OpenMarket – November 5, 2015
Since smartphones began to offer email access, it’s become hard for employees to get away from work. Having suffered that experience, the idea that the boss might be texting too might not sound very appealing at first.
But surprisingly, SMS can be a great tool for companies that need a little extra something to get their employees to engage … with their bosses, with activities in the company, and with one another.
Why Do Employees Need To Be Engaged?
According to research on self-reported employee experiences, roughly 55% of American workers are not actively engaged in their work, and worse, about 16% are “actively disengaged.” This is bad news for business.
Employee attitude is only a small piece of the puzzle, though. Because so much of the workforce is focused on punching the clock and getting through the day, the true goal of getting substantive work done tends to fall by the wayside.
Happy employees are ultimately better for your ROI, so employers have a social and financial responsibility to keep workers at their best.
One way to do that is to make sure your employees are engaged. Employees who are plugged in and motivated are committed to the company’s mission and work hard to ensure its goals are met in a timely and comprehensive manner.
They care not only about their own success within the company but about the company’s success as a whole. Engagement depends largely on employer initiatives, however, and employers tend to underestimate the levels of employee discontent.
SMS can play a central role in such initiatives. In fact, research has indicated that 40% of employees already use their mobile devices for work-related tasks … and 84% of businesses want to improve mobile communications within the workplace.
The tools already exist; all that’s left is for businesses to take the proverbial bull by the horns and implement them. Some of the excellent ideas for SMS engagement tactics include:
Opinion Poll Blasts
If you’re seeking feedback as an employer, SMS can be a useful polling tool. Your staff can offer powerful clues that let you know what’s going well in the workplace and what else could use some adjustment.
SMS is best suited to soliciting one or two questions from employees. Rather than having to fill out a full-scale survey, workers can respond quickly to a message without having to interrupt what they’re working on.
Actively soliciting business-related opinions is one of the best ways to engage your workers. When employees feel their input is valued, they have more investment in the operation of the organization.
It’s not enough simply to invite feedback, however; employers have the responsibility to listen to employees’ ideas and implement changes wherever appropriate. Responses from employees via SMS polling can provide the necessary data to drive your business forward and improve day-to-day operations for the entire staff.
Much as we all might wish our employees would contribute to company success solely due to their personal investment, the reality is that most U.S. workers show up to work because they will be paid.
Timesheets can present a challenge, however. Tired and forgetful employees sometimes fail to fill out these essential forms, which keeps them from receiving their due payment at the appropriate time.
SMS reminders can help employees remember to submit their timesheets. They can also be used to notify employees that they have been paid via direct deposit or to convey other finance-related communication.
For example, if an employee requires a refund for a work-related purchase, an SMS can serve as confirmation that the expense has been reimbursed. These alerts are a great alternative to email because employees will receive them immediately without having to dig through a cluttered inbox.
Company-wide Health Initiatives
Believe it or not, devoting a small portion of your company’s budget to enacting a company-wide health program can render an enormous return on investment. According to one report, wellness programs return more than three times the amount invested in such initiatives.
From 2014 onward, companies are now permitted to offer sizeable bonuses to employee health-care plans for participation in smoking cessation programs. Company wellness programs are also designed to encourage positive changes at the individual level, which empowers employees to feel better and reduce the overall amount spent on health care.
Opening an SMS dialogue can provide extra motivation and positive encouragement for workers who participate in company wellness programs. Initiative leaders can send motivational messages and images to all participants, while individuals can submit photos and other content to share their successes.
SMS can also be used to announce vital business achievements, including acknowledgements of employees’ outstanding work. According to a guide from the Wall Street Journal, employees respond better to encouragement than to punishment.
Assigning tasks based on your employees’ personal interests and skill sets is a great way to keep them motivated … which also means the employer will find much more to celebrate in the long run.
A few benefits of announcing achievements via SMS include being fast, simple, and inexpensive. Employees will enjoy receiving a feel-good message that recognizes their hard work; and because of the brief nature of the messages themselves, employees will be less likely to become distracted from the task at hand.
All in all, SMS supplies a great method for communicating widespread reminders, recognitions, and other brief but important messages, without too much fuss. At OpenMarket, we help businesses launch SMS solutions designed specifically around employee engagement and other mobile needs.
Engaged employees enjoy what they do, and they work harder to do it. It comes down to employers’ commitment to communicating with their workers. As a company that relies on the combined efforts of many involved team members, we at OpenMarket understand how these services can benefit more than just business culture.
Contact us today to inquire further about our mobile messaging services.