Remote Employee Engagement

Although some businesses have begun the return to the physical office as COVID-19 restrictions ease in some regions, many are still operating with a remote workforce. Without the in-person interactions available through a physical workspace, how do leaders keep remote teams engaged?

In this One-Minute Insight Report, Pulse surveyed over 250 tech decision-makers to understand:

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Remote Employee Engagement

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Data collected from March 20 - April 7, 2021

Total respondents: 251 tech decision-makers

One-on-ones the go-to for remote employee engagement—and many are exploring engagement-tracking technology

While 84% of leaders conduct regular one-on-ones with employees, most aren’t engaging employees via other means.

When teams do arrange ways to engage employees remotely, 25-50% tend to show up.

“We have tried virtual exercise class[es] [and] virtual activities, but we find most employees [would] rather switch off the screen for some offline time.”

- Manager, small-medium business

Half (50%) of respondents have a policy at their organization that allows employees to expense online courses for skills development, and 40% give time for personal development projects.

While most (81%) leaders aren’t using technology to track employee engagement currently, over a third (35%) are exploring the idea.

“We have blocked every Friday afternoon for no meetings and have an org quarterly day off, both of which have been effective.”

- C-suite, large enterprise

“Be empathetic, flexible, supportive and check in regularly with employees to see how they are doing. Make it a point to schedule in breaks and non-work related items.”

- Director, small-medium business

Meeting fatigue the main struggle for leaders—though many would explore gamified meetings if employees wanted to

From a personal viewpoint, leaders highlight remote meeting fatigue (64%) and not being able to unplug after work (58%) as the main things they struggle with when working remotely.

Most leaders (59%) report that an IT employee can expect to have 3 - 5 daily meetings.

Perhaps one way to tackle meeting fatigue is through gamifying meetings, or to attend them as “virtual beings” (avatars). 43% of decision-makers say they would explore the idea if employees wanted to. However, almost a quarter (24%) have no desire to participate in meetings as a virtual being.

“I have been thinking of holding online party games … but the problem would be that since many of my team are not native English speakers, they could feel disadvantaged.”

- C-suite, large enterprise

Morale holding firm but most leaders believe employees want to return to the physical office

Despite more than a year of the COVID-19 pandemic, 89% leaders are reporting a positive team morale.

Two-thirds (66%) of leaders believe that their employees want to make a return to the physical office.

“I have worked remotely for 6 years. Every morning at 8:30 we have a morning video call, where we’ll check in with what projects we have going on. They usually last about 15 minutes - video is optional, and we can check in on projects with each other, ask questions, talk about personal milestones like birthdays … After years of doing this we’ve gotten to know each other much better than we ever did working in person.”

- C-suite, large business

Respondent Breakdown


Remote Employee Engagement

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About Pulse

Pulse is a social research platform trusted by technology leaders around the world. These leaders rely on the community to make connections, share knowledge, get advice, and stay on top of current trends in the technology space. The questions, polls, and surveys posted in the platform are curated in Pulse's One-Minute Insight reports, which reflect what technology leaders care about right now—and in the rapidly evolving world of software, real-time data and insights in what matters most.