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Best Employee Engagement Software - December 2020

Best Employee Experience Software, ROI calculator, questions to ask on demos, and more

Employee engagement software allows companies to continuously collect data on the health of their culture via employee surveys that gather feedback on individuals within the organization. This software category is similar to performance management software which allows companies to track the goals of an individual, group, division, and company.

Companies have increasing been using employee engagement software to build strong cultures for a few reasons: 

  • First, the number of employees quitting their jobs increased to 27.9% in 2019, compared to 23.7% in 2015. This is further confirmed by a survey of over 600 US businesses, concluding that as many as 63.3% of companies find it more difficult to retain employees than to hire them.
  • Second, aspects of corporate life such as culture and purpose have become more important with the rise of the millennial and gen z generations. 2 out of 3 millennials state their organization's purpose and culture are the reason why they chose to work there. Without a healthy culture, companies simply cannot retain young talent.
  • Lastly, People Analytics is becoming a more important discipline with 71% of companies regarding it as a high priority in their organizations. A top employee engagement solution allows HR to have more insight into what's going on in their organization.

Employee engagement software allows companies to keep their hand on the pulse of their organization to see what managers need more training, which teams have higher flight risk, and how key objectives are being met within the organization. Most of these solutions allow HR and People Analytics leaders to zoom in or out of their organization and put data around what is happening with their culture.

The below guide is meant to help HR and People teams to select the right engagement platform for their business. We've provided a shortlist along with general info on use cases, pitfalls, best practices, etc.  Good luck!

employee engagement tools

We spend hundreds of hours researching the best HR and recruiting software so you don’t have to.  We never take money from vendors during our research phase and rely heavily on practitioners and experts to help us recommend the right software.  Most of the vendors featured on our site have no commercial relationship with us, we want to feature the best software for our readers regardless. Learn more

We put in the effort to make this guide awesome

34
Hours Researched
5
Experts Consulted
22
Vendors Reviewed

Featured in

Top Employee Engagement Tools

We track thousands of HRTech solutions, these are the best Employee Engagement tools and services per our research and expert council as of November 2019

Reward Gateway

Review

Companies looking to boost their employee retention should take a look at Reward Gateway’s engagement solution (we also have them featured on our rewards page).  Their product offers employee communications, peer to peer recognition, automated awards and so much more.

Reward Gateway

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Reward Gateway

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Kazoo

Review

Kazoo’s employee engagement solution is coupled with rewards and performance management all in one platform. This three pronged approach allows People teams to use one vendor that seamlessly shares data across all three modules.

Kazoo

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It’s no wonder they have over 600 customers, which include Patagonia, Kaiser Permanente and Allianz. Also worth noting is they have a customer retention rate over 90%! Learn More About Kazoo

Tinypulse’s employee engagement software allows managers to have a holistic understanding of their organization to cut down on unexpected employee departures, build the right culture, and increase performance. Their solution is used by Microsoft, the Red Sox, Nike and many more.

TinyPulse

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Peakon is a data driven solution focused on allowing organizations to make better people decisions.  Their people analytics software includes real time management training modules that are suggested based on employee data.  While based in Denmark, their largest market is the US and their customers include Capgemini and Verizon.  Peakon powered data is being used in their customers’ annual reports alongside more traditional financial metrics.

Peakon

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Waggl is an employee voice platform that started with the unique insight that organizations can get more insights from employees by asking less, more often (relative to arduous annual surveys).  Waggl is a great way to understand what aspects of your culture need help.  Their product can help small teams all the way up through customers like 3M, Boeing and Microsoft.

Waggl

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Glint is now part of LinkedIn/Microsoft and definitely one of the pioneers in this space.  They are worth taking a look at, although it’s unclear how their solution will evolve post-acquisition, and how their pricing fits into the rest of your overall contract if you are an existing LinkedIn customer.

Glint

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CultureAmp was one of the first next generation employee engagement companies to hit the market, and did a great job of building community around their PeopleGeek meetups/newsletter.  They have 2,500 customers from Adobe to Pixar.

CultureAmp

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15Five has been around since 2011, and has over 2,000 customers that rely on their performance management suite to figure out what drives their employees, and how to incorporate this knowledge into feedback/coaching.  The product is easy enough to setup where they didn’t even have a sales team the first 6 years of the business.

15five

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Reflektive’s software covers the gambit of performance management to employee engagement.  This means their product allows you to measure and track OKRs, 1:1’s, real time employee engagement, etc all from one platform.  Reflektive’s customers include Comcast and Dollar Shave Club.

Reflektive

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7Geese is an employee first performance management system which has focused on the under-resourced HR teams of small to mid sized companies.  They are very focused on tracking OKRs and allowing employees to see how their actions are contributing to the overall performance of the organization. 7Geese has a dedicated team of talent advisors who can help you get started, all of whom have backgrounds in both HR and change management.

7Geese

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Emplify uses a data driven methodology to understand the state of engagement in the org (which they point out, is different than happiness/satisfaction!), and then uses their dedicated engagement strategists and manager coaches to help organizations action this data.  They look at 17 different data points across the organization, and strive to get statistically significant data on a regular cadence that aligns with your business’s metrics.

Emplify

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Workvivo is an enterprise social network that becomes the central hub for employee communication. Employees can share content, give one another shoutouts, and tie company news/events back to values. Their product looks and feels like a traditional social network. This familiar experience drives engagement, collaboration, and belonging.

Workvivo

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CultureIQ is an employee engagement platform that ties employee listening to culture, and culture to business strategy. Their offering is part SaaS, part high touch consultants that will help you plan and execute your program. This is helpful especially for their core target of large enterprise customers that include Sanofi, AirCanada, AXA, and many more.

CultureIQ

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Final Advice on Employee Engagement Software + Our Best Pro Tip

We wrote a bit about cross functional buying committees in the past and think they are so relevant for employee engagement platforms.

A cross functional buying committee is a group of 5-10 people who care about a given topic, in this case culture/retention.  They brainstorm, and then figure out the best way to tackle the issue is to execute some sort of initiative, in this case buy employee engagement software.  Then, there are usually 1-2 leaders in the group who do all the work of executing the initiative.  They usually have KPIs related to the results of the initiative - and of course in this case will be the people who are in charge of talent management.

There are some huge benefits to having this committee.  First off, getting budget for your initiative is so much easier.  You now have leaders from marketing, sales, engineering, etc on your side when you go to the CFO to get money.  They can help you pitch, and throw their weight behind the initiative.

You also have the help of every organization during implementation.  This is especially useful when rolling out a tool like employee engagement where individuals need to be bought into the initiative across all different functions.  Having the person from your engineering team who’s on the committee tell their team why they need to use a solution can resonate a lot more than someone from outside of the organization doing the same.

Final Advice

The best employee engagement software is a game changer for organizations looking to supercharge their workplace experience, and decrease employee turnover.  There are no silver bullets when it comes to disengaged employees or having perfect insights into what’s going on with your business.  However, this is a great place to start.

If your company needs a better way to start gathering employee feedback, or is simply looking for ways to improve culture, then our suggestion is to start by getting demos with 2-3 of the top employee engagement software companies in order to figure out the details around how this would work within your organization.  Good luck!

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