Can HR technologies boost employee engagement and retention?

Return to some sense of normal working lives post-covid results in employees lacking engagement or a meaningful work experience

Dirk Buyens

By Dirk Buyens

Professor of Human Resources Management

16 November 2021

Over the past year and a half, many companies have grappled and now gotten used to a working in a hybrid world. Though this may have made it a lot easier for most employees to manage and balance their workload and their personal lives, we have now come to a stage where employees are returning to the office, albeit at a reduced rate to pre-covid. But, as employees return to some sense of normal working lives, often they may lack engagement, a meaningful experience in work or may even want a career change post-covid. 

Dirk Buyens, Professor of Human Resources Management, and Co-Director of the Centre for Excellence in Strategic Talent Management, wonders whether HR technologies could help to change this. 

HR technologies are being utilised more and more by companies in order to put hard data behind decision-making around engagement, experience and retention of their employees. 

As we move back into a world of returning to the office and other workplaces, companies are utilising this HR technology to ensure that their employees are coping with the changes to the working world and measuring the amount of time workers spend in the office, and how and when they chose to do so. 

Companies are keen to track data on when employees come into the office, the patterns around why they come in, and if there are any specific reasons as to why perhaps they may not be coming in. Of course, surveying employees is one way to do this, but utilising technologies such as AI and tracking the data of when people are at home and when they are in the office to see patterns is an effective approach to understand the reasons and motivations behind this for employees. 

Using this data, companies can make better decision-making around employee experience, and understand when they may need to encourage workers further to either come in or work from home, and to also understand the drivers and reasons that people do make this decision, and therefore understand how to influence these decisions to maximise the employees experience and engagement. By maximising employee experience and engagement, companies will likely retain more staff than before. 

Whilst over the past year or so, employees have had much more time to think about their career paths and what they want to do long-term, often leading to many workers switching careers and leaving their roles once the situation settled. 

For large organisations, who may have seen a number of people leave, a HR technology they have been utilising is finding patterns and regular occurrences is the reasons behind workers leaving, in order to make better decisions when it comes to retaining their current workforce and making much more attractive offers in their job postings to ensure their retention and employee experience improves.

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Dirk Buyens

Dirk Buyens

Professor of Human Resources Management / Director Open Exec Education