Infographic: 8 Employee Engagement Best Practices for 2019
Engaged employees are happy employees. And more than just happiness, recent Gallup research has shown that engaged employees lead to real business outcomes: 21% increase in productivity, achieve four times more earnings-per-share (compared to competitors), and can lead to 81% higher customer satisfaction.
Our Employee Engagement Survey
We’ve culled the data points from over 300 million SocialChorus customer events to pull together our best practices to help Communicators engage with their employees in the most effective way. See below for our recommendations from what we discovered, and download our infographic here.
Employee Engagement Stats
1. Collaborate With Your Team
It may sound obvious to teams that are stretched thin (some of our customers have ratios of 1 communicator to 20,000+ employees!) but sharing the communication workload leads to better results. Our data shows that having at least five Program Managers contributing to your program greatly enhances your program’s strength, engagement, and reach. And these don’t just have to be Communicators in title either.
Collaborating with your team and across the organization (with team managers from different departments and locations) is part of the idea of decentralized communications. It is the modern way to rethink the way your organization communicates, and it is when internal communicators become curators, not just content creators.
What is decentralized internal communications?
Rather than the typical approach of top-down communications, employees and teams are given a voice. It may not be as polished, but it will be authentic. And authenticity counts today.
Many of our customers are using this decentralized communication style to recognize employee accolades and improve the employee experience.
Internal communicators are not being replaced but become strategists and leaders in employee engagement. Read more in our recap of FutureComms 2019.
2. Run More Reports Each Month.
We’ve seen that the customers that run more reports about their communications programs actually have higher click-through-rates of their content. How does this happen? Our hypothesis is that the more reports they run, the more insight they have into their content, and the more they can optimize. Knowledge is power!
And it’s more than knowledge. It’s building an internal communications program that tests new ideas, measures its performance, and creates actionable insights to continually improve.
We often hear that communicators want to track more metrics and learn from them because today businesses make decisions based on data analytics.
Here’s a simple method to get started on measuring your content.
- Set your goals and KPIs. This is critical to get started the right way. By defining your objectives, you’ll understand what you are working toward and what success for your company looks like.
- Study your audience of employees. Create employee personas using our easy-to-use template, so you can understand how best to communicate with them. You’ll pinpoint their roles and what channels they prefer.
- Identify the best metrics to measure your success. For example, if you are sending out communications for HR benefits enrollment, your metric could be how many people signed up.
- Create reports to share with your team and leaders. This step is critical. By tracking and measuring over time, you will have the data to gain insights into your program. And using a workforce communications platform with unified analytics will allow you to easily generate reports to form actionable insights.
- Rinse and repeat. This will lead you on the important path of testing, learning, and improving. And don’t be afraid to make mistakes and have setbacks. That’s how you learn, and reporting is essential to your success.
Read more on how to measure your content in our How to Measure Internal Communications series.
3. Publish Important Content In The Morning
Our data found a disconnect of when most content is published and the majority of employees are checking in with corporate messages. Close the gap and increase employee engagement by scheduling the most posts early in the morning – to get more eyeballs. Our new Content Planner tool makes this even easier.
By scheduling communications with our planner tool, you can create and plan in advance. Also, team members could create content in draft form to have managers or editors review the content before final publication.
Scheduling the content has revolutionized many internal communications programs. Communicators no longer need to physically push the button to send out content at a specific time. They can now automate this task and free up more time for strategy and planning.
Also, it is a good idea to test different communication types (videos, links, under-generated) at different times. Every audience and company are different.
4. Maintain Weekly Activity In Your Channels
Don’t create a channel just to check a box – make sure there is a game plan. The best channels (as valued by higher click-through rate) have new content published, specific to those channels, each week.
When Ciox Health launched their new internal communications program, they carefully mapped out their channels and rolled them out gradually. Rather than offer an overabundance of new channels, they wanted to make sure each one was relevant and necessary.
And by slowly rolling them out, employees were excited by them, knew what they were to be used for, and retention and engagement remained high.
5. Expand Your Channels
While we’re talking about channels… make sure you have the optimum amount. Channels can be focused by region, role, content type, or major initiatives at the company. Many CEOs even have their own channel so they can communicate directly with employees. The most effective programs we’ve seen have 18-20 channels that, as mentioned above, they are updating with new content at least weekly.
Part of expanding channels is allowing teams, departments, and locations to publish their own native content because regions and teams have their own needs. And these could be channels overseen by specific managers. For example, a frontline manager could manage a channel about her specific plant.
On the other hand, by allowing everyone to have their own channel (about anything under the sun) can create noise and too much of a good thing.
Learn more about our new Channel Management along with three more features we recently launched to help communicators streamline their workflow and improve governance with their communications.
6. Encourage Program Managers To Publish 70% Of Posts
We have a lot of new user-generated content features available (where employees can publish articles, images, links, and even videos within your approval controls) – which is great to stimulate more content. However, make sure that you strike the right balance by having 70% of content still coming from the Communicators – to follow the best practice of the top programs we see.
User (employee) generated content gives your workforce the recognition and the voice they crave. Yet your internal communications is also the single source of truth from headquarters and leadership. The balance of 70% admin posts and 30% user-generated offers the right mix that makes your content engaging and informative.
7. Create Highly Shareable Content
Many communications programs serve dual interests – to align employees, but to also let them share content with their networks. Earmark up to 10 posts a week as shareable – and explore different content types other than links (like images, videos, and articles) as well.
Your employees are often your biggest advocates. They help you recruit and retain the best talent and can be the face of your organization. Shareable content could be press hits about what’s going on, company news that is externally facing, or events that you want workers to share with the public.
By offering content that is easy to share, employees feel involved and important to the company and leadership.
8. Create And Post More Videos
It is the age of video, and it’s never been easier to create and share great video content. Need a refresher? Check out our Video Like a Boss webinar – it’s a must-see free resource for creating compelling 60-second videos seemingly on the fly.
Video content receives up to 50% more engagement than other types of posts. Make it part of your leadership team’s weekly plan to get a new video out to employees each week. It can even be fun.
And the video doesn’t need to have a huge budget. With a workforce communications platform, communicators and even leaders can easily use their phones to shoot simple (zero-budget) videos that are authentic and informative. These type of videos show that leaders are regular people and that they care about their workers, which is what employees want.
Learn how a workforce communications platform can transform your internal communications and help you reach and engage your employees. Schedule a demo today.