The employee communication app is the new employee newsletter, on steroids. Gone are the days when employees have to check their email inbox to learn about the new developments in the company. These days, employees expect an app to deliver relevant news and do much more.
The Livetiles Employee Communication report defines an employee communication app as the app used for communication and collaboration, allowing every member of an organization to stay informed, engaged, and productive. Ideally it is mobile-first and any member of the company from— from the boardroom to the lunchroon—can access essential and personalized news anytime, anywhere.
Optimizing the functions and features of the old office setting into a platform that’s accessible online is one of the many ways organizations can deliver a better employee experience. Below, we share some of the many benefits of this approach in the modern workplace.
One platform for every kind of digital employee
A WillisTowersWatson survey revealed that 52 percent of employees have reported high to moderate anxiety (while 66 percent reported distraction from the job at hand) when their employers made changes during the pandemic. One way to ensure a smoother transition through change for all is by providing an employee communication app that’s accessible to any employee, anytime, anywhere.
With many businesses adopting a hybrid work set-up, employees would want a single platform to access anything they may need from the company—from answers about their benefits to a one-on-one session with a supervisor. However, companies must recognize that such applications should also be flexible enough to meet the needs of different employees whether in the office, warehouse, or frontline. Format and content should be tailored to help them do their jobs better (and safer) while promoting a work culture based on social connection and inclusion.
Such an app may also be a chance for an organization to get a better understanding of their employees. Whereas before, organizations would have to rely on occasional employee surveys and insights from managers to check the pulse of the workforce, an employee communication app can provide data that will show pain points of the company, in real-time.
The Deloitte Tech Trends 2021 report had already noted: “[Digital workplace] tools can help employers gain insights ranging from individual employee performance to team-level productivity to companywide morale, enabling them to identify patterns and make predictions”.
For example, the time staff open the app can give employers insight if their employees are most productive in the morning or at night, which may be beneficial the next time they review office hours. Meanwhile, an app that has content, whether video or text, about work benefits, may give employers a peek at which offerings are the ones employees are most interested in.
Collaboration in real time
The same app can now also serve as the digital lab to seed, crowdsource or cultivate ideas, giving managers and executives plenty of inspiration for innovation with real-time collaboration. The same Deloitte report emphasized this, saying the digital workplace had democratized “formerly privileged exchanges of ideas”. With the entire workforce now online and accessible to anyone in the company, the next best product or innovation can now come from anywhere too.
At the end of the day, the employee communication app must be centered on the needs of the employee. As a WillisTowersWatson survey revealed, a better employee experience will only be possible with a plan that is technology-enabled and integrated with an organization’s business strategy. Such a plan would drive engagement, employee wellbeing, productivity, and in turn, overall business performance.
An employee communication app may be equipped with high-tech features, and even designed by an award-winning team, but if it is not what the employee needs, it is at risk of being irrelevant and unused.
As Gallup said: “Today’s employee is a consumer of the workplace. A tech tool that allows them to do their best at work—therefore highlighting their purpose—is the one that they will use.”