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Employee engagement is at an all-time low in the U.S. and globally. According to new research from Gallup, only 21% of global employees are engaged at work. That means four of every five employees are disengaged, which leads to lower productivity, lower motivation, more errors, and higher turnover.
And the trend of sinking engagement levels seems to only be getting worse. But! Just because it’s a trend doesn’t mean you have to accept it. Just look at the recent comeback of mullets—that’s a trend we’ll happily reject.
Business leaders and HR teams have ways to combat disengagement, raise interest and satisfaction, and get employees more excited and invested in their work. These strategies are:
- Better communication
- Enhanced professional development
- Greater focus on wellness
- More rewards and recognition
This is the playbook you need to improve engagement in your organization. By focusing on this list of improvements, you’ll create a business culture where employees feel valued, supported, and motivated.
You don’t have to work on the above strategies manually, either. Here are some employee engagement tools that fit into each strategy, making it easier than ever to improve engagement.
Tools to Foster Better Communication
Open, honest, and frequent communication can be a huge boost to employee engagement. Leaders and executives should be communicative on policies, business goals, and even financial circumstances. And employees should feel like their voice is heard when they communicate.
Collaboration is another big factor for engagement, but it can be challenging, especially with the growth of remote and hybrid work. Here are some tools to help foster better communication in the workplace:
1. Video Call Software: Zoom
Video calls are a great way to get teams together to collaborate, chat, and maintain relationships. Zoom is an extremely popular video conferencing platform that makes it easy to create meetings, invite colleagues, and host virtual events.
You can even take advantage of features such as recording your video calls or using your phone, computer, or tablet to join.
Zoom isn’t your only option, however. Here are some alternatives you might want to check out:
2. Chat Software: Slack
Efficient communication is integral to helping employees feel engaged. When they have questions, concerns, or ideas, they should know how to quickly communicate with those they need to talk to. Plus, friendships at work are very important, and a messaging software can help those relationships stay strong.
Slack is the undisputed king of messaging apps, offering an extremely robust yet easy-to-use app for teams of any size. Create one-on-one or group chats, create specific channels for needs, hobbies, or interests, and organize everything with hashtags.
While Slack is extremely popular, you should check out your other options to see what fits your needs best:
3. Project Management App: Monday
With varied projects, due dates, tasks, and meetings all vying for employees’ time, a good project management tool is a necessity. Work can be complex, and if people get confused about who’s doing what, how to do a task, or when something is due, they’re not going to be engaged in what they’re doing.
One of the best options to clarify work and organize tasks is Monday. Monday is affordable and offers a comprehensive list of tools and features to help your teams stay on task. Plus, you can integrate other tools such as Zoom, Adobe, and Salesforce to keep everyone in one tool.
Here are a few other options to consider:
Tools to Improve Professional Development
Employees want to know that their organization values them and will invest in their success. A total of 71% of employees say learning and development opportunities increase job satisfaction, and when employees are satisfied at work, they’re more engaged.
Professional development encompasses learning new skills, taking on new responsibilities, training, and performance evaluations—basically anything that helps employees learn, grow, and succeed. Here are some tools to make learning and development a breeze.
1. Learning Management System: Absorb LMS
Planning training courses, tracking learning, and keeping track of progress can be a lot of work. However, employees need opportunities to learn and grow—if they feel stuck in a dead-end job, they’re not going to be engaged, right? Luckily, a learning management software will help you plan, track, and organize your learning and development initiatives.
With a tool like Absorb LMS, you can empower learning experiences that scale with your growth. Engage employees with training programs, offer a ready-made content library, and track data-driven insights.
A few other options you can consider include:
2. Incentive Programs: Awardco
In order to get the most participation and excitement around new programs and software, you need effective incentives. Incentive software is great for setting up custom incentives and getting employees to buy-in to your culture, which naturally improves engagement levels.
Here at Awardco, our rewards and recognition platform allows you to create completely customized incentive programs that fit your needs, your budget, and your reward choices. From wellness programs and safety training to professional development programs and sales incentives, Awardco can help you create, track, and manage incentives and budgets.
Other incentive and compensation management software options include:
Tools to Improve Flexibility
In order for employees to be engaged at work, you have to give them the flexibility they want to get work done when and where they want. With more flexibility comes greater freedom, greater trust, and greater work-life balance, which all enhance engagement. Plus, a study of teams with flexible policies showed that 97% of managers agreed that quantity of work either improved or stayed the same, and 93% agreed that quality of work improved or stayed the same.
Flexibility may be intimidating, but it won’t adversely affect your business—in fact, it’ll improve productivity, motivation, and engagement.
1. Collaboration and Brainstorming Tool: Figma
In order to empower flexibility, you need to empower digital brainstorming. With tools like Figma, teams can diagram, sticky-note, and workshop together in real time, making ideation a fun activity. Teams can jot down notes, design, and execute projects in a seamless way. This makes it easy to offer flexibility because productivity is still supported.
Other options for brainstorming and collaboration tools:
2. Scheduling Tool: Sling
Flexible work means employees working at different times and at different locations. While that may sound like a recipe for miscommunications, a good scheduling software can avoid any issues or confusion while empowering work-life balance and employee freedom.
Sling is a great option when it comes to workforce management, and it includes a robust scheduling tool. Create templates, get notifications, track shifts, and use the news feed to keep everyone updated on any changes. You can also add PTO and “unavailable” slots into employee schedules, which helps with clarity for remote workers.
Other scheduling tools to know about:
Tools for More Employee Recognition
Employees want to feel valued. They want to know that the work they do matters and that their leaders care about them. Employee rewards and recognition in the one-two punch every business needs to show employees appreciation, drive behavior, and improve work culture.
Workplace recognition improves motivation, increases productivity, raises retention—and yes, gets employees more engaged.
1. Employee Recognition Platform: Awardco
We’re tooting our own horn again, but as the most flexible, customizable recognition platform around (and with the largest reward network on the planet), we think we’re a pretty good choice. Awardco is a one-stop shop for recognition, rewards, and incentives, and we make it easy to use. You can create customized recognition programs, take advantage of personalized reward options, and even implement a Lifestyle Spending Account.
We know not everyone will want to go with Awardco—checkout some other options here are some other options to consider:
Buck the Disengagement Trend
Employee engagement is dropping steadily—but it doesn’t have to. The workplace is the greatest drive of engagement, and with these tools, you can create a culture where employees are excited, motivated, and happy.