This blog post is part of a monthly series highlighting Brightidea’s nine innovation apps. Each month, we’ll focus on one app and explain how it can increase the engagement, productivity, and success of your innovation program.
One of the hallmarks of corporate success is employee engagement. Since an engaged employee is one who’s proud and enthusiastic about her work, she’s more likely to act in ways to advance a company’s interests and bolster its reputation. Anything that increases that engagement will have a significant and measurable impact on a company’s bottom line.
It’s a connection, in fact, that increasingly more research is shedding light on. Companies that report greater employee engagement have higher levels of shareholder value and up to 2.5 times more revenue than those with low engagement. Similarly, disengaged employees end up costing businesses in the U.S. an average of $450 billion per year in lost productivity. With statistics like that, more and more companies are becoming aware of the effects of engagement on profitability and investing in ways to increase it.
Discuss: An App Designed to Increase Employee Engagement
So it stands to reason that ever since its launch in the fall, there’s been a great deal of buzz around our new Discuss app. After all, as a way to get employees talking about a theme of key interest to company leadership, Discuss was specifically designed to boost employee engagement. And that’s certainly something worth talking about.
Interestingly, employee engagement also happens to be an important aspect of a corporate innovation program. Because innovation success hinges on crowdsourcing new ideas, anything that engages employees around a topic of innovation will positively impact its evolution. It’s a numbers game: the more people are involved in seeding ideas, the more likely those seeds will bear fruit. A great way to start an innovation program with this process is with an application that easily connects employees in a companywide conversation. Discuss gets you there quickly and easily.
A Measurable Difference To Your Bottom Line
What’s more, as a tool for corporate success, Discuss adds measurable value to an executive team. By enabling leadership to initiate a large-scale, two-way conversation—even across geographically dispersed offices and on
the fly through mobile devices—the app connects them with employees in a way that makes everyone feel engaged. Employees are given a voice and executives a way to listen. And it has begun to make a difference for a number of companies.
One such company is the Unum Group. This $10-billion insurance firm with numerous offices worldwide has used the app to centralize its innovation efforts and propagate a culture of collaborative innovation across the entire company. Unum’s innovation program leader, Tim Sox, recently said, “Brightidea has helped us to reach a much larger portion of our employee population.”
Of course, the conversations initiated with the Discuss app don’t have to involve innovation, per se. They can be about any topic of interest either to company leadership or its emplyee base. To name a few:
- Thoughts on an industry trend impacting the company
- Attitudes about a change in company policy
- Feelings about a merger or acquisition
Regardless of the topic, the ability to initiate a conversation is ultimately a service of immense value that a program manager can bring to a company.
Advanced Capabilities to Get People Talking
Dashboards to Quantify and Locate Engagement. Adding to that value is the app’s ability to track and measure engagement. The app’s detailed dashboard displays exactly where participation in a discussion is coming from, both by department and geographical location. It also displays the amount of cross-departmental activity, providing insights into discussions across your organization’s silos. These features are key because in order for information about engagement to be useful, it has to be quantified.
Customizable Microsite. Because the overall look and feel of Discuss can be customized to feature a company’s branding, employees using the app will feel even further engaged. Branding, after all, is an important part of any company experience.
With features like this, it’s easy to see why there’s been a lot of, well, talk about our Discuss app. It excels at connecting a large number of colleagues in conversation and empowering them with tools to share perspectives and exchange discussion notes with one another. And in a business climate that increasingly demands employee engagement for long-term success, a tool that facilitates that can bring to a company tremendous value—and ultimately success.