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Employee Engagement

Employee Engagement in Hybrid Workplace: How to build a strategy

Employee engagement has become increasingly popular among HR managers and c-suite executives. It’s one of the most crucial indicators in determining job satisfaction. In fact, research indicates that highly engaged employees show a 21% greater profitability, a 41% reduction in absenteeism, and a 17% boost in productivity. 

Despite its benefits, only 39% of the employees were engaged in 2021, as per a survey. The need is to implement an effective employee engagement strategy for long-term employee retention, increased productivity, and better quality of work. 

However, it’s easier said than done, especially in this hybrid work environment, where some employees work from home while others work from the office. 

This guide will walk you through eight solid employee engagement strategies to keep your employees engaged on both fronts.

Why is employee engagement so important?

A satisfied workforce brings an organization to a static state, and an engaged workforce allows the organization to move forward. Here’s what happens when you decide to build an engaged workforce.

Increase in retention rate

Employees who invest emotionally into their work and organization would always prefer to stay with their existing work environment rather than take up other opportunities. Increased employee engagement means increased productivity and increased revenues. Therefore, the success of engagement initiatives is not only defined by a boost in the numbers, but also it is the most effective when your employees decide to keep working for your business rather than take up a new opportunity.

Increase in employee productivity

When employees attach emotion to their work, it results in them caring for it and constantly improving it for their own development. Feeling valued and cared for at work is the biggest motivation for employees. If they do not feel heard and a part of the company’s vision, they will automatically detach themselves emotionally and physically. 

Increase in innovation

High engagement levels lead to employees constantly thinking about ways to improve their work and upgrade their skill set. 

Increase in customer satisfaction

A highly engaged employee or a team understands the value of quality services/products very well and acts as the ambassador of the company when facing customers in the market.

Decrease in employee absenteeism

When your workforce is inherently motivated to work, you will need to lure them into the office by offering overtime pay or any kind of goodies.

Healthy workplace culture

Measuring the impact of your engagement activities will help in setting benchmarks that will further help in achieving your goal of building a healthier work environment. Measuring your engagement activities’ effectiveness provides a clear estimate of what is working and what is not working for your organization.

13 hybrid working-friendly ways to increase employee engagement

1. Draft your company’s core values 

Research shows that drafting the company’s core values is the top driver of employee engagement. 

Core values are action statements that guide the company and its employees to think and act with those values in mind. Defining clear core values is an excellent way to excite and inspire your employees. Plus, it helps you find candidates for your organization who share the same beliefs. 

For example, Zappos, a US e-commerce giant in shoe retail, has ten core values, and “Create Fun And A Little Weirdness” is one of them. These values help hiring managers to find and attract those employees with these traits and can be a good fit for the company’s culture. If your employees don’t believe in your values, they’re likely to be disengaged and put less effort into achieving the goals. 

Hence, clearly communicate your core values to every employee from day one. Make sure the values align them around a common purpose and explain how you work and what you want to accomplish. This way, you’ll create a positive work culture and encourage your team to form an emotional connection with your company.

2. Provide growth opportunities 

Companies that provide growth opportunities to their employees can make an important stride in supporting higher employee engagement. In fact, 94% of employees say they’d stay at their jobs for longer if their company invested in their careers. 

Having learning and development opportunities at the organization shows employees they’re valued—you choose to invest in them and not replace them with candidates with the desired skills. In short, if your workers know they can grow in their careers, they are more likely to be engaged and motivated at work. 

For example, one of the leading healthcare products manufacturers, Abbott, offers a professional development program to its new hires that focuses on six areas—IT, finance, manufacturing, engineering, quality assurance, and environmental health. Participants can choose a variety of learning paths and disciplines in their field of interest, personalizing their learning experiences.

3. Appreciate employees’ efforts 

An employee’s monthly or yearly review shouldn’t be the only time they get recognition for their contributions to the company. In order to make them feel their work is valuable and boost employee engagement, a simple gesture of praising your team and appreciating their efforts regularly can go a long way.

After all, nobody wants to be treated like cogs in a machine who just show up and do the work without doing something extra or innovative for the country.

Reward your top performers with cash prizes, a free weekend trip, or a gift card from their favorite e-commerce website—whatever that’s useful and makes them happy. In addition, highlight their success in the company’s newsletter or during online/offline meetings. This way, the employees will feel respected and appreciated by their team members and, in turn, become more engaged.

4. Promote transparency

Transparency is another proven factor for a company’s long-term success. When an organization is transparent in passing the information to its employees, it tends to win in several areas, such as higher employee engagement, a more robust company culture, and a comfortable environment that allows the employees to communicate freely.

On the other hand, a lack of transparency can make the employees clueless and not aligned with the company’s vision and values. Plus, if they feel that they’re intentionally left out, they may start losing the trust and confidence in the organization.

Therefore, updating employees about the crucial information as frequently as possible is a highly effective tactic to boost employee engagement. They should know what drives their company, the company goals, and how they can contribute towards achieving those goals.

Organizing periodic meetings and providing weekly team updates and newsletters can help employees know about the necessary information and show them that you’re working to make the organization a better place—with maximum transparency.

5. Encourage honest feedback

If you want to know what engages or disengages your employees, prioritize collecting their honest, real-time feedback. This allows companies to understand and respond to the employees’ needs and make quick and smart decisions. Plus, it will show them that you care and are willing to listen to what they have to say and act on it.

However, not taking any action as soon as possible can make them frustrated as they’ll feel that you’re not respectful of their time and are ignoring the matters that are important to them.

Create a system or a platform that allows employees to share their issues and ask questions to the HR people, c-suite executives, or other managers. Employee engagement surveys are also a great way to collect employee feedback. 

Leena AI comes with AI-powered employee engagement surveys that are personalized for every stage of the employee lifecycle. Plus, these provide real-time actionable insights into the areas you need to focus your efforts on to boost employee engagement.

6. Hold employees accountable 

In any organization, there are both non-performing and engaged employees. When a manager fails to hold the non-performers accountable for their work, they may think that it’s okay not to meet the company’s expectations and deadlines.

Plus, it gives the other team members a wrong impression and demotivates them, resulting in low employee engagement. And if you expect your engaged employees to go the extra mile and work on behalf of their peers, it will likely lead to burnout.

In order to keep your employees accountable, set up clear expectations about what they’re required to do, how you’ll measure success, and what you’re trying to achieve. Provide guidelines in writing mentioning the clear consequences if the work doesn’t get done within the assigned deadline. Not only that, do not settle for low-quality work just because you’re afraid to confront an underperforming employee.

7. Hold yourself accountable 

Managers, HRs, and executives serve as role models for their team members. They are expected to lead, coach, and supervise their team. 

Therefore, they need to demonstrate accountability in the workplace. If employees feel that leaders aren’t following the office rules correctly, they’ll lose trust and confidence in the management, leading to a toxic work environment and culture. Plus, it can disengage the employees and make them leave your company.

Here’s how you can set an example for your employees:

  • Completing your tasks within the assigned deadlines
  • Supporting your team members whenever required and solving their issues
  • Showing up on time and well-prepared in all company meetings

8. Redesign your office space

According to research, employees spend about 40% of their workday at their workstations. Hence, the design of your office space can have a massive impact on your employees’ engagement. 

Nowadays, the old-fashioned cubicles have become rare, and employees are demanding comfort, a variety of amenities, and cutting-edge technology. In order to meet the growing list of demands, companies are revamping their office setting to allow better collaboration and keep the employees satisfied. 

Various factors can affect engagement in both an office and a remote setup. Such as: 

  • Apply new paint to refresh your space and make sure the colors reflect the company’s personality. 
  • Make sure your workplace has ample space for open collaboration. However, if you need privacy in conference rooms, create a few private zones for closed-door meetings or private conversations. 
  • Lighting not only enhances the architecture of a place but also boosts productivity. 
  • Invest in comfortable furniture. Also, if your remote employees don’t have a dedicated workspace, provide them with an option to buy a desk and a chair for increased productivity when working. 
  • Last but not least, provide your employees with up-to-date software that allows them to work in their pajamas and interact face-to-face with co-workers.

9. Boost your communication initiatives

You want employees to believe that the organisation is prepared for and in front of this significant change. This includes providing managers and leaders with the means to demonstrate their awareness of ongoing change.

This does not imply that businesses must have all of their questions answered. In fact, humility and listening skills are essential. Consider increasing the frequency and depth of one-on-one and team conversations and promoting interaction as opposed to information broadcasts. Engage in open discussion, encourage the screening of assumptions, and disseminate strong research and insights.

Managers play a crucial role in shaping the employee experience of their team members.  To increase employee engagement, organisations should encourage managers to develop greater self-awareness and to view their leadership role as an integral part of their job.

10. Invest in new-age technology

To ensure a successful hybrid work culture, it is necessary to invest in the effective tools and technologies. During the pandemic, numerous organisations installed or upgraded fundamentals such as video chat and instant messaging. To adequately prepare for the long-term evolution of the workplace, however, leaders may need to rethink their entire operating model by implementing new-age technology that both enable employees to flourish and move the needle for the organisation.

This means investing in employee engagement tools instruments that are data-driven, AI-enabled, and entirely digital. Such tools  virtually integrate the workplace and ensure that business managers, team leaders, and team members can consistently collaborate, communicate, and connect. These intelligent tools are designed to help managers become better at leading and motivating teams, enabling them to increase productivity and impact business outcomes.

11. Prioritize employee well-being

Health and wellness are top priorities of HR professionals. It is no longer a developing trend; it is now a necessity. To increase employee engagement, it is crucial to evaluate, monitor, and act on feedback from feedback surveys.

When organisations transition to the new hybrid working paradigm, mental health should top the list. By arranging one-on-one meetings or hosting mental health awareness events, businesses can foster an environment in which employees feel at ease discussing their wellbeing. What you invest in employee relationships will determine their success in terms of productivity.  Psychological well-being of employees is becoming increasingly important for organisations that wish to boost productivity . Strong and healthy workplace culture is essential for employee satisfaction and productivity, in both remote and hybrid settings.

12. Encourage training and development

Globally, employee training and development programs are essential to the success of businesses. By providing employees with high-quality, comprehensive employee training programs, employers can assist them in enhancing their existing skills and filling in any knowledge gaps. Training and development programs for employees will also assist your team in attaining a higher level of competence, allowing all team members to share a common set of skills and knowledge. Your organization will benefit from a program that will strengthen any organisational weak links and evenly distribute the workload across your workforce.

An effective employee training program benefits businesses and employees in numerous ways, including:

  • Improved overall efficiency
  • Improved team morale
  • Improved ROI
  • Reduced supervisory requirements
  • Maintains organizational adaptability and sturdiness

13. Promote flexibility

Understanding how to structure your on-site working arrangements should be a top priority, given that hybrid working is here to stay. In some ways, lockdowns facilitated the most efficient working arrangements. Many individuals were required to work from home, and and therefore, remote interactions were prominent. 

The hynrid model is likely to be a lot more difficult. Some members of the team will elect to return to work, while others may find it physically or emotionally challenging. Consequently, a growing number of team members will be in one location, while the remainder will be on the other end of a video call. For those of who have encountered this, it can be quite demoralising often characterised by limited visibility or audio coverage of an in-room-focused meeting. Organizations will need to keep abreast of the effects hybrid work model will have on remote workers and the team’s overall behaviour. It will be essential for them to ensure that their team’s working practises remain engaging for everyone through the use of meeting management technology and practises.

3 Cs of employee engagement 

Beyond the strategies mentioned above, there are other factors that play a crucial role in boosting engagement in workers—the 3 Cs of employee engagement: career, competence, and care.


Every employee expects to grow their career in an organization. Promotions, rotations, and challenging assignments are some of the major factors they look at before joining. If the company spends dedicated time helping employees grow their careers, they will feel valuable and engaged.


Competence means the ability to grow. The learning and growth opportunities also play a huge role in improving engagement. Most employees look for competence-boosting activities such as regular workshops and training sessions that help them gain higher skills and move to the next level of their careers. If employees feel that their current job is helping them become more competitive for future opportunities, they are more likely to stay engaged.


Care is one of the critical elements that require managers to empathize with their employees and make them feel an essential part of their organization. The manager should make an effort to show small day-to-day caring gestures towards workers, such as asking about their family’s health, how they are feeling, whether they are satisfied with the workload, and so on. A manager who invests time in knowing their team’s well-being creates an engaging environment where employees perform the best.

Bottom line 

Implementing these employee engagement strategies might seem effective, but there’s no guarantee they’ll succeed in your organization. Also, setting them up and forgetting about them won’t do any good. 

You need to continually measure their impact and understand what’s working and what is not in your company. And then, put an employee engagement tool in action to help managers derive insights and actionables daily. 

Not sure about what software to choose? Leena AI can help transform your employee experience. Get in touch with our experts to learn more.

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