The golden goal for managers today is building a more engaged workforce, but how do you do that? With only 32 percent of U.S. employees — and 13 percent of global employees — saying they’re engaged at work, some have said we’re in an employee engagement crisis. But with a few best practices and a bit of modern technology, engagement is sure to come.
Of course, building engagement in a highly regulated industry or organization is even more difficult because it leads to standardization, siloed departments, and a lack of innovation, but there are still ways to promote a culture of engagement and reap the rewards.
Here are three ways to chase the golden goal without compromising regulatory standards.
1. Control the data.
One of the most important elements of compliance is ensuring that the data on your employees is accurate. When it comes to audits and accountability, having a strong paper trail for your documents, interactions, and records makes life easier if regulators come looking.
A powerful way to do this is to treat your data management like a ledger of transactions. Modern cloud HR technologies allow a database and communication system to hold millions of records, mitigating risk by having information all in one place. Each request, approval, or permission sequence can be recorded by IP address or geolocation.
In the case of inquiry, this allows for high accountability and a searchable infrastructure to pinpoint what happened, when, and where — keeping you compliant and above board.
2. Improve communication.
Although the compliance burden is particularly difficult within finance or healthcare, every organization has concerns and best practices for navigating legal issues. What’s more, every organization needs to communicate clearly, no matter its situation.
One way to do this is by implementing exception reports. Who has not read your last company policy newsletter or internal communication? Keeping accurate information on “read receipts” gives you peace of mind when regulation gets tight. With a few clicks, you can create a report for executives on how many have read HR’s policies or on who has responded, and then resend the communication to those left in the dark, keeping you in the light.
Having an employee message center — one dedicated place for all company communications — is another great way to ensure quality and accountability for your internal messaging. Employees can then self-serve the communications they need when they need them.
3. Empower employee autonomy.
Perhaps the most critical factor for keeping employees engaged in the modern workplace is by providing opportunities for flexibility and autonomy. For flexibility, you might be thinking about remote workers or the gig economy, but it doesn’t have to go that far.
With cloud-based HR technology, you can leverage employee self-service to let your team schedule their days off, enroll in benefits, or onboard new hires — because the reality is that some workers need to be on-site but you still want to empower their personal ownership. Self-service technologies give them buy-in for their day-to-day lives, which builds trust and accountability. It also builds an engaging company culture, which is a primary driver for high employee engagement.
Not only does it keep them engaged in their work and create culture, but it also produces accurate record keeping and data management. When an employee manages their own information — like finding past W-2s, total compensation reports, or app browsing history — while the platform keeps track of the transactions, generating reports on this data is easier than ever.
Whether you need to stay compliant for regulatory burdens or hold employees to high standards of accountability, there is no easy solution — but there are best practices. Stay above board with modern technology and the power of a great team.