5 ways to boost employee engagement with interactive technology

Use these tactics to encourage better collaboration and teamwork throughout your workforce.

Digital collaboration tips

Did you know that employee disengagement has reached epidemic proportions?

According to a Gallup poll, just 20 percent of all employees questioned said they felt “actively engaged” in the workplace.

More than 50 percent claimed they weren’t engaged at all.

That’s half of the workforce just going through the motions, doing the bare minimum while watching the clock.

Just think how much more productive your organization could be if you could increase engagement by encouraging collaboration in the workplace.

Interactive technologies offer a wide variety of ways to engage even the most steadfast stick-in-the-mud. We’ve collected five of our favorite ways of using interactive technology to boost employee engagement:

1. Encourage collaboration.

Engaging the individual starts with the team.

Indeed, “collaboration” has become the business buzzword of 2018, as more and more businesses recognize its value in increasing productivity and employee engagement.

Working together helps employees feel that their efforts are contributing towards a whole, supporting both their colleagues and their own project milestones.

Interactive displays are a superb way of bringing a team together. They provide a central focus, allowing each team member to contribute real content towards a tangible central hub. Each participant’s digital device can interact with the content on the screen, sharing ideas, creating open feedback channels and facilitating remote access for colleagues in other physical locations.

Being part of a collaborative team doesn’t always mean that everyone needs to be chained to their desks, though. Interactive displays promote remote access.

2. Facilitate remote working.

A study by the TUC found that by 2020, half of the workforce will be working remotely. Between 2012 and 2016, the study discovered, remote working increased by almost 250,000 people over the previous decade.

Mobile and remote working has become more and more possible thanks to interactive technologies, and there’s plenty of evidence to suggest that flexible working increases employee productivity.

The challenge of having a team spread across various locations is entirely surmountable with the growing catalogue of interactive tools to keep the team together, whether they’re working from home or across sites.

On a simple level, file-sharing applications such as Dropbox and Google Drive offer a central hub for shared documents and group collaboration.

But there are more holistic project management hubs, available through apps or standard internet browsers that offer secure group interaction. Check out:

3. Focus on forging social and personal connections.

Providing a means for your team to communicate on a social level increases collaboration and workplace engagement.That doesn’t mean you just let everyone sit on Facebook all day.

A growing number of social platforms are designed for business, offering employees the opportunity to chat and organize social events while discussing business ideas.

Networks such as Microsoft’s Yammer offer a familiar, Facebook-like platform with a timeline and a feed that keeps everyone in touch.

Additionally, Slack and Flock offer chat room-style platforms for keeping everyone in sync with each other.

Social interaction using interactive technologies helps employees bond, share information pertinent to the job and feel that work is a more manageable element of their life as a whole.

4. Use gamification.

Nothing brings a team together more than a unified goal. You can motivate your staff to work together by bringing a little gamification into the workplace.

Employees want recognition just as much as financial rewards, so spur a little of their natural propensity to compete. Get groups to work together to reach targets faster, with greater focus.

Using social platforms such as Yammer and Slack, you can make everyone’s progress visible, creating a fun arena for groups to battle to the top.

More industry-specific ideas are available here.

5. Bring your own device (BYOD).

The majority of us are glued to our mobile devices. Millennials, particularly, use mobile devices almost instinctively to organize both their work and social lives.

Statistics from Cisco suggest that 60 percent of us would choose to use a mobile device for both work and personal use, rather than a laptop; 70 percent of HR professionals believe that millennials perform more efficiently when using their own mobile devices instead of computers.

Modern work is about flexibility. If people work faster on their own devices, let them use them. BYOD is not a flash in the pan.

Boosting employee engagement is about recognizing how people perform at their best, and the wealth of interactive technologies available to us have that flexibility as standard. Consider how you can adapt your workplace culture with interactive tech to help each individual achieve a shared goal.

Natalie Harris-Briggs is the VP of marketing at Avocor.

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