Employers understand that employee engagement does not mean employee happiness, so in 2024 they are all about perfecting the employee experience to retain talent and strengthen teams.
Enhancing engagement with innovative tools and integrations
With the ongoing popularity of remote and hybrid work, traditional methods of internal communication are being challenged (and before you ask — yes, email is still alive and kicking). In response, organizations are harnessing the power of innovative tools and integrations to foster increased engagement. These tools incentivize employees to participate in activities that produce valuable data to track engagement. Through gamification and interactive features, employees are more likely to participate and feel a sense of belonging within the organization.
Automation has become a pivotal force, transforming various aspects of business across industries. For internal communications, automation presents an array of opportunities to streamline processes, enhance efficiency and deliver more personalized communication experiences. Management plays a crucial role in promoting the initiative of leveraging automation in internal communications by providing resources, setting clear goals and encouraging a cross-functional and collaborative work culture. By using automation, companies can revolutionize how they engage and connect with their employees via the following methods:
Multi-channel distribution: Automation enables internal communicators to effortlessly distribute messages across multiple channels, including email, messaging apps, intranets and social media. By automating the distribution process, companies ensure consistent and timely delivery of information to employees, regardless of their preferred communication channels.
Content delivery: By utilizing scheduling and workflow automation tools, organizations can plan and deploy communications in advance, improving content consistency and increasing employee engagement.
Measuring analytics: Automation allows for streamlined measurement and analysis of internal communication efforts. By automating data collection, organizations can gain valuable insights into employee engagement, content performance and message effectiveness. These analytics facilitate data-driven decision-making, allowing communication teams to refine strategies and improve future campaigns.
Personalized communication: By integrating automation tools with employee data, such as job roles, locations and interests, companies can deliver tailored messages that resonate with specific audiences within their workforce. Personalized communication enhances engagement and fosters a sense of belonging among employees.
Farewell annual surveys: The power of frequent surveys and polls
Annual surveys have long been a staple in gauging employee satisfaction and engagement. However, organizations are realizing that employees perceive annual surveys as lengthy, time-consuming and irrelevant to their current needs. To improve outcomes, many companies are opting for smaller, more frequent surveys that allow for a variety of question types and customization options, letting teams gather honest feedback. Frequent surveys enable organizations to act quickly on the insights obtained. Instead of waiting for an annual survey cycle, organizations can implement changes, address concerns and make improvements in a timely manner. This agility in response contributes to a more dynamic and responsive approach. It ensures that the internal communications team can make more informed decisions based on the most up-to-date data that reflects the employee voice.
Frequent surveys allow hard-to-reach employees, who might be missed in annual surveys, to have a voice in the feedback process. By having access to more regular feedback, organizations can measure the effectiveness of their internal communication efforts and make adjustments to improve engagement and satisfaction.
Asynchronous video conferencing and AI: Transforming the employee experience
To further enhance the employee experience, internal communications teams are incorporating AI tools and asynchronous video conferencing technologies to give employees back some of their most valuable resource: time.
Asynchronous video conferencing for flexibility: Internal communications teams can leverage asynchronous video conferencing tools to host virtual town halls, training sessions or informative updates that employees can access and engage with at any time, enabling them to participate and provide feedback on their own schedules.
AI-powered tools and content for engagement: Tools like AI-powered chatbots and natural language processing assist companies in automating routine tasks and facilitating self-help for employees. Chatbots that can answer common employee questions or provide guidance on items such as company policies and procedures not only provide employees with quick access to information they need but also save time for the internal communications team. Intelligent knowledge management systems are being used to enhance and customize training programs by leveraging virtual and augmented reality, making learning more interactive and engaging. AI algorithms can analyze employees’ learning styles, strengths and weaknesses to create more customized training programs that help employees learn faster and retain information better.
By incorporating AI tools and asynchronous video conferencing into the mix, internal communications teams can create a more personalized and flexible employee experience. This approach acknowledges employees’ wellbeing while providing efficient communication channels and support mechanisms that cater to their unique needs, improving their sense of belonging.
Prioritizing the employee experience: The “Working Well” approach
Many organizations have pushed “Happy at Work” campaigns to engage employees. Happiness is a difficult metric to capture. The True North metric should be employees working well while being well.
The physical, mental and emotional health of employees directly impacts their productivity and overall satisfaction with their work. Active listening, often dismissed as a mere buzzword, is now considered a valuable skill that internal communications teams should embrace. By actively listening to employees’ concerns, needs and suggestions, organizations can create a culture that fosters a positive employee experience.
Incorporating access to mental health apps, virtual wellness programs and Employee Assistance Programs into benefit packages can also help employees with stress management and mental dexterity. It is important that employees understand they have access to these resources to assist with their wellbeing.
The culture and productivity of an organization are shaped by employee experiences that begin with effective communication. In 2024, prioritizing the employee experience requires implementing communication strategies that streamline routes while collecting engagement data.
Leveraging AI-enhanced tools such as employee surveys, intranet analytics, social media listening tools and wellness and productivity apps can effectively measure and improve employee engagement, ultimately creating a work environment that fosters satisfaction, productivity and success.
By focusing on communication and providing support, organizations can create a positive employee experience that aligns with the ever-evolving work landscape.