It shouldn’t be a surprise to any business that a well-motivated workforce is a productive one. Good morale not only makes it easier to attract and retain the best talent, but efficiency will rise and your customers will notice a higher level of service.
But when managers are asking themselves what they can do to increase employee satisfaction, one element that may be overlooked is making sure their workers have the right technology tools in place to do their job.
There are few things more frustrating for employees than finding day-to-day activities are hindered by over-complicated, unintuitive or outdated applications and tools that make it a hassle to get work done. This could be as the result of slow computers, unreliable communications, or the need to hunt down information from a wide range of sources before tasks can be completed.
All this can add up to thousands of wasted man-hours across an enterprise, as well as higher stress levels for employees. But this does not have to be the case. By implementing the right solutions, companies can make their staff’s lives much easier, leading directly to better employee satisfaction and improved overall business performance.
So here are three key things you can do to boost employee satisfaction with technology.
1. Turn to the cloud
Cloud computing has been one of the major trends in the IT industry for the last few years, and businesses are enjoying strong results. In fact, a recent survey by Tata Communications found 85% of firms agree the solutions have lived up to the hype, delivering advantages such as lower costs, improved scalability and easier access to powerful applications.
But Tata’s survey found the top benefits of the cloud were related to increased productivity and better access to data, cited by 69% and 65% of respondents respectively.
This technology can put the right information into the hands of users instantly, eliminating many of the more frustrating admin processes. Ensuring users do not have to waste time chasing down data or juggling several applications that do not integrate well will not make them more productive – they’ll be happier.
2. Embrace social networking
How your staff communicate and collaborate plays a key role in morale. When firms rely mainly on email threads to keep in touch, employees may often feel less involved in what is going on within their company. Important messages may be missed and these systems often lack a personal touch that makes workers feel valued.
Enterprise-focused social networking tools, however, can greatly help with this. Figures from Pew Research suggest around three-quarters of people already have at least one social networking account, so given that so many of your workforce will already be highly comfortable with these tools from their personal lives, tools like Yammer can offer a familiar experience that enables them to have their voice heard.
Some of the world’s biggest brands use Yammer to boost their collaboration, such as airline British Airways. The firm has adopted the tool to help boost its operations, as anyone with an issue can post on the service and get a quick answer to their query.
3. Work wherever, whenever, you like
Mobility and flexibility is one trend that’s grown hugely in recent years. This can cover a wide range of activities, including working on the move via a smartphone or tablet, being able to access key business resources from a home PC or laptop, or even the ability to freely hotdesk within a company. But what it essentially comes down to is making it easier for employees to work how, where and when they want.
To make this a success, employees will need to be able to access information and applications across smartphones, tablets and PCs, both inside the office and elsewhere. This may be when they are working in the field, during their morning commute or at home in the evenings.
Tools that make this easier can greatly improve employee satisfaction by helping them take control of how they work. It also means businesses are better able to offer policies such as flexible working as a means to help motivate staff.
One of the common themes with all these technologies is their ability to reduce hassle and make the lives of employees easier. By ensuring workers are able to complete their tasks quickly without needing to waste time on complex processes, they will be more motivated and deliver better results.