May 15, 2023
4 min read
Whether a company offers in-person, hybrid, or remote work options, the right digital tools are key to ensuring employees feel engaged and connected. Increased engagement and connectedness can also lead to improved productivity and talent attraction/retention.
As the world slowly returns to some normality, organizations are struggling to identify the right work model. From full-time in-person, hybrid, or fully remote, each model has its pros and cons, depending on the type of industry, the need for face-to-face interactions with customers, and the real estate holdings a company might be stuck with.
Every employee has different expectations for their work experience, but catering to those wants and needs is key to making the office a place people want to be.
Regardless of the model, all organizations must provide their employees with the right digital tools to increase employee engagement and connection to the company.
The Importance of Employee Experience in the Post-Pandemic Era
To succeed at bringing people back to the office, keeping them engaged, and helping them be successful, companies need to design around an authentic employee experience. This experience should be centered around the individual’s journey. This includes their daily tasks, the tools needed to do their jobs effectively, how they communicate and collaborate with colleagues virtually and across geographies, how they maintain their professional network of colleagues and leaders, and how they balance their work life with their personal one.
Workplace App Usage Examples
A workplace app can provide all the tools and systems employees need daily under one unified, branded app. Key features include:
- Collaborating in-person and virtually with colleagues through neighborhoods and virtual or in-person meetings
- Booking meeting rooms and desk space
- Navigating a redesigned office with wayfinding
- Accessing office entry and services with a digital ID on their phone or smart watch
- Accessing personal information like payroll, vacation time, and training
- Tracking goals progress
- Creating IT and/or facilities tickets
- Submitting expense reports
- Organizing travel arrangements
- Arranging their commute through transit and parking
- Scheduling gym classes
- Ordering food
These features allow employees to personalize their experience based on their job, physical location, and personal preferences. A unified platform can reduce employees’ wasted time and the frustration of logging into multiple systems. One platform allows them to quickly access needed information.
"As we navigate this new era of work, companies need to prioritize employee experience to attract and retain top talent,” says Diane Carlson, chief marketing officer of ModoLabs, a workplace engagement platform. “Providing a seamless and personalized digital workplace experience through a workplace app can be a game changer for organizations looking to bring people back to the office. When employees make the commute to the office, they want to experience a worthwhile day. Motivations are unique to each individual and could include face-to-face collaboration with co-workers, attending an onsite social event, or even taking advantage of health and wellness amenities.”
By offering a workplace app, companies can expect increased engagement, leading to happier, more productive employees. Quick polls and surveys can reveal the real needs and wants of employees, thus allowing companies to quickly adapt to the employees’ needs.
Jim Cichanski, founder and chief human resource officer of Flex HR, says, “The return to normalcy in the workplace has been anything but typical, with some companies opting to close their offices entirely and others requiring employees to return to the facility, while a third hybrid approach presents unique challenges due to its many variables, such as shared spaces and reduced office sizes, making it more important than ever to use workplace apps to help manage workflow and scheduling demands. It's crucial to provide comprehensive training to employees to ensure they have access to these essential tools and technology.”
Making the Workplace More Social and Fun
A workplace app can also be used as a platform for employees to interact socially, in-person or virtually. For example, companies can employ gamification to incentivize people – and create FOMO – to come to the office more often, engage with colleagues from across the building and the world, and make the app fun and interactive.
Photo sharing, affinity and interest groups, social events, treasure hunts, professional knowledge games, in-app discounts, and even free food are additional ways to make the workplace more appealing and enjoyable.
A workplace app can help companies provide a seamless employee experience that will entice employees back to the office. Companies can expect increased engagement and productivity by providing all the tools and systems employees need daily under one unified, branded app.
By creating a platform for employees to interact in a social environment, companies can make the workplace more appealing and enjoyable, helping to create a thriving workplace culture. Using a workplace app allows companies to stay ahead of the curve and create a competitive advantage for attracting and retaining top talent.
Prioritizing Employee Experience for a Competitive Advantage
In the end, the success of any company is largely dependent on its employees. By providing the right tools and systems, companies can create a seamless employee experience that will not only increase productivity and engagement but also attract and retain top talent.
As we move toward a new era of work, companies that prioritize the employee experience will undoubtedly have a competitive advantage, and workplace apps will be a key component of this experience.