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Improve digital employee experience & create a sustainable work-from-home culture 

This year has forced organizations, both large and small, to reconsider nearly every aspect of office life. 

Some ways of working, such as travelling to the office and attending in-person meetings have been discarded, leaving organizations to find ways to keep employees engaged, connected and social, virtually. For employees wondering what the workplace of the future might look like, there’s no doubt that it will certainly involve an increased use of technology.

Some organizations have already fully embraced the long-term benefits of working from home. In fact, Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter, has told his employees that they can continue working from home ‘forever’. Likewise, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, quickly followed with his own announcement that employees may continue to work from home. Slack CEO, Stewart Butterfield, has also announced that the company was going to allow employees to work from home indefinitely.

While remote work isn’t new to the workplace, many companies and employees are adapting and finding ways to increase the digital employee experience and improve engagement. 

What if employees always worked from home

The Digital Employee Experience

The recent exponential rise in workplace technology and a shift towards remote work has an impact on the digital employee experience and the overall engagement of employees. 

By fostering efficiency, innovation and growth with digital tools, you can improve the digital employee experience and increase engagement for everyone across your organization. An intelligent, Digital Workplace is the essential tool at the heart of this.

5 ways to enhance the digital employee experience for remote workers 

Digital Workplaces are key to improving employee experience and increasing engagement. Here are five ways you can leverage them for a positive and connected remote work culture. 

  1. Create a culture of collaboration and connection

As humans, we crave contact and connection with other people. Unfortunately, working remotely can be a lonely place for many employees. However, organizations that provide tools to support social connections in the workplace and help workers to connect and collaborate build a successful workforce.

It’s not simply about the wellbeing of employees. A Digital Workplace enables workers to share ideas, innovate and solve customer challenges in real time. Success quickly translates into commercial benefits and employee retention.

  1. Learning and development opportunities

According to LinkedIn’s 2018 Workforce Learning Report, 93% of employees would stay at a company longer if it invested in their careers. That being said, learning and development opportunities signal that an employer values their workers and that the organization is interested in their success.  

A Digital Workplace enables an organization to meet learners where they already are––aligning the aspirations of their workers with development opportunities. Easily accessible, mobile apps and comprehensive interfaces, it can be a great tool to help employees reach their potential.

Once again, there are significant commercial benefits to creating learning opportunities as well. This year, many organizations are undergoing significant transformation, requiring different employee skills and capabilities for advancement.

  1. Enable employees to do their jobs more effectively

In many organizations, employees are busier than ever. Email and information overload can be overwhelming, and when coupled with complex systems that are difficult to navigate and documents that are hard to find, employees are often left feeling frustrated. 

As the distinction between employees’ personal and professional life dissolves, employees expect the same access to consumer grade technology at work as they do at home. A Digital Workplace can create a paradigm shift in their digital employee experience by removing the friction from day-to-day work. 

By facilitating easy access to information, documents and people all in one place, it can deliver the right information to the right people at the right time, making it much easier for workers to be productive and do a great job. 

From a commercial perspective, there are considerable cost savings and efficiencies to be gained from this approach.

  1. Create a shared sense of purpose and success

Employees find meaning when they see a clear connection between what they spend time doing and what they value. Research repeatedly shows that people deliver their best effort and ideas when they feel they are part of something larger than the pursuit of a paycheck. Giving employees a clear sense of how their work is making a difference can have a profound and long lasting impact.

Through compelling communications and sharing stories of colleagues who are embodying the purpose of an organization, a good Digital Workplace can help bring this to life at both a global and local level. 

  1. Recognize and reward good performance

Employees want to feel that their work is valued and noticed, but in today’s economic environment, many organizations are reluctant to award significant bonuses and pay increases. 

A Digital Workplace can be a great tool to say ‘thank you’ and recognize good work. From crowdsourcing nominations for the ‘team member’ of the month and celebrating sales wins, to sharing positive customer feedback and simply ‘liking’ a blog post, an online tool is a great way to call out individual and team successes. Celebrating individual successes is a personal touch which has a meaningful impact on motivation and engagement.

Engaging Remote Employees – The 3 ‘P’s

You won’t get anywhere improving the digital employee experience without keeping them engaged. 

The ability to motivate and retain talented employees is essential in the current business climate, especially when working from home, and creating a great culture and employee experience are key. 

Why? Engaged employees are likely to be more productive, innovative and customer focused.  But how do you do this in a climate of uncertainty and change. The ‘3 Ps’ is one employee engagement best practice model:

  1. Purpose 

Connecting people with a cause that they care about gets people out of bed in the morning. This means it’s a good idea to help employees see the big picture about why they do their jobs and inspire them to meet stretch goals and tackle impossible challenges. They will overcome obstacles if they care about the outcome.

Most people have heard the famous story of the time that US President John F. Kennedy was visiting NASA headquarters for the first time in 1961. While touring the facility, he introduced himself to a janitor who was mopping the floor and asked him what he did at NASA. “I’m helping put a man on the moon!” said the janitor. He understood the vision, his part in it, and he had purpose.

  1. Potential

Enabling employees to learn and grow so that they can become the best version of themselves means that they are able to develop their careers, see their potential, and perform at a higher level. Not only does this encourage employees to stay with an organization, it also increases institutional knowledge that they can share with their colleagues.

  1. Play

A balance of work and play can transform your employee experience and engagement. 

Encouraging collaboration to solve customer and business challenges allows employees to innovate and achieve their goals, ultimately contributing to strong business performance.  

It’s also important to feel like you’re part of a team working on a task that makes people more motivated as they take on challenges. Finding easy and fun ways for people to collaborate boosts performance and success.

Improve the digital employee experience 

2020 has provided a rare opportunity for individuals and organizations across the globe to radically rethink the way we work and live, taking the digital employee experience to new heights. 

Employee experience, engagement and success rely on digital transformation and the digital tools you implement in this digital age. Digital tools like digital workplaces transform the way organizations work and communicate. 

Today’s modern workforce is more mobile, collaborative, dynamic, and multi-generational than ever before. With employees working from home, digital workplace tools enable employees to collaborate and communicate as if they were working in an office. 

Larraine Solomon

Larraine Solomon

Communications and Change Consultant