It is widely accepted that employee engagement is crucially important to the success of any business. If an employee cares about their role and the business they work for, they are much more likely to do a better job and be more committed. They are also more likely to be more happy in their role, which in itself can also lead to higher engagement and productivity.
Businesses spend an enormous amount of time and money trying to keep their teams engaged, from treating them to expensive team building days, to bringing in industry leading speakers and trainers. However there are more subtle and cost effective ways to keep employees engaged, and this guide will run over 3 of these approaches.
- Equip your team with the right tools
In order to be engaged, your team will need to get things done - fast. No one wants to spend hours and hours filling in spreadsheets manually or doing repetitive work due to a lack of software which could do the same job in seconds. This kind of work is a major drag on employee engagement and can be resolved fairly quickly by investing in the right software and tools for your team, allowing them to focus on the more interesting and engaging elements of their roles.
An HR team for example could benefit from HR systems software which generally offers a full suite of tools to enable the team to track and report important employee information, rather than having someone in the team to do this manually. Over the course of a year, you’ll be surprised how much time this can save, and how engaged it can make an employee by allowing them to focus on what they actually enjoy doing.
- Recognise and reward
It’s no secret that employee engagement can skyrocket from a supportive manager or management team. People like positive feedback, and it results in further positive behaviour. Too often rewarding good work is left simply to bonuses or designated team appraisals. Consider stepping away from the script and make an effort to acknowledge when an employee has gone the extra mile - it will almost certainly help to continue their hard work.
Don’t limit the positive feedback on a one-to-one basis. If an employee has worked extra hard to close that final deal, or worked over their scheduled time to finish off a project, share the applause with the team or even the wider business, perhaps during a quarterly meeting or even just an email with the right people cc’d. Employee recognition really matters, and can be one of the single best things you can do to keep employees engaged.
- Make time for them
As an employee, there’s nothing worse than feeling you manager does not have time for you. It can make you feel undervalued and to question your worth within the business, even if it is not the case.
If a member of the team is asking for some of your time, particularly if it is to discuss their engagement or happiness at work, try as hard as you can to make time. Think to yourself, what if it was the CEO or your own manager who was asking for this time - chances are you would make yourself available, even if you are very busy.