Mobile-first employee engagement has been a hot topic in the last few years. More and more, companies are realizing that connecting to and engaging with employees on their mobile devices makes sense, especially when you consider that it’s predicted 67% of the population worldwide will own cell phones in 2019.
Not only does an increasingly large percentage of the population own cell phones, but 85% of those phones in the U.S. are smartphones. And we love to check our smartphones. It’s estimated that the average user checks their smartphone 52 times a day.
If you want to increase engagement with your frontline employees, you have to find a way to engage them in a way they’re used to, through their phones.
Engaged employees care more, work harder, miss less work, and help cultivate an exceptional workplace culture. In fact, WorkJam found that 50% of managers with employees who aren’t engaged, felt that more engagement would let them achieve—at a minimum—up to 10% in additional revenue.
Embracing phones as tools of the job through a mobile-first engagement strategy, can transform the way you engage with your frontline employees and help create an environment your customers love to frequent.
4 best practices
To help you get the most out of your mobile-first approach to engagement, we put together some best practices for you to follow in order to help maximize employee engagement.
1. Get on a platform
If you live in a world where your employees have 12 different systems they need to log into to get company information, then a platform with a single sign-on offers a more efficient and cost-saving solution. The extraordinary thing about using a digital workplace platform (like WorkJam) is that you eliminate almost all the hassle that comes with managing multiple systems by just having one place your employees need to go to access everything.
Your employees can get their payslips, schedules, and training all on one platform that’s mobile-first and ready to use on their device. They can also trade shifts, message each other and their managers, and get product information from company experts right at their fingertips. The consolidation of systems integrating into one platform extends the functionality of existing technology investments and presents the opportunity to shutter legacy technology systems. Further, when your employees have easy access to the information they need to do their jobs, not only will their engagement with the company increase, so will their engagement with your customers.
2. Personalize your brand experience
A platform that reflects your brand’s look, tone, and feel allows you to expose your employees to your brand every day, turning your frontline workers into brand ambassadors. And, it allows you to do so in such a way that your workforce can adapt to the goals and mission of the organization.
This enables you to effectively roll out marketing campaigns and board room initiatives with efficiency, leading to a stronger ROI on corporate initiatives.
Any employee facing technology that doesn’t reflect your brand, doesn’t help you achieve the level of engagement you’re looking for.
When Ulta Beauty deployed WorkJam they saw an immediate impact. The social network effect of a mobile-first digital workplace not only drove organic engagement, but it also allowed their employees to see what was happening elsewhere in the company and feel connected to the global brand.
3. Foster two-way communication
If you want to increase mobile-first employee engagement, encourage bilateral communication. Communication is a big part of leadership. When your frontline has access to new product information, directions, or personalized messages from leaders (through a digital workplace) it makes the teams feel more engaged with the company. Not only do they have the power to access the information they need when they need it but they also have a way to interact with their leaders, provide feedback, and ask questions.
All too often frontline employees have to go through managers to communicate with anyone who isn’t on the frontlines. That includes departments like payroll, HR, and operations. Giving your employees access makes them feel more in control of their work lives and helps them take matters into their own hands for things like training and scheduling while freeing managers from mundane tasks.
Fostering communication also means giving employees a way to engage with each other, a crucial ingredient for cultivating an exceptional workplace culture.
4. Encourage healthy competition
Gamification could give your frontline employees more incentive for adopting the digital workplace. WorkJam, for example, offers a badges and rewards system that encourages training. When training becomes a game—such as a mission or a scavenger hunt through the store, or an interactive quiz about new products—learning happens naturally and the knowledge employees gain tend to stick.
Employees can also earn points by completing new training. These points can be used to earn badges and gifts from partner companies. Leaderboards can even be set up to encourage friendly competition among frontline staff using this point system.
Lowering attrition is also possible through rewards and recognition. By receiving recognition for mastering new skills or hitting sales targets, you empower staff to work hard and make them feel like part of the larger company culture. Earning badges or “leveling up” through gamified processes gives your employees a sense of digital seniority that enhances loyalty and compels them to stay.
A truly engaged workforce transforms your frontline employees into cheerleaders for your brand. They put more effort into doing the jobs they’ve been hired to do, they’re more inclined to stick around longer, and, perhaps best of all, they help cultivate the kind of culture that they can thrive in, making you an employer of choice.
A properly executed mobile-first engagement strategy—that follows the guidelines we recommend above—can provide your frontline employees with the tools they need to create that legendary culture and help your business grow as a result.