What is Employee Engagement?

Oftentimes, the answer to a question is colored by one’s perspective. There are many perspectives on what employee engagement means to an organization. Some are presented from the perspective of recognition and morale, others from the perspective of corporate communications. My perspective has always been driven by the technology solutions people seek to help solve employee engagement challenges. In my world, the lens for answering this question starts from the perspective of “we need an Intranet.” Now, an intranet is rarely the panacea to all of one’s employee engagement challenges, but the reasons why people seek Intranets as a solution to employee engagement can help us frame up an answer to the question.  

 

Perspective #1: Organizations Engaging the Employee 

“We can’t effectively communicate relevant information with our employees.” The “we” in this example is oftentimes corporate communications. In this instance, the value an Intranet provides is supporting the organization’s ability to reach all employees with relevant updates. Today, the term “Intranet” goes beyond a website… more on that in a future post. 

 

Perspective #2: Employees Engaging the Organization 

“We can’t find anything.” This is the bottom-up perspective on Employee Engagement. When employees need to find information from the organization and can’t, the resulting frustration hampers the organization’s ability to engage employees. An Intranet is oftentimes viewed as the solution, but the reality is how you organize and classify information is more important.  

 

Perspective #3: Employees Engaging One Another 

“We need a better way to collaborate.” How an Intranet supports this facet of employee engagement is less about going to the Intranet to collaborate, and more about how the Intranet supports the collaboration tools your employees are using. Personalization is key so employees can find all their teams (private groups) and discover communities (public groups). 

 

There is no doubt that employee engagement is a broader topic than my technology lens. That being said, it’s the perspectives that matters most, because underneath those perspectives are the real employee engagement challenges organizations face in today’s digital workplace.  

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