Feeling marginalised is not a good way to go through life. In the workplace, companies with large numbers of staff will inevitably have employees at the edge, who, unless conscious efforts are made to include them in all relevant corporate considerations, will end up feeling missed out and at the bottom of the corporate relevance pile. Not being invited to a team-building event, or receiving timely company news are just the tip of a potential displaced-employee iceberg.

Whether the workers at the extremities are the staff in the warehouse, the store rooms stacking shelves, or people in distant regional offices, or field workers and logistics and delivery drivers always on the road, these are the people keeping a company’s cogs turning and they need to be included in all internal communications. And although some companies invest in real-time communications platforms, or have regular weekly or monthly ‘get togethers’, with some even bringing everyone together a couple of times a year for corporate ‘retreats’, the costs involved can be considerable.

Yet, somehow, workers need regular, real-time interactions, because employee engagement doesn’t happen on its own and the ‘costs’ of leaving part of the workforce out of internal communications can end up damaging morale, productivity and, eventually, staff retention.

Avoidable problems

One problem employees at the edge often experience is that they have no company email address, with many larger organisations restricting corporate email those above a certain level. As a result, emailed internal communications memos end up reaching only so far down the chain of command and often rely on ‘less-than-efficient’ line or junior managers to disseminate internal communications like details of recent company wins with ‘thank yous’ to all staff from the CEO. Something needs to change.

Mobile app game changer

We have discovered that our clients who use their own mobile app made on our platform can reach and engage with every employee, even those with no email, disseminating news and internal communications to the farthest reaches of the company so that even the remotest, lowliest workers feel relevant and important. We’ve found most of our customers have 70-80% of staff without email and this makes our mobile employee engagement app an incredibly powerful tool for helping include all those being missed by traditional internal communications. In fact, using our app on their own smartphones and providing a familiar mobile-app experience to employees is now replacing traditional, costly, internal communications channels and tools, as well as making many elements of corporate intranets redundant.

Our UK gas distribution client, SGN, for example, has 3,800 employees of whom 80% are field based across 30 locations. SGN’s HR team had such confidence in the employee engagement app that at launch they simultaneously stopped posting news items to the company intranet. Within one week 32% of employees had downloaded the app, with 84% downloading in the first 28 days. An SGN employee survey revealed 92% who said ‘they like it’, 64% who confirmed they access the app at least once a day and 26% who access it two to three times a day. And on an on-going basis, push notifications are issued on average three times per week to draw attention to new app content.

The mobile employee engagement app is a real internal communications game changer, particularly in its ability to reach all the remotest employees in a company.

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