May 23, 2022 Ways to Increase Employee Engagement with Microsoft Teams Introduction The era of remote work dispersed employees to different geographical locations where they could only connect virtually. Though companies offered flexibility to work anywhere, anytime, yet the challenge to keep employees actively engaged in remote environment remained top concern. There is no doubt that employees can easily communicate and work together using a collaboration tool. But can it also offer an inclusive culture to counteract the lack of coordination via social interaction? In recent years, Microsoft Teams emerged as a powerful digital collaboration solution to engage employees meaningfully. Although the platform is predominantly virtual, businesses could attain their business goals without compromise by building highly engaged teams. In this blog, we will see how using Microsoft Teams, IT leaders can confidently boost internal communications, increase employee engagement, and achieve critical business objectives successfully. Let’s begin – Coordinate via video calls The video conferencing feature in Microsoft Teams is a direct way to personally connect with coworkers and experience a more human element. Employees can not only interact face-to-face and share knowledge but also develop greater personal relationships necessary for workplace collaboration through video calls. Integrate productivity apps Microsoft 365 suite provides exceptional productivity apps such as SharePoint Online, Planner, ToDo, Excel, OneNote etc., for users to get their work done efficiently. Such apps help users to easily perform their tasks from Microsoft Teams and collaborate effortlessly while keeping them engaged. MS Teams governance Governance saves MS Teams from collaboration havoc and boosts long term engagement by creating a secure environment with organizational guidelines. To allow MS Teams to operate smoothly, it’s important to implement governance policies such as configuring team creation, naming convention, lifecycle management, user access, permissions, and roles. Governance ensures that the information exchanged among users remains protected and data is not lost so that users can collaborate without fear. Company-wide live updates A constant stream of org-wide information such as business headlines, latest company news, business results, etc., should be disseminated to connect entire organization. Sharing stories of business success with employees generates a sense of belonging and enhances engagement. Automate repetitive IT processes Many processes performed at the backend of the MS Teams platform are manual, repetitive and time consuming. As such, administrators struggle to manage end users and resources across M365 tenant endlessly. To elevate employee experience and bring greater engagement in Microsoft Teams, automating the platform and simplifying the interface is the prime solution. Leverage bots as digital assistants Intelligent bots can add a whole new experience to Microsoft Teams and empower employees greatly by increasing productivity. In the absence of a direct support, employees can interact with bots and get the relevant answers in seconds. Bots can even take over HR activities, help users to manage timesheets, leaves, and even foster camaraderie by pairing random employees of an organization. For those who want to try a hand, Microsoft provides Bot Framework and other necessary tools that facilitate creation of customized apps and bots. Align employees to company’s vision To keep employees aligned to organizational mission, ensure that you share your business plans and strategies with them. Collecting their views and reviews on company’s important matters before taking a decision makes them feel heard and valued. Two-way communication fills gap in understanding each other’s perspectives, cultivates trust and promotes engagement. Recognize and reward efforts Recognition is a great strategy to motivate your A performers and bring them closer to your business. You can use MS Teams as media to inform people about someone’s important contribution to the company or milestones achieved. Praises and kudos inspire them to add more value to your organization and help in retaining the talent too. Create opportunities to socially connect An enterprise social network catalyzes interactions, allows users to form communities with common interests and boosts teamwork in Microsoft Teams which returns profitability. To do so, an intranet can be built on Microsoft Teams platform where employees can create profiles, maintain updates, and socialize much like networking websites. This makes workspace comfortable and engaging when employees can share photos from company’s special events, or celebrations and post comments. Employee engagement is a precursor to productivity. Hence, organizations must take concrete steps to empower employees digitally so that they feel passionate about their job. Engaged employees naturally want to be involved, and are ready to walk extra mile with you which is key to business success.