Empower your employees with the freedom of choice

February 28, 2024

Have you ever eagerly stepped into a new role excited about the potential it could bring, only to find out the onboarding experience didn't quite meet your expectations? Many of us can relate to this familiar challenge of not experiencing the ideal employee onboarding process. Often, it lacks that touch of personalization that truly gets new hires/employees off to a flying start.

This is a missed opportunity, especially when it comes to allowing new employees to select the work equipment, or productivity tools of their choice. Considering the findings from our recent Employee Choice survey on LinkedIn, around 31% of employees shared that their employers selected their work equipment without considering their specific needs or seeking their input. 

In this article, we’ll shed light on the role of employee empowerment in the workplace, highlighting how it serves as a key driver for companies to attain or maintain a competitive edge. A special emphasis is placed on the empowering element of granting employees the freedom of choice in their work.

Key takeaways

This article discusses the most preferred strategies to empower your employees with freedom of choice. You will gain insight into:

  • Power of hyper-personalization: Understanding the “one size doesn’t fit all” model in employee choice.
  • Freedom to innovate: Understanding how positive employee experience, including autonomy and engagement, reduces turnover, attracts top talent, and fosters innovation, exemplified by companies like Google and 3M, with a belief that a positive organizational culture enhances job satisfaction.
  • Freedom to choose work location: While remote work has become a fundamental need, challenges arise as many workplaces lack autonomy in their work model, leading to dissatisfaction, despite a notable 35% increase in productivity for remote workers, as highlighted in a Forbes survey.
  • Freedom to choose work equipment: Providing appropriate hardware and software to employees enhances efficiency and satisfaction. According to a Slingshot survey, there is a preference for smarter workplace tools, indicating that offering a variety of devices instills trust and enables employees.

In a recent article, Forbes brought attention to the pressing issues faced by employees in the modern workplace, emphasizing the frustration experienced by U.S. workers. Almost 96% expressed discontent with the tools given to handle their workload.

Whether you're an employee or an employer, you've likely longed for a workplace that not only ignites your passion but also prioritizes personal connections and values its employees. The companies that excel in this area all share a common denominator - a strong emphasis on empowering their employees.

Power of hyper-personalization

In today's fast-paced and competitive business world, employee empowerment isn't just a strategic advantage; it's an imperative for maintaining a competitive edge. But how can companies achieve this? One transformative strategy is to adopt an Employee Choice or Employee-First approach. This involves empowering teams by understanding and addressing each employee's distinct needs through hyper-personalization.

Hyper-personalization in the workplace is like having a personalized playbook for each team member. It's an approach that goes beyond the old "one-size-fits-all" mentality, recognizing individual working styles, strengths, and preferences. Implementing a hyper-personalized approach creates a work culture that values autonomy and flexibility and sets the stage for improved productivity, higher engagement, and overall well-being, laying the solid foundation for organizational success.

Freedom to innovate

Positive employee experience goes beyond the office perks like a well-stocked kitchen or bottomless beverage options. It is a dynamic environment that caters to individual needs, fostering a human connection where employees can authentically bring more of their complete selves into the workplace. When employees have the autonomy to make decisions that impact their work, they are more likely to experience job satisfaction and fulfillment. This reduces turnover and further helps attract top talent to the organization.

A recent Gallup study highlights that achieving higher levels of employee engagement can lead to a notable 23% improvement in profitability for organizations. When employees feel empowered, they are more likely to take ownership of their tasks, leading to increased productivity and better outcomes for the company.

One such example is Google. Employees at Google are encouraged to spend 20% of their time on projects of their choosing. This freedom has led to innovative products such as Gmail and Google Maps, showcasing the tangible benefits of employee empowerment.
Another brilliant example is 3M's innovative culture, epitomized by its 15% time policy that allows employees to allocate a portion of their workweek to pursue projects of their choosing. This freedom has led to inventions such as Post-it Notes, demonstrating the power of employee choice in driving innovation. According to Select Software Reviews, 92% of workers believe working in a company with a solid and positive organizational culture increases job satisfaction.

Read more: Voices & Choices # 1 Interview Series by Velory - Featuring Sebastian Fuchs

Freedom to choose work location

In the wake of the post-pandemic era, the freedom to work from anywhere has become more than a workplace perk – it's a fundamental need. Allowing employees to choose their work location is not just about tasks but empowering individuals to create a work-life balance, enhancing satisfaction, and increasing productivity. A Boston Consulting Group survey of 1500 individuals revealed that 62% don't have a say in their work model policy, with 39% stating their company decides their work location, leading to 24% dissatisfaction.

Surveys, like Forbes Advisor’s, highlight a notable 35% increase in productivity for remote workers. On the flip side, an Owl Labs study reveals that 60% of managers worry about decreased productivity, while 62% of workers reported feeling more productive working remotely.

Forbes Adviser adds another layer, noting that 53% of people find it challenging to connect with colleagues in a remote setting. In navigating the evolving work landscape, balancing the benefits of flexibility with addressing challenges like reduced productivity and connectivity remains crucial.

Freedom to choose work equipment

Giving employees access to the right hardware and software ensures they have the tools to perform their jobs effectively. Whether it’s providing laptops, smartphones, or specialized software applications, empowering employees with the technology they prefer enhances their efficiency and satisfaction. 80% of employees feel that a workplace with the necessary tools and technology positively affects their job satisfaction.

In a survey by Slingshot involving 1,857 individuals, the key findings reveal that teams want tools that make work smarter, not harder. Most prefer a unified workplace solution that simplifies tasks and boosts efficiency. By investing in the latest technology, companies demonstrate their commitment to supporting employee success and innovation.

Additionally, offering device choice demonstrates trust in employees' judgment and promotes a culture of autonomy and empowerment.

In conclusion, prioritizing employee empowerment and freedom of choice isn't just a passing trend—it's a critical strategy for businesses navigating the complexities of today's dynamic landscape. Building a culture that values empowerment and flexibility in work arrangements enhances employee engagement, enriches the overall work experience, fosters a culture of innovation, and establishes trust and loyalty within the workforce.

An innovative platform like Velory, with its advanced IT asset management system and integrated store putting Employee Choice at the forefront, can help you achieve all these goals. Are you ready to unlock the full potential of your employees and ensure sustained success in the long run?