Technology is one of the main drivers of success in the modern business environment, but it is also revolutionizing the consumer market and changing the way people consume content, interact with brands, and how they buy. Without a doubt, one of your top priorities in 2021 and going forward should be to invest in digital transformation in order to take your internal and external processes forward, and create a better customer and employee experience. When it comes to managing and engaging employees in the new normal, using the right tech will be paramount to success.

Now that employees are coming back into the physical office and retail space, it’s important to use employee contact tracing to keep everyone safe, but beyond safety against COVID-19, you need to find better ways to engage your workforce. An engaged employee is more productive and more satisfied, and they’re able to work seamlessly with others to help push your company forward.

Today, we’ll put all this into perspective and talk about the best ways you can use technology to improve your small business and boost employee engagement and success.

Facilitate collaboration and teamwork

Firstly, keep in mind that in the new normal, you can expect your workforce to be centralized and decentralized at the same time. The pandemic has prompted a major shift towards remote and decentralized work, and in 2021 and the years to come, companies will continue to rely on the remote workforce. That said, some employees will return to the physical office space, and many will come back to their retail stores.

This brings a whole new set of challenges that managers need to overcome, such as the challenge of establishing effective communication and collaboration between centralized and decentralized teams. The best way to do this is to empower your team with a robust project management tool to allow them to collaborate seamlessly in centralized digital location, in real time.

You should also switch to a comprehensive communication system that has all the features necessary for your teams to communicate clearly. This tech should offer video and audio conferencing, low-cost phone calls, text messaging, mobile optimization, and more. 

Leverage performance monitoring to make better decisions

To effectively engage your workforce and set your employees up for success, you need to run a tight backend operation. As a leader, your job is not just to supervise or check in on your teams every once in a while, it should be to leverage the right technology to monitor performance and make better managerial decisions. You need to make these decisions with the company’s and the employees’ best interest in mind, and for that, you need good data.

That’s where performance monitoring tools come in, and nowadays you can find various solutions to fit your unique needs and business model. For the most part, you can generate great internal reports by using automated performance monitoring tools for remote teams, and you can also use some handy feedback solutions to get valuable feedback from your employees at the end of their shift.

Use digital signage to your advantage

Now that employees are returning to the physical workplace and that companies are finally opening their doors to their eager customers, you need to seize the opportunity to engage both groups. In the retail environment, you can use commercial digital signage to convey some powerful messages to your customers, but you can also use it to improve your internal processes.

Digital signage can serve many a purpose, and you can also use it to communicate important information to your employees, so that they can work more efficiently with the right information on hand. You can also use this tech to keep your employees inspired and motivated with branded messages and encouraging words. 

Generate employee feedback seamlessly

To make better decisions for your workforce and your company as a whole, you need to act on relevant data – and there’s no one that can provide better internal data than your employees. Your goal should be to engage and inspire your workforce to achieve more, and to do that seamlessly, you need to ask for honest and transparent feedback.

Now, your employees might feel compelled to talk to an HR representative or fill out a questionnaire every once in a while, but that’s not exactly fun or engaging. A better way to do this is to automate the process. You can use a digital feedback tool that will prompt your employees to leave some feedback at the end of their shift, once they clock out remotely. This can be a simple rating system along with an empty field where they can leave a comment or two. 

Use gamification to boost employee development

Lastly, consider gamifying your employee development programs. Modern employees don’t want to feel like they are stuck at their jobs with nowhere to go, and they crave new challenges and career-boosting opportunities. That’s why you need to create these advancement programs, but instead of following the traditional model, why not use gamification to your advantage?

By gamifying these programs with quizzes, levels, and fun interactions with the training tool, you will invariably boost employee engagement and satisfaction. Most importantly, this will help with knowledge retention and will help your employees internalize what they have learned. This builds better employees who are able to implement their new skills right away. 

Over to you

Technology can help managers achieve many great things in the new normal, and with the right tech in your hands, you can create a more productive and successful workforce. Consider adding these solutions to your 2021 strategy and watch as employee productivity and happiness start to rise.

Posted by Raul Harman