How can HR vendors support companies to achieve employee engagement?

Mats Nemelka , Advisory HR Solution Consultant EMEA @ Servicenow

Mats Nemelka, Advisory HR Solution Consultant EMEA @ Servicenow


“Employee engagement” refers to an employee’s job satisfaction, loyalty and inclination to expend discretionary effort toward organizational goals, says Bersin by Deloitte.

It is the concept of keeping someone involved, motivated and most importantly committed to the organization’s success. 

It is no surprise that Bersin by Deloitte found out as part of its study from 2016 that “employee engagement has become the top issue on the minds of business leaders, directing us to an entirely new model of management”.

To achieve employee engagement, it requires more than just providing perks or a salary increase to employees.

Laszlo Bock, former Senior Vice President of People Management at Google, underlines this in his new book. He describes amongst many other things how Google achieves employee engagement and eventually the possibility to retain their best talent. He says people only stay at Google for two reasons - The quality of the people they work with and the feeling that the work they do is meaningful. He also adds that the perks Google might be famous for it is a nice-to-have, but definitely not the reason why people stay at Google or not grab the next job opportunity that is for sure just around the corner in the Bay Area.

Technology plays also a more important role these days. And modern technology is not just a generation Y thing. The iPhones and Androids have taken over in any generation and are shaping the way we interact, communicate and work. It is a prerequisite for every company to offer modern technology to their employees. 

Employee Engagement

A normal worker gets up in the morning with their mobile phone; in fact the Deloitte Global Mobile Consumer Survey from 2016 found out that 78% of the people use their mobile phones within the first hour after waking up. This continues while having breakfast and especially when commuting to work on the train, the smartphone has become our best friend. 

In order to foster engagement amongst employees, organizations should become part of this morning ritual and this has never been easier then with today’s cloud technology. Modern HCM technology can play a key role here, but how? 

1.) The basic: It needs to be mobile friendly. 

It sounds like a “normal” thing but in fact most companies still do not provide employee self-service functionality that is mobile friendly. Booking nice holidays with the beloved ones often requires a first look at your current payslip, have I been paid? Secondly a look at the team calendar can also be useful, has anyone else already booked holidays on those days? Once all this has been cleared successfully an employee should simply be able to book his holidays right from any device and anytime. But how often is this simple use case already reality?  

2.) User Experience (UX) is key!

When you follow the trends in the UX area then you hear more and more about Artificial Intelligence as being the new User Interface. Based on the user’s behaviour, mixed with a lot of data, the solution automatically provides you with your desired information. This is the future and all the big players are working on it. But the reality nowadays is that companies do not even offer a compelling user experience to their employees. According to Oracle “the user experience needs to make work processes more efficient through light, interactive tasks and pull in the things around you that pertain to your job easily and quickly.” The user experience needs to be that attractive and easy to use so that no training is needed and the employee instantly feels familiar with it.

3.) Career Development at any point in time

It is a lot of time and money every company invests in order to source and find a great employee. But it is an even bigger challenge to keep that talent. High potentials need to have the opportunity to grow and learn at any point in time. Leading cloud HCM technology can support companies with that and gives the employee the chance to pro-actively drive his next career step. A modern system recommends in a smart way potential next career steps and offers directly related learning items. The employee has clear transparency into what skills are required for his next step and he can simply take an offline learning course on his way to work in the morning in order to improve on a lagging skill.  If needed the system also offers matching mentors that can further support on his journey.

A Gallup poll found out that “only 13% of workers are engaged at work”. It is about time to do everything possible to increase this figure. Digital HR can play a key role as it fosters engagement through the simple fact that an employee can access their day to day activities and tasks at any point in time. Every improvement in terms of employee engagement results in serious revenue growth for the company.  

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