Remote Employee Engagement During Covid 19

How to ensure remote employee engagement during COVID-19?

While millions of people worldwide work from home to prevent the spread of COVID-19, organizations face unprecedented pressure to keep their employees engaged as they face stress and anxiety, given the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic.

Being physically away from the workplace lowers employees’ interest and hampers motivation levels.  A study by Bain & Company has found, “Engaged employees are 44% more productive than workers who merely feel satisfied.” Hence, to ensure the workforce stays healthy and engaged, leaders need to demonstrate empathy and provide clear and consistent communication and support.

Employers must find ways to leverage technology to connect employees even when they are working from diverse locations. Companies can organize virtual townhalls, virtual water coolers, and well-being programs to keep people socially connected as they work remotely.

Essentials of Employee Engagement - The “4Cs”

Working from the four walls of home takes a massive toll on the overall well-being of employees. Lack of workplace activities and difficulties in effectively collaborating with team members lead to feelings of stress and loneliness.

Organizations must follow these 4Cs to keep their employees happy and engaged amidst these challenging times –

  • Communication – Organized communication is the backbone of an enterprise. Allocating work, checking on the progress, deliberating on projects, collaborating with team members, and much more require continuous communication. Moreover, regular conversations with the team help in recognizing the early signs of anxiety and providing necessary support. Hosting video calls, in addition to emails, is an effective way of staying connected with peers and subordinates. Therefore, leaders need to adopt the right tools and technologies to break through physical barriers as employees work remotely.
  • Culture –  A deep-rooted culture is the foundation of every organization. To reinforce its culture and inculcate a sense of “the company sees you,” leaders must take small measures, such as scheduling weekly conference calls to share success stories or organizing recreational activities from time-to-time. Promoting a culture that values inclusion and individuality creates a safe space for employees to voice their concerns. Another effective method to boost an organization’s culture is to set up a network of teams that promote cross-functional collaboration.
  • Care – Leaders must display care and a deep interest in improving employee well-being. Initiatives, such as providing upskilling opportunities via online courses, promoting mental health and physical fitness through virtual yoga sessions, talks by motivational speakers, and much more, can help remote workers stay calm, focused, and feel connected.
  • Compassion – With employees working from home, the line between personal and professional life is blurring slowly. Employees are juggling new responsibilities and problems, and they need their managers to empathize and provide the necessary support. Organizing virtual family days, granting additional leaves to care for loved ones, etc. can go a long way in ensuring remote employee engagement.

Besides the 4Cs, there are a few other considerations that organizations must focus on to improve engagement in the remote setup –

  • Innovation – Innovating is complex. It requires collective brainstorming and management of conflicting thoughts to come up with unique ideas. Achieving this in an office setup is easy; however, innovation within a remote structure requires leaders to invest in powerful collaboration tools and technology.
  • Information Accessibility – While working remotely, employees need a one-stop-shop for all information relevant to their role. Sifting through multiple tabs, tools, and siloed applications is challenging and brings down employee interest, productivity, and engagement.

Build A Digital Workplace Tor Drive Remote Employee Engagement

Given that the workforce shall function remotely, at least for some time in the near future, employers must ensure scalable digital workplace tools are in place for seamless collaboration and communication.

A modern Intranet like Mesh 3.0 acts as a unified digital platform that provides employees access to core communication and collaboration tools under a single roof. It centralizes company-wide information and gives remote workers a sense of belonging.

Modern Intranets use advanced features to improve communication, collaboration, information accessibility, and sharing, and thereby help in boosting employee engagement and morale-

  • Application integration – Access to everyday applications and tools on a single user-friendly digital interface
  • Idea ManagementIdea management tools encourage employees to share ideas, brainstorm with team members and come up with innovative solutions to business problems
  • Smart Content Management System – An easy to use to content management and publishing tool, that helps employees to publish articles and stories with predefined content templates
  • Personalized Content Recommendations Personalized recommendations of daily content and company-wide knowledge based on users’ interests, profile, responsibilities, geographic location, etc.
  • Communication and Collaboration – With core collaboration features and social capabilities, including blogs, group conferencing, workspace, communities, document sharing, and project management tools, a modern intranet enables top-down and bottom-up communication in a unified interface

Thus, a modern intranet can streamline daily operations and promote remote employee engagement during COVID-19 and beyond.

Start Engaging Now!

As the world continues to stay indoors to curb any further spread of the novel coronavirus, employers need to continually innovate and develop new ways to inspire and engage remote workers. An engaged workforce is an asset to any organization – as they are in sync with the organization’s vision and goals, and have the right attitude and motivation to outperform themselves while carrying out their duties.

From organizing video conferences, webinars, virtual lunches, and town halls to introducing well-being programs, leaders are now leveraging digital workplace tools to engage remote employees effectively.

Moreover, employees must have hassle-free access to all information and tools required to perform their jobs. As discussed, a modern intranet provides a unified digital interface for tools that build productivity and ensure effective collaboration, communication, and positive employee engagement at every stage.

And while you explore the exciting world of modern intranets, you may consider having a look at Mesh 3.0. Mesh is Acuvate’s Employee Experience Platform that brings together the best of the Microsoft AI technologies (Office Graph, Azure, LUIS) to deliver the right content at the right time to the right people.