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3 Ways Employee Apps Support a Distributed Workforce

A distributed workforce offers numerous advantages for companies both big and small, but it also presents a few challenges. How do you stay connected with mobile workers? How can you keep everyone up-to-date on company news? An employee app might offer the perfect solution.

Get Social

HubEngage Social Employee App

A social workforce can share ideas, tips, strategies, and experiences without ever having to visit the office. If you work with a distributed workforce, employee mobile apps take social media into an internal medium where you do not have to worry about excess noise.

It is true that Facebook and Twitter can help you stay connected with mobile employees, but you do not want your workers tweeting photographs of cute puppies when they are supposed to be pounding the pavement. If you provide an in-app social experience that is designed around your corporate culture, you will encourage socialization in an acceptable way.

How to Leverage Social Interactions in Employee Apps

If you want your employee app to help your employees socialize productively, you need an intelligent and incentivized solution.  For instance, employees might get a certain number of points each time they create a new post, comment on a colleague’s post, or otherwise engage with the app. Those points accrue over time and can lead to rewards, free gifts, and other incentives that drive engagement.

Other strategies to encourage social interaction include:

  • Holding contests: Ask your employees to post selfies or other photographs in your employee app’s social feed. At the end of the month, everyone votes on the photos, and the winner gets a prize.
  • Engaging from the top down: You cannot expect junior employees to participate in a social context if their superiors do not do so, as well. Executives and managers should model the behavior they want their mobile employees to exemplify. Since remote workers are not on-site, the example needs to be digital instead of physical.
  • Celebrating achievements: Encourage employees to post about their accomplishments, whether it is landing a difficult client or conducting a successful meeting. If your distributed workforce supports one another through online social interaction, they will develop stronger bonds.

Update Your Workforce

HubEngage Employee App CommunicationsFrom major announcements to gentle reminders, employee apps allow managers and business owners to keep their mobile employees up-to-date on company events and news. If you populate the news section of your app with timely, interesting information, your employees will respond positively.

This is a great opportunity to shape and share your corporate culture. What words do you use to communicate with your mobile and on-site employees? How do you incorporate imagery and other elements with your announcements?

If you use a robust app like HubEngage, you can also segment your audience when delivering company news. For instance, your on-site workers might not need to know about a storm that’s passing through a town in another state, but your remote workers who might be affected by that storm deserve a heads up. By segmenting your audience, you ensure that nobody receives useless alerts on their mobile devices.

How to Leverage Company News in Employee Apps

For your mobile workforce, focus on using the company news module as a way to help them feel like part of the team “back home.” If you run a real estate company, for instance, you know that your agents and brokers always carry their phones. You can use company news to deliver actionable tips and information that might help them close deals and snag high-dollar properties.

Additionally, there is no reason you have to use the news and social modules separately. You might combine the two to generate more engagement and to help your mobile workers work together. For instance, you could make a company announcement via the news module, then invite workers to share their feedback in a social context.

Get Honest Feedback

Your employees are your greatest source of feedback, and this might hold doubly true for your mobile workforce. They are out in the community every day, communicating with people on the front lines and collecting stories that they can share if you give them a chance.

Mobile employee apps can help you collect feedback in two distinct ways:

  1. Invite workers to share stories: Stories from the road can provide lots of insight into customers, communities, demographics, and more. If your workers share stories via the mobile employee app, other mobile employees can follow along and reciprocate.
  2. Collect data: Workers can participate in polls, surveys, and other interactive content that allows them to express themselves. Create an open environment in which workers feel confident in voicing their opinions and suggesting alternatives to the status quo.

How to Leverage Feedback in Employee Apps

Some employees might not express interest in participating in surveys and other interactive content at first. You can encourage participation, however, by following a few best practices:

  • Put all participants’ names into a hat and draw one or more to win a free gift.
  • Write funny or heartwarming surveys that keep employees engaged.
  • Stress that you are willing to apply what you learn to mobile employees’ benefit.
  • Recognize employees when they share feedback that improves processes, products, services, or other aspects of your business.

Once an employee app becomes a daily tool, your mobile employees will come to rely on it for information, entertainment, and education. If you do not have an employee mobile app yet, now’s the chance to get started. Try the HubEngage app to learn why it is the most engaging, thoughtful solution for your business.

Download The Ultimate Guide to Planning Your Employee Experience Platform

To truly empower employees and optimize productivity, you need more than a communications tool. This guide frames the employee experience platform planning process and how to create the work environment your organization needs.

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Yash Chitre

Yash is SVP of Engagement and Co-Founder of HubEngage. Yash is responsible for marketing, client engagement and product development for the HubEngage Employee Experience platform. Over his 20+ years of experience, he has worked in the employee communications and engagement space with enterprise customers of all sizes and bench marked many best practices that have resulted in the feature set included in HubEngage.

Senior Vice President & Co-Founder, @HubEngage

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