How to leverage social media features to boost employee engagement

eXo Platform Blog

There’s no doubt that social media technology has shaped the world and changed human behavior over the past decade.

According to Statista research, 81 per cent of Americans have a social media profile and an average person spends two hours on social media every day.

In parallel to that, the latest State of the Global Workplace report highlights that nearly 85 per cent of the workforce are either not engaged at all or are actively disengaged at work.

A disengaged workforce equals lower productivity, low morale and high turnover rates. No wonder companies around the world are looking for ways to tackle this issue and improve employee engagement across the board.

While corporations aren’t using LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and the like to engage their employees, many are recognising their engaging powers and are incorporating the features that make users so attached to these platforms into their own internal communications strategy within their digital workplace.

Over the past few years, thousands of companies are adopting social media–like platforms to facilitate collaboration in the workplace, break communication silos and empower their employees to do their best.

In this article, we will see the benefits of using social media features in a corporate environment and how to leverage such features to improve employee engagement.

Community Management

The basics of community management techniques used in your company social media profiles are still relevant when it comes to managing your digital workplace communities.

Let’s say that your digital workplace has dozens, if not hundreds, of communities built around functions like sales, products, marketing, finance, engineering and events. All of these communities are creating value, which in turn will help your business achieve its goals.

The functionality of such communities is familiar to everyone as we are all, or have been, members of at least one Facebook group. We know instinctively how it works and how to interact, and in no time at all a company will feel more like a large family.

Internal communities within a company are notorious for increasing knowledge and strengthening team-working as well as for enabling increased productivity and communication.

Here is where the role of a community manager comes into play. Is he/she adding value by creating great, valuable and unique content that engages the community?

Gamification

Despite the fact that work isn’t all fun and games, many managers have come to understand that gamification tools are a great way to keep their employees interested enough to use the digital workplace and thus to build and enhance employee engagement.

From games and challenges to badges and leaderboards, the more often companies celebrate their employees, the more engaged those employees will be with their job.

Reddit is the first example that comes to mind as it’s one of the most popular and engaging sites in the world.

Besides being a human-oriented social platform, Reddit allows users to gain karma points and different kinds of badges. The more points you acquire, the more credible and trustworthy you are.

And who wouldn’t like to be a respected influencer with valuable input within the community?

Using the same principle in a more corporate environment, a manager should be looking for ways to positively influence employees so they adopt value-adding behaviour.

In practice, this translates to defining onboarding programs that allow new employees to gain badges, streamlining communication by attributing points every time someone posts something or comments on an activity, or gamifying an idea box in order to foster innovation.

You can choose how to leverage this by setting up teams, defining your scoring metrics, launching challenges, and publicizing winners & awarding tangible prizes.

Rewards and Recognition

Did you know that seven out of ten employees who receive appreciation for their work say they’re happy with their jobs?

Peer recognition, even if it often gets overlooked, is a critical building block in any strong company culture.

The professional social network LinkedIn has harnessed the power of acknowledging the role others play in a company’s successes and launched the kudos feature last year as a way to give thanks in front of colleagues and industry peers.

Likewise, companies such as ZipRecruiter have used platforms for recognition and rewards to improve employee engagement and have reported that recognising performance increases engagement by almost 60 per cent.

So, if you want to improve your employees’ communication, collaboration and adoption, selecting an employee engagement platform is a worthy investment. But recognising employees shouldn’t be left to HR alone as it’s a crucial component of your company’s success.

Conclusion

Adopting all, or even just some of these methods can make a significant and positive impact on the level of employee engagement. Done correctly, your company will undoubtedly witness increased employee morale, productivity and customer satisfaction.

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Brand & Communication Manager

I am a marketer and social media junkie. I work to optimise eXo’s online brand with content, social media technologies and digital marketing. I mainly write cartoons but I am also a big fan of topics related to internal communications in the digital workplace. I would love to connect with you, so get in touch and join our LinkedIn group ‘Intranet & Digital Workplace’.

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