When looking back at the past year, lots have changed. Digitization has increased tremendously across the world. Voluntary? Definitely not. The COVID-19 pandemic swept across continents, resulting in a lot of business that had to close shop. For people that are working in the service industry, this meant that they should start working from home. Although this has provided benefits to employees, there are also many pitfalls. An important one is the employee engagement. What does this mean and how can you measure it as an organization?

Employee engagement when working from home

In a traditional setting, employee engagement would refer to how employees feel about their company. Are they aligned with the vision? What do they think of their colleagues? With people now working from home, this has become a bit blurry. There is no shared office space that defines the company and the vision is merely a piece of text on the website. Well, luckily there is still culture. However, also this is more difficult to stick to in times of a pandemic.

Employees are less productive

These effects have become clear to many chief executives and entrepreneurs. There has been a serious productivity drain across industries. One of the common complains is the lack of commitment to the organisation as well as an increased workload. With managers not being able to see what their employees are doing, suspicion should not drive them in how they think of their employees. Instead, they should focus on the positive aspects and share the feelings across the group.

Measuring engagement

Of course it is nice to talk about a concept, but how can we measure it and act upon it? Understanding the current situation is as important as the target you have in mind. With simple conversations, you can already get started to understand what is top-of-mind for employees. Have sessions in small groups where you discuss the current situation. How are people feeling about their project(s), work-life balance and other items that are a burning platform to the employees.

Act on the outcomes

Once you have clear what your employees are thinking, you can create concrete actions that can improve this. This does not have to be a bingo session on Zoom, but can also be the sharing of news among the group. For example, a newsletter with updates on projects can already be a good start to boost engagement across project teams. Having ambassadors in teams can also help you to better understand the effects of such measures.

Use dedicated measurement tooling

Besides these informal conversations, it is also possible to measure the engagement through specialized solutions. One of the leaders in the field is https://www.effectory.com/. They provide a broad range of analytical and survey solutions that provide insight in teams and across teams, even allowing you to benchmark with industry-peers. The tooling also provides you with concrete next steps you can take to help boost the engagement and productivity.