4 Ways to Use Technology In the Workplace to Motivate Employees

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Finding creative strategies to motivate employees isn’t easy. Sure, employers can keep their employees engaged and motivated with benefits like free lunches, unlimited PTO and company-hosted social events, but for employers looking for something a little less conventional, try embracing more tech in the workplace.

Here are four ways technology can help managers boost engagement and create a motivated workforce:

1. Increase sharing and collaboration.

Cloud-based file sharing tools like Google Drive and Dropbox are gaining traction within businesses both small and large. They can be helpful in motivating employees to get things done by eliminating basic frustrations in the workplace (i.e. spending entirely too much time searching for files in a disorganized shared drive).

In addition to making it easier to find and share documents with team members, cloud-based sharing tools can keep track of who’s working on what and encourage collaboration among coworkers. Something these sharing tools have that traditional onsite file servers lack is the ability to access files remotely on mobile devices, which makes doing business while on the go easier than ever.

Related: 3 Productivity Apps for Boosting Teamwork and Employee Collaboration

2. Gain a better view of individual performance.

We all want 360-degree performance management, but few us have it. Talent management software is the answer to obtaining a 360-degree view of individual performance. Its primary purpose is to help managers gain a broader perspective on employees, since they can only see so much firsthand.

Seeing more means being able to do more for employees. Not only does it facilitate ongoing feedback and solicit peer feedback, but it can help managers and employees identify personal strengths and weaknesses to create a competency framework for individual development and succession planning. It also makes the performance review process a whole lot easier for both parties.

Related: 5 Ways HR Technology Can Improve Performance Reviews

3. Provide and receive real-time feedback.

The performance review tends to come around on an annual or quarterly basis, but feedback should be ongoing. Unfortunately, according to a 2013 survey of 6,000 HR professionals by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), a mere 2 percent of employers provide ongoing feedback to their employees.

Rather than waiting for performance review season to dish out criticism and offer praise, automating the performance review process with HR software can make giving and receiving real-time feedback a cinch. Instant feedback mechanisms can significantly improve engagement and motivation by consistently guiding employees in the right direction. It can also give employees the ability to offer suggestions directly to management—and valuing employee input is yet another motivational tool.        

4. Facilitate learning on the go.

No one really wants to bring work home with them, but sometimes it’s necessary to get ahold of certain work-related items outside of the office. Cue the mobile app. Mobile applications give employees the flexibility they need and want when it comes to file accessibility.

Using tech in the workplace that is mobile-optimized is important when it comes to accessing important company information or documents when not at the office. In fact, a 2013 Mobile Helix survey of 300 IT decision makers estimated that their organizations would see nearly a 40 percent boost in productivity if key enterprise applications were mobilized.

There’s no denying that the mobile revolution has forever changed the way we work, learn and play. When it comes to motivating employees, mobile apps are essential.

Related: How Learning-as-You-Go Is Part of the Entrepreneur's Journey