As we move towards a new era of hybrid work, social health and employee engagement are becoming more important for businesses. According to studies, social isolation actively harms workers by making them less effective and more likely to quit their jobs. In this blog, we’ll go over the importance of social health for businesses and teams as well as how creating communities may increase engagement, particularly for Gen Z and freelancers.
The rise of social isolation
Due to the pandemic, more individuals are working remotely, and one study found that social isolation is now affecting over 40% of the workforce. However, isolation isn’t just a result of remote work. Surprisingly, constant access to social media and messaging apps makes it easier for people to avoid having real social connections, which raises the level of loneliness. Due to their always-on, always-working lifestyles, younger employees and remote employees who don’t live close to family are particularly vulnerable to isolation.
Why does social health matter for businesses?
Social health should be the primary concern for businesses for a number of reasons. According to recent research, socially isolated individuals are 37% more likely to be unhappy with their jobs, show higher levels of stress, and have lower motivation. Additionally, isolated workers are more likely to take sick days and experience burnout. Higher employee turnover rates result, which is expensive because it necessitates hiring and training new employees all the time. Building social support has been linked to a 25% reduction in absenteeism, according to research. The average cost of turnover is 33% of an employee’s annual wage, so keeping your staff engaged can have a significant return on investment.
How community improves engagement for Gen Z
Social elements of work are given priority by younger generations, especially Gen Z. Employers must be flexible, but they also have to create a welcoming environment with a strong bond between employees. Businesses are able to fill this need by creating groups. Gen Z workers may feel less alone if they regularly join guided activities and games as well as informal video conversations. Additionally, it enables them to develop long-lasting relationships with their remote employees. Younger employees have more control over their jobs when they are involved in event planning. Additionally, community develops cooperation. Because they are better familiar with their coworkers on a personal level, remote workers might be more likely to support one another on plans. Higher morale, productivity, and general job satisfaction result from Gen Z employees.
Creating digital hangouts on OOt
Human Connectivity platforms such as OOt Social make it easy for companies to create more informal interactions among employees and build genuine connections. Ideas for team building include:
Holding weekly video “hangOOts” (hangouts) where anyone can join to keep up with coworkers
Hosting virtual happy hours through video on Fridays with optional games or guided discussions
Creating an online book or movie club so that staff members may talk about stories and ideas together
Measuring the impact of community
Businesses should keep track of how participation rates change as a result of creating virtual communities. Some metrics that can provide insights include emotional checkups on team communication channels, regular pulse surveys that measure staff happiness and sense of isolation, as well as turnover rates and retention over time. Watch for a rise in the positive language that staff members use online and a decline in concerns about feeling alone or disconnected from teammates. You might observe shifts in attitude, such as a preference for employee-driven collaboration over constant supervision or micromanagement. Communities are always changing, but regular assessment ensures that they are still meeting the fundamental social demands of shifting workforces.
As work distribution grows through remote setups, the importance of social health for companies will rise too. Businesses need social strategies to attract and keep top young talent. Particularly younger workers like Gen Z demand strong social bonds. Using online community platforms allows companies to foster connections between distant staff. These human relationships boost employee spirit no matter where they are based. Stronger bonds between co-workers enhance passion for their work. When workers feel more involved through close professional relationships, they work harder. Therefore, an engaged team is more productive. Prioritizing employee social lives and wellness provides major profits culturally. It also returns financial benefits for adaptable organizations. Evolving with shifting demands around blending career and personal lives pays off. OOt Social empowers companies to meet worker needs while driving ROI effectively.