With the rise of digital transformation and innovation, we have entered the age of hyper personalization. Right from the ecommerce websites we shop at, to web streaming services we use, all suggestions are customized to suit our personal expectations and choices. In such a situation, it is only fair that the future of employee engagement also be about personalization. Using a cookie cutter approach to employee engagement is done and dusted. Each employee is unique and has different needs and expectations. While this has been the case for a long time, today technological innovations are making it possible to gather and analyze the necessary data that forms the bedrock for personalization. Organizations need to personalize the experience for every employee to ensure maximum productivity and robust performance.
Future of Employee Engagement: Personalize Today
Organizations that seek to be at the forefront of employee engagement need to embark on the journey of personalization today. Following are a few bases to consider in the organizational journey to personalization towards the future of employee engagement:
- It all starts with recruitment
Most organizations believe that employee engagement starts after employee onboarding. However, in effect, it starts from the first time a potential employee reads about an open position and applies for the same. It is very important for organizations to invest time and energy into identifying what competencies each role requires. Adding a few attributes to make the role more appealing to the target group is the perfect recipe for personalization for the future of employee engagement. Therefore, organizations that seek to hire on the basis of role suitability based on hyper personalization are the ones that have most impressive engagement scores.
- Redefining the work environment
Side-by-side desks, 9-5 schedule and in office work no longer excite or motivate today’s knowledge and creative workers to unleash their full potential. Organizations need to breed employee engagement by redefining the way their teams work. Offering the option of working from home and working at flexible timings when the creative energy is at its peak can be starting points. At the same time, organizations should take into consideration employee opinion and voice when deciding the office decor, cubicle architecture, type of meeting rooms, etc. This will enable employees to create a working space that engages, attracts and boosts them with positive vibes.
- Personalizing the learning curve
To a major extent, effectiveness of employee engagement is a function of the effectiveness of learning and training sessions. With multiple sources of knowledge available today, it would not be wise to consider that all your employees are at the same starting point for any training session. At the same time, they might also have completely different ideas of what they wish to train in and how they seek to consume the knowledge. Therefore, to ensure robustness in the future of employee engagement, organizations need to personalize the whole learning experience. This includes the training being offered which should be in tandem with personal gaps and needs of the employees. Also, the delivery of the same should be in different formats, following a blended approach of in-person sessions, online webinars and live sessions, as well as e-learning courses.
- Different levels of management and task allocation
It is not only about personalizing how employees work and what they learn, but also redefining the organizational structure and what work they engage in. Firstly, personalization for the future of employee engagement calls for differing levels of management. While some employees feel more engaged at work when their superiors are constantly managing over them and they engage in active reporting, others despise such micro managing and desire greater freedom and autonomy. Organizations need to gauge the pulse of every employee and manage them accordingly. Secondly, task allocation requires personalization as well. This means that organizations need to comprehensively understand the competencies and interests of every employee and divide work accordingly. Not only will this keep the employee more motivated and engaged, it will also augment the output, performance and productivity.
- Customizing the communication
Gone are the days of business leaders addressing the whole organization with the same stroke of paint. Today, with digital disruption, there is a possibility of customizing communication to make the whole narrative more personal for the employee to connect to. Organizations can start with simply addressing the employees with their names in every email, rather than simply writing, “Hi all”. Further, tweaking every communication to the context of every employee can go a long way into personalizing employee engagement.
The bottom line here is that the future of employee engagement will thrive on hyper personalization of the whole experience. Thus, organizations need to scrap the one size fits all approach and personalize every step of the employee lifecycle.
Taking the First Step
Personalization of employee engagement practically requires a transformation of the entire organizational culture to ensure a consensus towards personalization. At the same time, organizations need to leverage the right technological tools and data points to ensure maximum effectiveness. For instance, collecting and analyzing employee data via different surveys, application forms etc, can be a good starting point to commence the personalization journey. To conclude, it is safe to say that there are a plethora of unexplored avenues for organizations to unveil and personalize their employee lifecycle to facilitate greater engagement, leading to better performance.