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Innovative Ways To Improve Employee Engagement

Discover 11 innovative ways to improve employee engagement that helps improve your organisation's success and culture.

Employee Engagement
10 Min read
Last Updated on
April 6, 2021

One of the reasons why some companies are successful and have long-term working employees is because of the rewards offered on successful completion of the project or constantly motivating their employees with perks. In this article we discover the innovative ways to improve employee engagement in your organization.

74% of the Outperformers from an IBM C-suite study  claim that employee morale affects the customer satisfaction.

of the Outperformers from an IBM C-suite study  claim that employee morale affects the customer satisfaction.


A salary hike, a team outing or an in-house party were a few of the traditional employee engagement methods followed. However, as times change, innovation becomes important. A company has to put importance on the different ways they engage their employees, and this is only possible when innovation is adopted. Innovation in employee engagement is a part of an organization's success mantra which cannot be denied.

MacLeod and Clarke in 2009 conducted a case study named McLeod Report representing a clear indication of how high-levels of employee engagement are correlated with innovation. 

In fact, it also provided a clear report of how service companies boosted innovation and cultural-shifts by emphasizing more on employee engagement. The report concluded how the performance of employees increases with innovation.

59% of engaged employees feel that their jobs allow them to be creative

Even a Gallup study, on discovering the innovation equation, found that 59% of engaged employees claim that their job allows them to bring forward creative ideas while only 3% of disengaged employees feel the same.

Before we delve into innovative employee engagement ideas, it is important that we learn what exactly employee engagement is all about:

David Macleod, author of The Extra Mile: How to Engage your People to win” defines employee engagement as

 "This is about how we create the conditions in which employees offer more of their capability and potential”.

It is completely based on trust, two way communication, and commitment between leaders and employees. This approach certainly helps companies to engage in business success.

Innovative ways to improve employee engagement

1. A shift in the Mind-set

As times are changing, there is a shift in HR mindset and are adopting a more holistic approach with innovations. Innovation can be small or big, but this mindset shift is essential. Welcoming ideas from employees, giving them a chance to implement the process and allowing their voice to reach higher-authority are some partly used ways by companies. This helps employees to engage more for the growth of the company.

According to one study presented by Krueger & Killham, it was found that more than 59% of employees engaged with the company are happy with their employer's strategies to bring out creativity from them.

2. What do employees really look forward to?

Apart from receiving a timely salary, employees need recognition that will satisfy them, leading to better work. Work environment matters a lot for employees. In addition to this, too much work pressure, long hours of work and less appreciation certainly create a negative impression among employees towards the company. This is when innovation in employee engagement ideas comes into the role.

Sickness leads to asenteeism
The study on Quality of Work Life states that workplaces that have innovative management have low sickness and absence rate.

Innovation in an organization plays a major role to bring more business and stage ahead in the crowd. 

Innovative organizations like Nike offer employees the freedom to perform or tray and fail. This gives them the challenge while working on the assignments. The fact that only 13% of employees worldwide are engaged, isn't a good sign for companies with a large employee ratio. One of the reasons for gaining more engagement in employees is the enthusiasm to work. This enthusiasm comes when innovation is adopted.

If you are looking forward to accomplishing company goals and want to keep your employees happy then here are some innovative employee engagement ideas that can help in developing a progressive organization:

3. Defining Strategic Roles

This is the very first and an effective way of getting innovative in employee engagement. Earlier, the HR department was solely responsible for the engagement, but time has changed and so is the process.

Today, senior leaders and managers take up the responsibility to improve engagement and culture of the company. However, the question still remains. How will you make sure that employees contribute towards the engagement purpose?

One way is by adopting the Collective Engagement Approach. With this, leaders can hold every employee accountable for the engagement purpose.

4. Offering Rewards and Recognition

Rewarding an employee with recognition is a part of the acknowledgment the company can offer. This, in fact, is the best way of increasing engagement and motivating employees for better performance. There are ways to reward employees, and one way is by using online programs. 

Xoxoday's Empuls is designed to bring together diverse cultures, thoughts, and departments.

A screenshot of appreciation on Xoxoday Empuls Platform
A screenshot of appreciation on Xoxoday Empuls Platform

Employers can also choose from point-based engagement and reward. With Xoxoday rewards and recognition, you have complete control over your account; choose from the extensive choice of gift vouchers and special perks for employees.

5. Implementing Feedback Routine

Feedback from employees is as important as seeking feedback from a customer regarding service and product. This isn't only limited to employers, but employees' perspectives too. 

Employees need timely feedback about their work progress and where they stand. Organizations today move at a fast pace and employees need continued feedback. It is the duty of employers and top company leaders to provide real-time feedback to their employees. There are three ways of working towards Feedback Routine:

  • Giving Feedback: 
    While giving away the feedback makes employees understand that feedback is important and it is just to help in growing better.
  • Collecting Feedback: 
    While collecting feedback, as a leader, you should make sure to improve further and serve best for your employees.
  • Acting on the Feedback
    As a manager or leader of the organization, it is important that you act towards the feedback given. If the employees suggest ideas, implement it for the betterment.
  • Making Workplace Fun:
    Employees tend to get bored with long work hours and non- engagement in other creative sessions. So taking up the step of having fun at the workplace is the best way to keep the enthusiasm high. Conduct Friday fun activity or take a break to have team lunch, or allow employees to take part in fun activities in the office.
  • Encouraging Experiment:
    Experiment in the workplace always brings positive change. However, during this change, there is a chance of a mistake, and employees should be aware of it. In fact, they should find making mistakes comfortable and should be open to overcome the mistake. As a leader, you need to be positive that the employee will make the changes accordingly and be creative enough.

6. Encouraging Knowledge Sharing in Creative Way

Creativity and innovation are always applauded, and allowing employees to share their knowledge towards the workplace will certainly bring change. Create an open sharing space, where employees can come together to share their ideas and updates on the learning points. To make these meetings fun and actively open, you can add themes for sharing sessions. For instance, add Mafia Movies theme, where the team will decide to share updates like a mafia gang. This will encourage more and more people to be creative and provide updates in an interesting way.

| Free ebook Download: Effective communication - More than just a dialogue |

7. Promoting Wellbeing

This innovative employee engagement idea is to not only promote wellbeing among employees but also promote a healthy lifestyle during work life. Employees work in different stressful environments which can literally turn them into robots. 

Health & wellness are definitely not new concepts when it comes to employee engagement. However, that no longer means just focusing on physical health via offering a gym discount, or bringing in a yoga instructor every month. Mental health should be a top priority for your company as well. Establish an HR mentality that emphasizes both mind & body awareness.

Stats of employee engagement survey
Source: Clutch Employee Benefits Survey 2018

As the workforce becomes increasingly digital, the traditional nine-to-five, clock-in/clock-out model becomes more and more outdated. Promoting work-life balance is key to employee engagement and work schedule is the foundation of that balance. Depending on your industry, there are a few ways to create flexible schedules that will not only show employees you care about their personal balance but make them more productive when they are in the office.

So they need a change, and by following the right wellness in the workplace, will certainly help to be innovative and increase engagement with leaders.

8. Creating on-board fun

For a new joiner, it can be quite a stressful situation to work in a new environment and among new people. 

So why not welcome them with the innovative method by adding introduction games or meet. This actually boosts their confidence and has a better engagement with people around.  Different companies have different methods of on-boarding new joinee which is quite a change for existing employees.

9. Establishing Right Connection with Innovation

Using collaborative innovation with engagement platforms like Empuls can help in harnessing the hidden talents of employees. To establish the right connection with innovation, below three steps can be helpful:

  • Meaningful Challenges: Find out the challenges which people can identify and align well with the business.
  • Capturing Different Profiles: Select people from different profiles and let them contribute to self-ideas. This will give a good chance for every employee to share ideas.
  • Use of Gamification: Implementing game techniques are always a helpful and innovative way to develop more engagement.

10. Workspace

An easy way to create a work environment that boosts employee engagement is to first focus on the environment itself. This can be done by giving employees a say in their individual workspace. Not only will this empower each employee with the ability to choose their surroundings, but also allow them to select the space in which they feel most effective. 

The workplace has become more complex than ever
A Gensler research shows how today’s work spaces are complex. All these aspects of the work environment needs to be considered while deciding on the employee work station.

Harvard Business Review found that when employees are able to select their workspace, they score higher on tests for innovation, overall performance, as well as both job and workplace satisfaction. For instance, when onboarding a new employee, allow them to choose between; a traditional desk or a sit-stand option; a yoga ball or a desk chair. 

11. Establish your Culture, and Live it!

All engagement principles begin with your corporate culture - it is the foundation of your brand, and your management team and HR representatives need to be your best brand ambassadors. Starting from the top down, your organization should know your culture, embrace it, and hire for it.

Culture of engagement & collaboration
Source: freetogrow.com

It isn’t just enough to establish your cultural principles, you also need to make sure that it is evangelized through your staff. Keep this in mind with recruiting and hiring; be open and honest about the environment you have and make sure potential new staff can embody and advance your culture and beliefs.


How can your organization implement these strategies to keep your current and future employees engaged? Here’s a 10 C checklist for employee engagement:

  1. Connect: Maintain a good relationship with your employees and make them feel valuable.
  2. Career: Provide your employees with challenging work with career opportunities for future advancement.
  3. Clarity: Employees must be clear about their roles, duties and what the organization stands for. They must be cleared about the organizational goals, their importance and how they are contributing towards it.
  4. Convey: Supervisors, mentors must clear the expectations of their employees and must provide feedback on their functioning in the organization.
  5. Congratulate: Recognize your employees instantly on their great hard work and give them a pat on their back as a symbol of appreciation.
  6. Contribute: You must make your employees understand how important his contribution is towards the organizational goals. This will lead to improvement in employee attitude which will in return improve job relevant behavior and thus the improvement in revenue growth.
  7. Control: Involve your employee in the decision-making process and give them a chance to set their goals, to voice their ideas and show that their contributions are valued.
  8. Collaborate: Create an environment that foster trust and collaboration among all the employees.
  9. Credibility: Employees feel motivated and proud if their company has a good brand value and reputation in the market. To maintain high ethical standards and make everyone feel good about the company.
  10. Confidence: Demonstrate high-performance standards and create confidence in your company and in your employees.
    The above ten C’s will not only help your organization to enhance employee engagement but also leads to good employer branding.

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