In the last two blogs in this series, we talked about how to consolidate HR programs and how to engage throughout the employee journey. Now, we need to discuss creative ways to engage your people and what a successful rollout should look like once your employee technology solution is in place and ready for utilization.
Employee programs should be meaningful and emotionally connect with your employees. Here are some ways to excite them about new employee programs.
Creative Ways to Get Your People Engaged
Employee initiatives can’t be chosen at random. It’s important to strategically design your employee experience programs to reach all five key areas of employee wellbeing, including performance, career, wellness, social and community. Here are some examples of creative ways to engage your people while creating a holistic employee experience.
- Provide consistent employee performance feedback – We live in a world where we want things right now. And people are used to getting immediate feedback online. It just makes sense that people want the same immediate feedback at work.
- Upskill your workforce – Upskilling, or reskilling, is a smaller investment than hiring and training a new worker. As you reskill your employees, you create a more well-rounded, cross-trained workforce and increase your team’s effectiveness. In addition to that, upskilling also improves employee retention, attracts new talent and more. Try offering career development opportunities such as a college reimbursement program, an internal online learning library or send them to the latest and greatest industry conference. Don't have a big training budget? Offer an incentive to have your people self-report their career development activities such as local lunch & learns, free Coursera classes or free industry webinars.
- Provide workplace wellness programs – Customize your wellness program with elements that appeal most to your employee audience. Creative examples might be purchasing company-branded bikes for employees to take for a spin around the office campus, offer on-site fitness classes like yoga and cycling, or boost their mental and emotional wellbeing by giving them a sabbatical option where they can take a month-long, unpaid work sabbatical after a certain number of years of service.
- Transform your culture with company events – Internal company events boost employee engagement and give them opportunities to build social connections with their peers at work. Have quarterly celebrations with refreshments to recognize new business wins and give employees a chance to socialize and network with each other. Even better, host a company-wide event such as a picnic or movie night where employees can bring their families and enjoy each other's company. According to Edward Perotti, Sr. Director of Global Meetings, Events and Travel at VMWare, “Events actually are just a part of a larger strategy to help engage employees more in the workplace and make their jobs and the places where they work a more interesting place to be.”
- Give employees volunteer-time-off options – Community involvement and volunteering make better employees. Not only does it benefit your community as a whole, community involvement also builds loyalty within your employee base, promotes leadership and builds passion in your people to further engage them, both at work and outside of work.
Check out this example of how ITA Group designed its own thriving organizational culture to get results.
How to Execute a Successful Employee Program Rollout
When rolling out your employee programs, here are a few ideas to keep in mind.
- Engage and Educate – Influence your people to take actions and exhibit behaviors that will drive your business forward. This can be done with strategic communications, training facilitation, earning opportunities, and the right solution technology. Employees want to know how their contributions move the organization forward. They want to understand how they fit in the cogs and wheels that make the business successful. That’s where you can make a human connection with your employees. You’re not just implementing a recognition program here, you’re tying all employee experience programs to the business. Every communication touch point should define those things for your people.
- Reinforce Behavior – Once your employees take the desired action, reinforce those behaviors with motivating rewards such as recognition, travel rewards or tangible rewards. Then strengthen emotional connections with them using strategic follow-up communications.
- Execute Management – Make sure you have the right partner to help you manage your solution for the short- and long-term. Having the right support can make all the difference when it comes to the ROI you get from your employee programs. Try to always have a time-of-performance mentality. When it comes to implementing a new program for your organization, bring the time-of-performance mentality to the time of purchase.
- Analyze and Optimize – Results you can expect from enhancing the overall employee experience in your organization include:
- Improved participation
- Increase in employee engagement scores
- Higher participant satisfaction
Attempting measurement on your own can be time consuming for today’s HR professional who is already wearing many hats. An employee experience solution provider should offer expert measurement so you can see exactly how your employee programs are making an impact. At ITA Group, we have a whole analytics team that’s measuring real-time results. We also have a performance guarantee, so we can work together on key metrics. And if we don’t meet your set objectives, our performance guarantee refunds your investment. Read more on our approach with Insightful Analytics.
Find out how our employee experience solutions can help you create authentic, lasting emotional connections that drive your business forward.