Time. It isn’t always on your side when you’re managing share plans, especially when they form part of a broader role, such as Reward or CoSec. One minute you’re navigating huge award and vesting periods, the next you’re dealing with vast amounts of administration like annual tax returns, while keeping your eye on compliance. The whole thing can feel like an impossible and overwhelming juggling act.
No wonder then, that employee communications and engagement activities are often sporadic or transactional in nature. The problem with this approach is that employee engagement isn’t just about awareness. It’s about empowering employees, by influencing and changing behaviour. Which means the impact of isolated one-off, sporadic communications efforts, can be short-lived.
Here are some tips to help increase the long-term impact of your communications efforts and boost employee engagement.
A quiet place
Developing a communications plan is a creative process. Using quiet periods to prepare well ahead of major activity, will give your ideas space to form and develop. You can also use this quiet time to assess whether your share plan administration process or the employee experience could be improved and understand how you want to communicate with your employees, i.e. digitally, traditionally or a blend of both. This can help to free up time that can then be dedicated to improving communications and engagement going forward.
Bring in the experts
Working with communications experts either internally or externally, can dramatically improve your communications. Blending your technical knowledge and their creative knowhow can really help you to achieve results. Engaging graphics and memorable logos / assets can really pack a punch.
So, once you’ve used your free time to create a plan and found the right support. You can start to build your content…
Building your Content
Seek to inform and empower
When it comes to powerful and effective employee engagement communications, awareness is just the starting point. The best employee engagement also seeks to build understanding, empower employees to take action, and gains and maintains their commitment.
Working with communications experts either internally or externally, can dramatically improve your communications.
If you consider all of these outcomes during the initial planning stages of your communications and engagement approach, you’re even more likely to get the long term results you want
Watch your language
Another area to focus on is the language you use – always try and get the facts across without using unnecessary jargon. Increasingly, companies are becoming far more informal in tone, using accessible language that is human can really help to drive engagement. If it is easy to read, it is easy to understand and that makes it easy to learn!
Choosing the right channel
A key communication skill is choosing the right channel – is a digital channel the right choice or more traditional print communication? It all depends on your audience’s needs and access to technology.
Connecting to the journey.
Finally, your employees are on a journey during their time with your company. So, it’s important to tell a story. Providing your employees with context, by linking their share plan to the wider reward components and through to your organisations business strategy, mission and purpose creates a far more compelling narrative. Visualising their journey and the communication touchpoints can help you to build an approach that increases consistency and therefore engagement.
Plotting their journey and connecting share plans to their overall experience, allows them to engage as and when it’s convenient for them. The journey doesn’t end once employees join a share plan, so your communications shouldn’t either. If you stop communicating, people are likely to disengage, and the objectives of your plan will be missed.
You can use these tools individually or together to power up your engagement efforts.
If you’d like to know more about this topic or would like access to Shareworks’ case studies on how our share plan administration software has helped boost employee engagement, get in touch.