're giving.
- Intranets can accurately measure engagement
When offices are globally distributed it can be difficult to measure employee engagement, but, by using Advanced Intranet Analytics you can examine frequent navigation, feature, channel and search trends on your social intranet.
Having access to tools as such allows you to be attentive to employee needs by being given data that enables you to recognise what aspects of your social intranet employees find valuable. If channels are not trending you can offer daily or weekly check-up calls instead to keep members engaged. In essence, if a social intranet gives your employees a voice it gives you an opportunity to listen to them and get an understanding of their needs from just looking at the data. Use this as a chance as an employer to offer your members more at work; to multiply employee happiness and engagement in their workspace and daily tasks.
Intranet also includes survey features that can be distributed to employees. Features like face-to-face talk allows you to collect (in)formal feedback through anonymous data so you can get insight into honest, accurate and unbiased assessments and comments from your workforce.
- Intranets can promote your company culture
Finding it hard to inspire company culture to globally distributed workforce? A social intranet gives employees a connection to your corporate culture, a place where they can be in sync with the tone and objectives of the organization. Teams in multiple time-zones or countries are linked together through the platform, here the organization's identity and development can be communicated and shared to employees via newsfeeds so that employees relate and feel involved in the organization.
An understanding of corporate culture for a team can make the difference between a successful and unsuccessful day at work. Make employees feel as being recognised as a team-member of the organizations rather than an individual working for an organization – involvement drives teamwork and engagement.
- Intranets offer training and workshop sessions
Performing repetitive tasks produces boredom that can lead to employees making errors and mistakes. Giving your employees the opportunity to develop themselves, learn new abilities and strengthen their knowledge is a method to enhance employee engagement.
A social intranet can be used to promote work-related training and workshops for employees to develop their know-how and skillset. Out-of-work social gatherings and events such as yoga, meditation or dance workshops can also be offered to glue together and strengthen teams. All of the above alters routine and challenges employees in multiple ways: personally, socially or professionally. It’ll engage a happier workforce and increase efficiency.
- Intranets help employees on their start
New employees to the organization will have a steep learning curve in the first few weeks. As they’re getting accustomed to their new environment and role, newbies will be focused on learning new processes and systems whilst building a sense of corporate culture and structure.
Studies show that employees are 69% more likely to stay if they experience stellar onboarding, whereas, another study reveals that 31% of new recruits leave the company within 6 months of joining. This highlights the importance of getting the employees’ first few weeks right, especially through the onboarding process.
Research online for useful tips for onboarding remote employees to help yourself tailor more onboarding ideas.
- Intranets speed up employee engagement
Through a social intranet solution new recruits can integrate and adapt to the company culture with ease. Features like file storage provides a structured space for newbies to access important documents, virtual onboarding meetings introduces the employee to all departments of the organization and channels can shout-out the member as a newbie. Engagement of the new employee in the beginning is boosted once they feel recognized by the departments and members of the organization.
- The social and fun aspect
Social intranets can also be a great way to build up unity, integrity and solidarity among employees and teams, boosting their morale. How? Social intranets facilitate a space for informal communication to take place. Social interactions through Informal conversation are great and by nature are far more relational than formal communication because employees can freely feel able to talk about diverse topics between each other.
This encourages a fun environment and improves efficiency since informal communication is faster than formal communication and can be more comforting for some to communicate without hesitation. Without this informality employees can feel demotivated and hesitant to communicate which can prolong tasks and lower overall productivity.
Fun channels for different interests and hobbies can be offered where members can express and share their experiences in these areas. A social intranet is an opportunity to break formal boundaries and enables members to feel comfortable and connected so they can get to know each other as individuals. Collaboration and relationships are heightened this way.
- An organized and reliable and reliable internal system
Prolonged feedback responses due to being unable to find documents is time-consuming and demotivates employees. An intranet resolves this by facilitating an effective organization system where you are able to store files, sheets and documents which is aided through the use of the Universal Search and intranet search bar features.
Employees will have a reliable and valuable search file system where they can access documents easily and immediately without hassle. Feedback is then promptly given and received since employees have fewer obstacles to reviewing documents resulting in higher productivity.
Where to start and how to get employees engaged?
All of the above tips will assist in encouraging employee engagement, however, it is critical to start off by communicating with employees. Understand which tools and features they are missing and/or require so they can perform their tasks as efficiently as possible – listen and adapt to employees needs. This will help teams to reach company targets and goals faster whilst maintaining or improving work quality.
With a general understanding of needs and requirements, you can start off by implementing communication streams such as virtual social meetings or channels to share interests, hobbies and rewards to kick off employee engagement.
Being away from the office environment, remote working can lower engagement as employees can feel isolated and unmotivated. An intranet ensures that employees are connected and kept integrated with your organization’s news, progression and network of employees regardless of their location.
Would you like to learn more about intranet software? Watch a video about intranets or schedule a call with one of our intranet experts.