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5 Ways Big Data Can Boost Employee Engagement

Big data provides organizations with deep insights into employees' performance and motivation—or lack thereof. Here are five ways you can use big data to boost employee engagement.
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A single disengaged employee may cost a company almost $16,000 a year, according to Forbes. And although employee engagement is at an all-time high, 53% of workers are still not engaged, and another 13% are “actively disengaged,” according to Gallup.

What does that have to do with big data?

Big data represents a large amount of information, both unstructured and structured that accumulate throughout different work activities. Big data’s greatest benefit is allowing businesses to access predictive capabilities via different processing systems.

Acquiring big data from multiple sources provides organizations with deep insights into consumer and client characteristics, along with internal enterprise performance. Using the data and records of buying trends, customer interactions, online communities, social media and surveys allows businesses to quickly and accurately predict behaviors and actions. 

Many businesses forget that their biggest customer is their employees. Employers need to build a healthy and long-term relationship with their employees the same way they do with their customers.

With the right analytics and tools, you can easily measure everything from individual performance, team spirit, interactions, collaboration between different departments and the overall company culture.

Big data is here already. The HR department just needs to decide what information they can use to the advantage of the business. Here are five ways you can use big data to boost employee engagement:

1) Get to know your employees. Employers can motivate their teams to perform with more efficiency by finding out what inspires, impacts and disappoints them. With huge reserves of HR data at hand, employers can collect the relevant metrics and then understand, analyze and act on them.

The application of the right metrics is important. You can pick the simplest metrics to get insights. Start with answers for basic questions, like “Are my employees happy working with me?” or “Do I, as an employer, try to keep employees’ motivation levels up?”

2) Cast the vision. By using big data performance analytics, employees are in a better position to envision the connection between organizational goals and their daily operations. This includes them as an active participant in the organization’s processes.

Managers can formulate individual career development plans for each employee. Every task completed by the employee creates logs that assist in reviewing and comparing the desired goals. Employers can gauge employee capabilities and share performance outcomes and departmental goals.

3) Encourage employees to engage. Who doesn’t want to have a successful career and work at a job where there is growth? Big data helps employees take an active approach in this regard.

Employers can use big data tracking tools to access employee’s performance metrics through an internal career portal or a virtual assistant. The employees can control and calculate the quality of their work. Workers can also select particular areas to track their performance and the performance metrics of their colleagues, further encouraging employees to become more efficient and engaged.

Organizations that allow for this kind of empowerment benefit from the highest levels of employee engagement in the long run. It also saves both the employer and employee from openly discussing workplace shortcomings.

Through this application of big data, you can identify and support your unsatisfied employees and try to retain them. Using the predictive capabilities of big data, you can know which employees are susceptible to accidents, health issues and even demonstrate signs of demotivation.

4) Course-correct efficiency. Big data, coupled with an efficient employee monitoring solution, such as Xnspy, can highlight immediate issues that threaten productivity.

For example, Xnspy calculates the time employees spend on Facebook or other social media apps. This insight can help managers enact short breaks between assignments. If the habits are too addictive, employers could disable or block apps and websites that hinder performance and are a source of constant distraction.

In most cases, when employees know that the company is monitoring their activities on company-owned phones, they act more responsibly and efficiently.

5) Include employees in data-driven decisions. The effective use of big data requires collaboration from workers at all levels of the company. You can encourage and train your employees to contribute to data. 

Gathering and storing the information at every consumer contact is crucial for an effective data-driven organizational culture. Organizational leaders can train, evaluate and supervise employees during the information collection process. With the right tools and strategies in place, employees can make the most of every opportunity that comes their way.

 Andrew Carroll is an expert in cybersecurity. He helps businesses both small and medium-sized, in implementing and adopting the best security methods for their organization and network.