Virtual Employee Engagement Ideas
13 Ways to Engage Remote Employees
Remote work has become the standard in most companies to work from home - it started with the coronavirus pandemic but seems like it’s here to stay. Consequently, there have been considerable changes to the way organizations communicate and collaborate.
While some firms used to provide remote work to give their workers a more flexible environment, it has now become the norm for most enterprises. Working from home is no longer a choice or a perk. Now that this has become standard, companies must learn to increase employee productivity through excellent communication abilities.
Ways to Keep Remote Employees Engaged
These tips will keep your employees feeling engaged and motivated - even while working from home.
1. Make Workers Feel Like They Have a Place in the Company
According to research published in The Wall Street Journal, one of the most important characteristics that distinguish successful firms from others is whether or not they provide employees with a feeling of belonging. As life becomes more polarized and hostile, employees will value a sense of togetherness at work more than ever, and it will be a critical prerequisite for encouraging advancement.
Making your employees feel like they have a place in the company can be done by establishing and building trust. This can be done by allowing yourself to trust your managers to manage their respective teams as well as giving that same trust to the rest of the employees that they will do what they're supposed to and actually have virtual employee engagement.
Trust must be deeply ingrained in your company's culture in order to ensure that you are always available to your employees, regardless of where they are.
2. Establish Goals and Objectives for Remote Work
According to studies, those who work from home accomplish their duties 30% faster than those who work in traditional offices. Employers must, however, create clear and quantifiable goals for their remote staff in order to set them up for success.
It's critical to be very clear about the roles and responsibilities of each person involved while working with remote teams, especially because communication can be difficult, and things might get lost in translation.
If you want to ensure strong virtual employee engagement among your workers who work from home, the first thing that needs to be done is to set clear expectations. Even if you promote flexibility, there should be certain standards in place to assist employees. State specifics in a remote work policy document on the working hours, how regular the meetings will be, what communication channels to use, etc.
3. Boost Your Internal Communication Approach as a Whole
An employee will feel recognized and not forgotten if there is good and open communication. Engaging remote employees will be hard if your whole communication strategy fails. As a result, businesses should prioritize efforts to improve employee interactions and engagement. This might be aided by employing the appropriate tools.
Many businesses now have virtual offices and/or staff that work from home. Make it possible for employees from across the country to keep in touch. Make an investment in video conferencing technology. There are a plethora of chat and interaction technologies available on the market, making managing a strong, effective remote workforce much simpler.
4. Constant Communication
Setting up meetings on a regular basis is essential for keeping everyone on the same page and understanding fundamental business principles. This is especially true for remote workers who don't have the opportunity to interact with their coworkers frequently.
Nonverbal communication such as eye contact and hand gestures account for a large portion of human communication. Taking it out of the picture raises the likelihood of misunderstanding, ambivalence, and conflict. You may be able to counter this as well through a video call. You can learn a lot more from a video conference than you can from a phone call or decoding a text message.
Also, don't hesitate to directly ask your employee as soon as you realize anything isn't adding up. To keep expectations clear, goals must be reaffirmed. There should be assistance in understanding and overcoming impediments to optimizing the team's performance while they are away from the office. This can be done by managers in different ways, such as through weekly and monthly meetings and across multiple channels.
5. Increase and Improve Collaboration
One of the most important aspects of increasing productivity is team collaboration. As a result, many companies are attempting to enhance how remote teams collaborate.
When you have remote employees, especially if they aren't used to working remotely, it can be difficult to build and sustain good virtual employee engagement. Your remote employees may be dealing with a variety of issues, but you won't know about them unless you inquire. Furthermore, you won't be able to observe whether your remote employees are struggling with any work-related difficulties because face-to-face time is scarce.
You can tackle this issue by taking virtual employee engagement surveys regularly, don't wait to speak to employees during the annual evaluations. At the very least, send out these questionnaires once a month. This is because it is unlikely that your remote staff would think your regular stand-up meetings are the best location for them to air their grievances. Instead, proactively gather comments and recommendations from your staff on a regular basis. Moreover, you'll be able to compare outcomes and determine if any modifications or concerns need to be addressed this way.
Keep in mind that it is a two-way street when it comes to communication, and employees will be more likely to openly offer their opinions, thoughts, and ideas if your firm has a favorable culture. Make sure to acknowledge what they've spoken so they know they've been heard. This is also a means to empower your employees.
6. Encourage Water Cooler Talk
The concept of "water cooler talk" refers to casual conversations amongst coworkers regarding non-work-related subjects. In real life, employees talk amongst themselves as personal connections make work more meaningful and pleasant and are an important element of every company's culture. Urging employees to be involved in water cooler talk is a means to demonstrate that your firm is focused on more than just signing paychecks and fulfilling KPIs even without the physical aspect.
You can create a special virtual water cooler place on any messaging app the company uses. These informal gatherings provide your team members the chance to get to know one another better. Encourage your staff to exchange news, updates, websites, and other non-work-related information. You can start by introducing a daily question, theme, or topic to further interest your staff in this water cooler discussion.
Employees may now exchange fascinating material from within the firm in real-time, thanks to new internal communications technologies.
This is also a means to step out from all the formal email conversations. With emails, people find themselves worrying about how an email will be received and whether or not it will be read, as there are chances an email may even get buried. Emails should not be the major means of communication because there are now solutions that allow for immediate communication.
7. Online Coffee Breaks
Coffee breaks at work are usually unexpected; people just walk over to a coworker's desk and offer to join them for a brief coffee break. Taking brief pauses from work to socialize with coworkers has been shown to increase employee productivity and performance.
You can adopt this by allowing your employees unplanned breaks of 15 to 30 minutes where they can gather for small talk for a while.
8. Fun Collaboration
You should make video calls enjoyable for your remote staff to keep them interested. This is a wonderful way of engaging remote employees while also sharing an element of business culture that they don't get to see as often as non-remote employees.
If you want your staff to stay interested during your video meetings, you can spice things up by adding a motif on some days, such as giving employees a chance to show their pets, let them wear costumes, etc.
9. Provide Possibilities for Career Advancement
One of the most important aspects of attracting and retaining talent is career advancement possibilities. Remote employees are frequently overlooked in this environment. Some professional progression possibilities should be offered to keep employees happy and interested.
10. Knowledge Sharing or Peer-to-Peer Feedback
The practice of exchanging expertise, knowledge, and skills among employees in a firm is known as knowledge sharing in the workplace. When workers work side by side, this process comes rather naturally; but, when employees work remotely, you must make an effort to arrange it.
Peer-to-peer feedback is an excellent approach to bring distant employees together. This is simply one more approach to foster their teamwork and communication while also allowing them to learn from one another.
You can start by training management. Leaders must recognize how to lead and manage remote personnel in order for remote teams to be active and effective. Train your managers on how to communicate effectively with your company's remote workforce. You could start a mentoring program, a book club, a discussion group, just to name a few. To find out more things you can do, don't forget to ask for virtual employee engagement ideas
11. Recognition Programs
You may consider establishing a rewards and recognition program to make this knowledge-sharing system more successful and motivating. Not only can employee appreciation enhance individual involvement, but it has also been shown to boost productivity and commitment to the organization, resulting in higher retention.
Giving public praise and appreciation to remote employees ensures that their effort is acknowledged and sends a message to peers that they're contributing. Showing your gratitude is a simple yet powerful method to encourage and inspire your remote workers. This may be accomplished by acknowledging their thoughts and suggestions, providing opportunities for growth, and increasing their responsibilities.
12. Organize Company Retreats
In general, getting together once or twice a year to discuss the company's future and develop team connections can help staff feel tied to the company.
Therefore, it is important to arrange team-building events so that distant employees may interact with one another. Team building exercises that are done online might be just as beneficial. Some individuals may even prefer them since they are more comfortable and give the same sense of camaraderie, enjoyment, and fun.
You may utilize a variety of online activities and games to aid your remote employees in getting to know one another and form better bonds. The sort of team-building you should have should be determined by your company's culture and the virtual employee engagement ideas. It might be an online gaming session, a karaoke night, or a movie night.
This can lead to increased retention, performance, and overall staff morale and enthusiasm. Moreover, managers must frequently interact in team socializing in order to foster a social connection and foster trust and inclusion among all team members. The more engaged remote employees are, the more favorable the corporate culture becomes.
13. Advocate for Your Employees
You may make your remote staff brand ambassadors boost their involvement and participation. This is a fantastic way to express your gratitude, assist them in developing their own brand, and give them a sense of belonging.
Furthermore, increasing employee advocacy offers several advantages for businesses, including the ability to increase sales, raise brand recognition, and aid in employer branding and talent acquisition initiatives.
Advantages of Remote Work
While it may seem like a difficult task engaging remote employees and trying to get them involved, the end result will always be worth it. Let's take a look at the benefits and drawbacks of remote work to get a better idea of what the workplace could look like in the future.
1. No Wasted Time on Commute
Remote work saves both time and money for your personnel, and it may also benefit your company. Every day commuting may be detrimental to your staff, particularly if we're dealing with long train or bus journeys from one destination to another.
When your employees work remotely, they may spend their time doing activities they enjoy, which will improve their satisfaction and performance in the long term.
2. Lesser Expenditure
Having space with a full force of people that constantly have to travel there, you will need to rent an office space. Having a remote group of people will save you a lot of money each month.
Additionally, having more workers work from home might help you save money on office supplies and equipment.
There are also commuting expenditures, which may eat up a significant portion of an employee's salary. As a result, it's a win-win scenario in which both employees and the firm benefit financially.
3. A Boost in Performance
Employees who work from home are more efficient than those who work in an office, according to several studies.
According to Stanford research, employees who work from home are 13% more productive on average.
4. Easier Recruitment and Higher Retention
Working from home has become a popular perk among businesses when it comes to recruiting and hiring new employees. In their daily lives, Millennials and Generation Z seek freedom and mobility. This means that it will be much easier to employ individuals in the future if you can give them the opportunity to work from home. Even if the talent originates from a distant city or nation, the possibility of remote work will undoubtedly make your hunt for outstanding talent far simpler.
5. Increased Flexibility
Your workers can plan their days as they see fit, as long as they can do their work properly and send over any deliverables required.
Remote work requires only a computer linked to the internet and a mobile phone, allowing employees to set up their work anywhere they wish. They can also organize their workstation as they like.
6. Fewer Sick Days
The amount of time spent on sick days is lower for remote workers. Remote employees typically obtain sick leave only if they have significant medical issues that need them to visit a doctor or hospital.
When considering engaging remote employees and keeping them interested, bear in mind that it's a never-ending effort to cultivate and build them. Engagement is never a one-size-fits-all solution or a once-in-a-blue-moon event. It is a constant and important process to keep remote workers motivated as they are the most valuable asset in any business.
Remember that while interacting with your team more regularly is a wonderful start, frequently helping your staff throughout the pandemic will be a continuous effort. You need to take it a step further. Listen to your virtual employee engagement ideas, invite them to express their concerns, and establish close bonds with them. It's all about creating solid connections with your staff based on trust and respect.
That is where Lanteria comes in. During the worldwide outbreak, companies all across the world have utilized Lanteria to reach, engage, and cooperate with their distant employees. Lanteria makes it easier for you to form solid relationships with your remote team.
With Lanteria, you can hire top talent with just one tool, make your brand flourish, and give prospects an experience they'll remember. Everything is simplified, from recruiting and onboarding to tracking time and performance. Reach out today to learn more!