What's This ‘Always-On Engagement' Thing All About?
In the human resource industry, like most others, buzzwords are often adopted to describe certain concepts and trends. You may have heard Thymometrics mention the phrase ‘always-on’ a time or two as we describe our employee engagement technology. So, what is this ‘always-on’ thing all about? And what does it have to do with employee engagement?
New approach, new tools
Thymometrics, along with other leading HR technology firms, was mentioned by Josh Bersin in the 2016 Deloitte Human Capital Trends report and then again in January of 2017 in the Deloitte HR Technology Disruptions for 2017 report. Previous to these reports, Bersin predicted what he believed would be a growing need for organizations to embrace digital technology to reorganize and improve human capital processes. And this includes employee engagement, which we know is a challenge for many companies. Recent statistics show that:
- Only around one-third of the workforce is actively engaged at any one time (Gallup)
- $11 billion is lost each year due to employee turnover (Bloomberg BNA)
- 34% of employees indicate they plan to leave their current role in the next year (Mercer)
Bersin mentioned in his blog, ”Engagement needs to adopt an “always-on” approach.” He went on to say, “Fortunately, new solutions have emerged in the marketplace to assess employee engagement. A new generation of “pulse” survey tools and open anonymous feedback systems can allow employees to rate managers, executives, and just about everything else at work on a near-real-time basis.” The phrase was coined to indicate digital tools that can provide timely and relevant data to human resource leaders so that they can make strategic decisions. This happens in real-time, so there are no longer delays in getting feedback and ideas from employees about what motivates and inspires them. In sharp contrast to days-gone-by when all the HR manager had was a dusty employee suggestion box and the annual 360 degree survey, always-on employee engagement happens now. It’s a direct communication link between employees and human resources.
How does always-on benefit organizations?
It’s perfectly reasonable to want to know how always-on technology can provide a better return on investment than using other types of employee feedback tools. First and foremost, it can help any company to become more competitive. When employee engagement is monitored on a daily basis, it becomes clearer what’s driving success. Employees today want to be heard. According to Liz Ryan, who contributes to Forbes, communication around ‘sticky topics’ like work conflicts, compensation, changing expectations and more are often difficult to discuss with management. But an employee engagement product that offers an always-on communication channel in a safe environment can solve this problem. Trends can be spotted early. Companies that prioritize the happiness of their workforce tend to be those that also foster innovation in an authentic corporate culture. If employees are satisfied with their work, their leaders, and the impact that the company is making, these can be spotted easily by running reports from an always on employee engagement solution. Oftentimes, trends can be directly attributed to specific actions that a company is taking, and then measured closely thereafter. Perhaps no one said it better than Bersin when he mentioned, ”What started as a small idea (the concept of the “always-on engagement survey”) has now become mainstream, as companies in all industries realize that they must compete and operate based on culture. If you don’t know what your culture is and you’re not watching it on a daily basis, you can’t possibly curate and improve it."
If you'd like to find out more about how always-on engagement can be employed in your organization, speak to Thymometrics: email firstname.lastname@example.org, call +1 646 760 9323 (US) or +44 (0) 1223 750 251 (Europe) or visit thymometrics.com. Image courtesy of Naypong at FreeDigitalPhotos.net