In today’s data-driven business environment, engagement evaluation tools traditionally reserved for measuring customer engagement are being applied to performance management systems, succession planning initiatives, and change management strategies. Employees want more feedback and companies are adapting tools already in use to give it to them. Companies are using real-time engagement evaluation to improve both the customer and employee experience.
Measuring and managing employee performance first gained popularity in the 1970’s. The annual employee performance review became mainstream and while it was a step in the right direction, it is no longer applicable. You can’t wait a whole year to tell your employees what they’re doing right or potentially wrong. One of the faults of the annual review is it put too much emphasis on the employee’s most-recent work. Forget that awesome project you completed in January, unless it’s in notes chances are the manager won’t remember to sing your praises—how frustrating. This can lead to employees feeling undervalued and unappreciated and that can potentially trickle down to the customer.
Real-time evaluation provides continuous feedback to employees throughout the year. Employees get to feel acknowledged for all of their successes, and managers can provide coaching to help employees improve upon weaknesses. There is a direct correlation between employee satisfaction and the quality of the customer experience. When employees are satisfied, customers get the optimal experience and are more likely to provide positive feedback.
In fact, a lot of the strategies and tools used to generate a continuous customer feedback loop are being applied to the employee feedback process. Let’s look at some of these real-time evaluation tools in action.
Capturing the sentiment behind digital discussion is one of the goals of today’s digital marketing teams. Marketers want to identify those who are saying positive things and amplify their message. They also want to use the negative feedback to improve the customer experience.
Likewise, companies want to capture the mood of their workforce. They are using emotion monitoring devices like Morale.me and Emooter to get real-time feedback on the emotional state of their employees.
The premise of these devices is simple enough. The display shows a series of emoticons that allow employees to anonymously express their reactions towards task assignments and other workplace developments. Managers use this feedback to make adjustments in real-time to keep morale high. An employee might not feel comfortable expressing displeasure in an assignment, but by monitoring emotions anonymously they don’t have to fear the consequences of being brutally honest.
Companies are also using social recognition platforms like Globoforce to share employee achievements with world instead of just in closed-door performance reviews. Celebrating success publicly lifts and empowers employees. It’s also a great force of motivation for others which likely increases employee productivity. HR teams can collect data on who is influencing success the most, which helps them with succession planning initiatives. They identify the key characteristics for success in each position and then use this data to develop each employee as they move up through the company. The absence of certain employees tells a story as well. It shows which employees are most likely to need replacing.
Finally, surveys are still a valid way to measure engagement and are evolving past the annual performance review. HR departments are using survey tools like TINYpulse to craft surveys tailored to specific situations—they don’t have to be a long drawn out process. These short surveys are delivered on a daily basis and give employees a way to express themselves regularly. Employees are like customers; they’re loyal when they feel heard by a company.
The data collected from real-time evaluation will only get more accurate as technology continues to develop. Machine learning will help create surveys that generate more engagement and provide a clearer picture of employee satisfaction. How companies utilize real-time engagement evaluation will have a tremendous effect on their ability to generate business and win the war for talent.
This article was first published on FOW Media.