Remote work is here to stay! This week we think about remote working and all the ways we are maintaining remote employee engagement, while we continue to be a fully remote workforce. Join us as we discuss long-term remote working and supporting employee engagement, from onboarding buddies and video calls to time zones and virtual events.
What is Remote Employee Engagement?
Employee engagement is the evaluation of enthusiasm and dedication an employee feels toward their job and the relationship between an organization and its workers. Employee engagement for remote workers is the same evaluation, of a remotely distributed workforce.
Employee engagement is about creating a culture where staff feel committed to and have a positive attitude toward their organization. Engagement is becoming an increasingly important concept in management strategy. It is seen as a progressive way of thinking as engaged employees will lead to better organizational culture.
Organizational culture is the behavior of humans within an organization and the meaning that people attach to those behaviors. Culture includes the organization’s vision, values, norms, systems, symbols, language, assumptions, beliefs and habits. Over time the organization will develop its ‘norms’ i.e. established (normal) expected behavior patterns.
Cost of Remote Team Engagement
According to a 2017 Gallup poll, 51% of the American workforce was not engaged, while 33% were classified as engaged. Those numbers were pretty astonishing to us.
Since more than half of the workforce was not engaged pre-pandemic… that leaves us wondering what those numbers will look like now, when most people are working from their homes or doing a hybrid combination.
Gallup also reported that disengaged employees cost the US between $483 and $605 billion each year in productivity loss.
Employee Branding & Staff Engagement
Employee branding is about building a positive organizational marketing culture, as well as increasing employee engagement.
Employee branding means developing a culture where employees establish a relationship with the brand values. This promotes an on-brand attitude and behavior when dealing with customers and the team feels a commitment from employees to the organization.
An organization’s branding grows, company-wide, from the inside out, so everyone within that organization is responsible for its brand:
- What employee branding should mean to employees is the same brand promise made to staff, clients, and prospective clients.
- It should define the experience of the employee / client relationship.
- It defines the organizational culture as a whole.
How to Keep Remote Employees Engaged
Employees that work from home can often feel less engaged and connected. Here at Intellek, we have multiple ways that we instill within our organization to stay connected and engaged. We assign “onboarding buddies” to new team members, who then attend optional bi-weekly cyber chats. We have monthly meetings and our teams can give employee feedback, anonymously via Engagement Multiplier collaboration tools.
Remote Team-Building Events
Since quarter four of 2021 and for this year and beyond, our fantastic HR team has been organizing remote team-building events. Our favorite so far has to be the Virtual Escape Room. We’re excited to see what else they have in store for us!
Open Dialogue in our Company Culture
Employee recognition can play a big part. Our company culture reinforces open dialogue, and we use Motivosity to allow team members to recognize one another. A recent Survey Monkey/Bonusly survey cited that recognition can give staff confidence, which fuels their motivation.
Research on Staff Recognition
The bottom line is that data shows recognition and appreciation (promotions, cash bonuses, acknowledgments in meetings, etc.) improve engagement. Of those surveyed, 82% consider recognition an important part of their happiness at work.
In addition, LinkedIn research reported after 3 years, someone who was promoted has a 70% chance of retention, while someone who moved laterally has a 62% chance. Those with the same position after 3 years have a 45% chance of still being there.
Remote Working and Employee Engagement
It’s important to keep remote workers engaged and updated on projects, goals, team progress, client news, and company progress.
One of the best things about remote working is the flexibility it offers employees, especially in different time zones. Giving team members autonomy around when, where, and how they work, can lead to greater employee satisfaction. Working remotely can keep employees focused and productive, less stressed, and happier.
Why have a Remote and Flexible Workforce?
Flexible workforces can be beneficial to both the employer and the employee.
A flexible workforce can…
- Understand how to perform a variety of different jobs and functions within a company.
- Lead to employee engagement, address issues relating to training and development, and allow people to have a better work-life balance.
- When mutually beneficial to both the employer and employee, it will produce the most positive outcome.
Benefits for the employer:
• Retaining a wider pool of talent
• Being seen as a progressive employer, thereby attracting the best talent
• Better staff retention, keeping skilled and motivated employees
• Potential cost savings
• The ability to manage the workforce when skills gaps are identified
Benefits for the employee:
• Better work-life balance
• The opportunity to reposition their career when needed
• Increased tenure and loyalty
• Greater mobility
• Increased ability to learn new skills
• Increased sense of control
Remote Employee Engagement Driving Forces
Several factors are important in developing remote employee engagement. Here is one model by Aon Hewitt, a significant human capital and management consulting company.
This model identifies 6 Employee Engagement driving forces:
- Work activities
- Sense of accomplishment
- Senior leadership
- Valuing people
- Career opportunities
- Training and development
- Total rewards
- Company practices
- Policies and practices
- Performance management
- Brand alignment
- Company reputation
- Quality of life
- Physical work environment
- Work-life balance
How do you Increase Engagement of Remote Employees?
We would love to hear about other ways organizations are keeping their remote employees engaged. Feel free to contact us if you would like to share your approach to home working and remote employee engagement.
You can also contact our team if you would like to learn more about our new staff onboarding solutions.
Intellek (formerly TutorPro) is a founding member of the blended learning technology industry. With a presence in the USA, UK, Canada, and the EU – for over 30 years we have pioneered the development of cutting-edge eLearning software and online training solutions, with a large and diverse portfolio of international clientele.