Top 8 Features of an Employee Engagement App

May 2023
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Find out how an Employee Engagement App can boost your workforce's morale, communication, and output.

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If you’re struggling to keep your employees fully engaged, connected, and committed to your organization, you're not alone in this challenge. The game-changing solution that makes all the difference is an employee engagement app. What makes it stand out from other platforms? It can be installed right there on each employee's smartphone in seconds—the device they carry throughout the day. With this kind of access and convenience, it delivers results faster than other employee tools.

In this post, we'll look at the common challenges other companies face similar to yours and see how they improved them using an employee engagement app. Plus, we'll list the top 8 powerful employee engagement app features you should consider when evaluating an employee app, so you can lift employee engagement and alignment levels across your company in 2023.

What is an employee engagement app?

An employee engagement app is a smartphone app for companies and their employees to use. Employees download it to help them do their jobs better and communicate with each other. They use it for work, and because it's on their cellphone, it's easy to access. Using the app, people at work can chat with work colleagues, catch up on new updates about what's happening in their workplace, review their tasks and mark them as complete, answer surveys, check important company files, give feedback on how they're feeling, check their shift schedule, and more. The whole point of the app is to help them connect with their co-workers instantly, have access to work-related information when they need it, and feel happier about their job.

How to Improve Employee Engagement: Overcoming Workforce Challenges

Driving Motivation Using Clear Goals with an App

Challenge: As a manager, one of the biggest challenges I face is ensuring my remote and off-site team members feel engaged and know what’s important for us to get done today. One common issue I often see is that employees can feel lost or unmotivated when I don’t provide clear goals or a way for both of us to measure their progress.
Solution: To address this challenge, I’ve found that an employee management app can be incredibly helpful. With the app, I can assign tasks. And team members can see their current priority and mark the task as completed or give it a percentage of completion. Employees can see how their individual tasks are part of a key result that we need to meet to achieve our goals. Not only can I track progress in real-time, (which means I interrupt them less), but team members can see how their work is contributing to the key results and goals of the business. This helps to keep our company goals top of mind and provides a constant reminder of how their work is contributing to the bigger picture.

Improving Team Communication and Recognition with an App

Challenge: Managing remote or off-site teams can be quite challenging at times. I noticed that some colleagues forgot how important it is to just be polite, or even acknowledge each other's work. It was frustrating because it led to rude and direct requests, a lack of recognition for hard work, and a general sense of feeling like people were feeling a bit disconnected. As a manager, I wanted my team members to feel engaged and encourage more positive communication and teamwork.
Solution: I realized that we needed to improve communication and recognition among our team members, so we decided to try out an employee communication app. It allowed our employees to easily share information, ideas, and feedback through instant chat, social feeds, and recognition posts. At our company, team members and managers have a neat feature called shout outs to recognize and appreciate each other's work. These shout outs show up in our company feed, so everyone gets to see the good things our people are doing. We even have fun categories like "Awesome Sauce" for great ideas and "Fantastic Feats" for outstanding performance. The best part is that everyone can jump in and pile on the praise by leaving comments, likes, and reactions. It really helps us to promote a positive culture of communication and teamwork. We've noticed improved collaboration and and uptick in satisfaction among our teams. It's been a game-changer!

Reducing Micromanagement and Building Trust with an Employee Engagement App

Challenge: As a leader, I was noticing that some of our off site and hybrid team members were feeling like they were being micromanaged and expressed frustration about a perceived lack of trust in their ability to complete tasks independently. This tension between our managers and employees led to disengagement and even pushed talented employees to seek other work. After looking at work-related subreddits, I realized that this was a common issue across many companies and industries.
Solution: To address the issue of micromanagement and lack of trust among our remote and frontline employees, we decided to try out an employee engagement app. It had features like task assignments and real-time updates, which helped reduce the need for constant check-ins and micromanagement from managers. Employees could update their task status, communicate progress and any issues they encountered, and work independently. The app's informal chat feature also helped everyone build trust and made it easier for collaboration between team members and managers. We saw a reduction in micromanagement-related complaints, and the app helped to foster a more positive work culture overall.

Boosting Workplace Well-Being: Anonymous Check-Ins with an App

Challenge: As a leader of geographically distributed teams, it's always a challenge to gauge the mood and energy of our teams, especially when identifying potential conflicts or risks. We knew we needed to create a safe space that would encourage open dialogue and promote well-being in the workplace, given the increased regulations around psychosocial hazards. However, quick check-ins proved to be challenging, and some team members preferred to remain anonymous, making it difficult to identify and assess psychological risks in the workplace. We wanted to make sure everyone knew how important it was to concentrate on wellness at work, both for themselves and as a team.
Solution: We found a solution that really worked for us - an employee management mobile app that let our team members share how they were feeling anonymously, right from their cellphones. It helped us keep an eye on any trends or issues and provide in-app support to those who asked for it. We were able to be proactive about addressing any risks or concerns, and it really made a difference in promoting the well-being of our teams. It was a tool that we could feel good about using because it was aligned with our commitment to creating a healthy, happy workplace culture.

The 5 Main Challenges Employee Engagement Apps Solve?

Employee management apps can be an effective tool for improving company culture by encouraging employee communication, collaboration, and engagement. Here are some ways that employee management apps can help improve company culture and output:

1. Communication

Employee apps can help facilitate communication between employees and management, improving transparency and creating a more open and inclusive workplace culture. By providing a platform for employees to share ideas, ask questions, and provide feedback, employee apps help create a culture of collaboration and mutual respect.

2. Recognition 

Employee apps can help foster a culture of recognition by giving employees a platform to celebrate the accomplishments and successes of their coworkers. This can include features such as peer recognition, and feedback mechanisms that encourage positive feedback and recognition.

3. Learning and Development 

Employee apps can help promote a culture of continuous learning and development by providing employees with access to training materials, mentorship programs through chat channels, and other resources. This can help employees feel supported and encouraged to grow and develop their skills, which can lead to increased job satisfaction and engagement.

4. Employee Output

Employee apps can help employees manage their tasks and projects more efficiently by providing them with tools such as project management software and to-do lists. This can help employees prioritize their tasks, track their progress, and collaborate with colleagues, which can improve productivity and reduce stress. Additionally, employee apps can help employees set goals and track their performance, which can lead to increased motivation and a sense of accomplishment.

5. Employee Engagement:

Employee apps can help improve employee engagement by providing employees with a platform to share their ideas, provide feedback, and participate in company-wide initiatives. This can help employees feel more connected to the company and invested in its success.

Top 8 Features to Consider When Choosing an Employee Engagement App

If you want to find the best mobile app for your company's employees, there are a few key things to look for. These features can help your employees communicate, feel more engaged about their role, work together, and be more productive. They can also help streamline workflows and improve efficiency across the board. 

Feature 1: Instant Team Messaging

Chat Instant Messaging

One of the key features of an employee engagement app is real time chat. Employees can communicate with each other in real time, no matter where they are. Whether they're in the office, working from home, or on the go, they can stay connected and collaborate seamlessly.

A chat feature built into an employee app improves communication efficiency significantly, resulting in faster decision-making and more timely feedback at work.

Direct Messaging

In addition to group chats, employee apps should also have direct messaging capabilities. This allows employees to communicate with each other one-on-one, which can be especially useful for private conversations or discussing sensitive information.

Chat Channels

Another important feature of employee apps is the ability to create chat channels. This allows employees to organize their conversations around specific topics or projects. It also makes it easier for new employees to find relevant information and jump into conversations.

Empowering Casual Workers

A high-quality employee management app with chat functionality can help bridge the communication gap for casual employees who don't have a company email. By using their personal email or phone number to access the app, they can participate in chat channels and easily share work-related content like photos and videos. It helps your casual and part time workforce feel valued and included. When your workforce can easily message managers or team members or even join a channel to find out what’s happening, it will improve their productivity, job satisfaction, and ultimately their retention. 


Finally, employee apps should allow users to easily add different types of content to their chats. This includes videos, photos, documents, and other work-related content. This can help employees share information more easily and collaborate instantly, even when they're not in the same place.

Feature 2: Task Management

Task management is critical to the success of any team. Whether you're part of a hybrid or entirely remote workforce, keeping track of tasks is critical to ensuring that everything gets done on time. A reliable task management system enables team members to easily assign tasks, view them in a checklist, set reminders, mark them as done, and talk about them with ease. With the right tools, your teams can stay organized, focused, and on top of their tasks, no matter where they're working from.

Assigning Tasks

One of the most important features of an employee app is the ability to assign tasks to team members. This feature lets managers assign tasks, track progress, and ensure that everyone is working on the most important jobs first. Team members can easily see what tasks they’ve been assigned and when they're due. This visibility ensures that everyone is accountable for their tasks, and that no job falls through the cracks.

Seeing Tasks in Checklist

Along with task assignment, mobile task management should provide a checklist view of all tasks that must be completed. This view shows team members at a glance which tasks they need to complete, which need to be completed soon, and which are past due. By making things more visible, your teams can keep track of their tasks so that they don't forget anything important.

Reminders in Fast-Paced Industries

If you work in a fast-paced or customer-facing industry such as healthcare, retail and hospitality, keeping track of your tasks and coordinating with others can be a challenge. Reminders can be a lifesaver in these situations. By turning on notification reminders for tasks with dependencies, team members can quickly focus so they can get their work done in time, preventing delays for other team members. This simple but powerful feature really helps teams stay organized.

Healthcare, retail, and hospitality are fast-paced industries that benefit from employee apps that assign tasks, track progress, and send reminders. These features improve employee communication and productivity.

Task Completion Tracking

When a team member completes a task, they should be able to mark it as done. This feature gives employees a sense of accomplishment and allows team members to see their progress in completing tasks. This feature provides an easy way for managers to stay up-to-date with the work their teams are doing, and to identify any potential issues that are holding them back.

Task Management Transparency

A "Can't Complete" option within an employee work management app allows team members to quickly notify team leaders if they are unable to complete a task. When they tap "can't complete," they can add comments, photos, and communicate why they are unable to complete a task or add possible workarounds. It helps them collaborate with their team to find a solution. This transparency into task progress helps everyone adapt, adjust, and reassign tasks as needed.

Task Notifications

It's critical to keep your team members informed of any changes or updates to tasks in a fast-paced work environment, but in busy environments, visual notifications like email may not be enough. As a result, task management in an employee app should include audio notifications that can be heard over background noise. This feature can send both visual and audible alerts to your team members when changes or updates are made to tasks, so they can respond quickly. This way, you can keep your team informed and on track even in difficult work environments.

Feature 3: People Directory

Empowering Employee Identities. Giving Employees A Voice

A team directory within an employee management app promotes diversity and inclusion by allowing team members to represent themselves in a way that feels natural to them. They can do this by using their preferred pronouns, nickname, and profile picture, which contributes to a more welcoming and inclusive workplace. By giving your teams control over how they present themselves, you foster an environment where everyone feels valued and respected.

A staff communication app with a people directory empowers and improves teamwork. From one simple interface, you can find and connect with colleagues, personalize your profile, and promote a diverse and inclusive workplace culture.

Communicate Instantly

Another important benefit of a team directory is that it makes it easier to communicate with your coworkers. You can easily search or browse for team members, start a call, chat, or send an email all from one interface. This eliminates the need to spend time searching for people and their contact information in your emails.

Expertise Finder

Another great feature of a people directory in a employee management app is that it makes it easy for team members to search for and find colleagues with the expertise they need to complete a task or project. This feature saves time and reduces frustration by connecting team members with the right resources.

People Profiles

Having access to employee profiles from an employee app can help foster a sense of community and enhance collaboration for everyone, especially for employees who may never meet everyone in person. By browsing profiles and discovering shared interests, skills, and backgrounds, team members can feel more comfortable striking up conversations and building relationships. This feature increases the ability for people to connect and promotes a positive workplace culture, regardless of location.

Feature 4: Company News Feed 

This feature lets companies communicate important information and updates to their employees, especially for remote, frontline and hybrid teams. Employees can access these posts from the app and stay informed about company news or changes. They can also like, comment, and react to the posts, which gives everyone a chance to be heard and encourages engagement and a sense of belonging at work. 

Communication, morale, and brand reputation improve with staff apps. Using analytics and engagement metrics, you can improve corporate communication and recognition to build a great company culture.

Streamlined Scheduling

Scheduling can be made easier and more efficient with an employee management app. Managers can plan and schedule announcements ahead of time, ensuring that notifications are sent at the most convenient time for employees based on their time zones. This reduces unnecessary interruptions and streamlines communication. By launching campaigns when your team is most likely to be receptive to them, you can increase the likelihood of employees engaging with your content. This type of scheduling feature improves communication and helps your company achieve better results.

Boost Your Comms Within The App 

Boosting your communication campaigns means making sure your employees see and read them. The ‘Boost’ feature is best saved for instances when you want to highlight a short but important message with a pop-up on your team's device, so they don’t miss it. It's helpful for busy employees who can't check every message. The pop-up covers the screen, making it hard to ignore. While your team members can swipe to postpone reading it, the app keeps reminding them until they have read and acknowledged it. This ensures that all employees stay informed, particularly those who are constantly on the move or have a high workload.

Real Time Alerts at Work

Another important feature of a work team app to consider is alerting people. While boosting communication campaigns ensures that teams see, read, and acknowledge important information via pop-ups on their devices. Alerts, on the other hand, send real-time emergency notifications to employees' devices. Both features ensure that employees are kept informed and can act on that information.

Uplift Morale through Recognition

Boosting morale and motivation across teams can be done easily through recognition. With the app's recognition feature, peers, managers, and leaders can show gratitude and acknowledge each other's accomplishments. 

All you need to do is post a recognition message with a personalized note and icon, and you'll see positive vibes spread throughout the organization. Whether your app has dedicated icons or integrated messaging and communication features, you can use recognition that aligns with your company values to show appreciation. 

For example, if one of your company values is "Get Feedback Early," and one of your team members pilots a new process, you can use a corresponding icon to recognize their work. This recognition feature not only helps employees and teams understand the company's culture and values but also makes them feel valued and appreciated, which leads to increased engagement and job satisfaction.

Analytics and Engagement

The analytics and engagement features of an employee management app let you track your team's engagement and how well they communicate. This is especially helpful for remote, offsite and hybrid teams, which are spread out and rely more on digital channels than face-to-face communication.

Engagement metrics can also help businesses identify which team members may require additional support or guidance, as well as delve deeper into the reasons why they are not posting or engaging, and where communication breakdowns or misunderstandings may exist. Businesses can use this feature to create a team communication strategy that is appealing to their employees and leads to increased employee engagement, productivity, and job satisfaction at work.

Feature 5: Streamline Operations with Forms 

Employee management apps with built-in forms can make an employee's workday less stressful by simplifying routine tasks. With the forms, they can skip the hassle of searching for the right person to send an email to and just submit their request through the app.

In addition, the app can automate your operational requests. For instance, if your technicians need equipment or parts, they can submit a request through the app, which will automatically check if the items are in stock. If it is, the request will be approved, and the technicians will be notified of the delivery date. If not, the app will initiate an order to ensure they get what they need. This saves everyone a lot of time and effort.

Forms in a workforce employee app save time at work. Employees can quickly request time off, submit expense reimbursements, order materials or parts, report problems, and more with customized forms.

Improve Day-to-Day Business Operations

If you're a business looking to improve your day-to-day operations, an employee mobile app with customizable forms is a valuable tool to consider.

These apps typically come with a web-based administration tool that lets you create and design forms that are tailored to your business needs. Additionally, some apps offer pre-built forms that cater to common business operations.

Once you've created and published the forms, your employees can easily access them on their mobile devices. 

This means your team members can submit requests for things like:

  • Time off
  • Expense reimbursements, 
  • Material or parts, 
  • Incident reports, 
  • Reporting Forms
  • Delivery Logs
  • Equipment inspections
  • Onboarding forms
  • Safety Reports
  • Daily reports

Automate Operational Form Workflows

When choosing an employee app, look for one that lets you customize workflows so that you can automate routine tasks like approvals, notifications, and reminders in the app. A good app should have a user-friendly interface and drag-and-drop tools that don't require coding skills.

For example, suppose a technician in the field uses the company app to fill out a form to request a part. Workflows can be set up to automatically notify the technician of the delivery date and provide tracking information, which means they can plan ahead.

The employee app should also give managers real-time visibility into the progress of workflows, so they can identify any issues and address them quickly.

Customizable workflows are a valuable feature to look for in an employee mobile app. By automating routine tasks and streamlining approvals and reminders, you can boost workplace productivity and efficiency.

Maximize Efficiency with App Integrations

When it comes to the employee management app, you should be wondering what kind of integration options it provides. 

Does it include APIs and pre-built connectors? Depending on your business operations, you’ll want to know if the app can be integrated down the road to avoid issues or data inconsistencies. 

For example, integrating an employee app with other systems like payroll and HRIS brings several benefits to your company. Staff will be able to fill out time sheets, enter their work hours, tasks completed, and other necessary information right into the app's forms, and submit it all digitally. 

What's more, integrations automatically pull employee details like name, job title, employee number, and job codes from your HRIS system, so people at work don't have to waste any time typing that stuff in. And the best part? When they submit their timesheets, the information is transferred to the HRIS system, making it simple to track employee hours and streamline payroll processing. 

Tracking and Reporting On Daily Business Operations

When looking for an app to streamline your business operations, it's important to consider its tracking and analytics features. Make sure the app provides a web interface that generates reports, so you can see which form processes are being used the most and which ones might need improving. This information will help you prioritize which forms to optimize for better efficiency.

Also, look for an app that keeps track of approval times and shows you where your workflows are getting stuck. That way you can improve and streamline your workflows even more, reduce wait times, and ensure your teams are able to work with maximum efficiency.

Feature 6: Accessing and Sharing Work Related Documents

In some industries, such as banking, finance and healthcare, employees often use their devices to access and retrieve documents and files from their app.
In an employee mobile app, you can access files in several ways.

Typically, you can log in to the app and navigate to the "Documents" or "Files" section. From there, you can browse your folders, and search for specific files from within the app’s dedicated file storage and organization system, which gives you greater control and security.

Other apps may require authentication before allowing access to files stored in Google Drive or Office 365 OneDrive. Once authenticated, the employee would be able to browse and access their files stored in these cloud storage services through the employee app. 

The main goal is to provide your employees with an easy-to-use interface for accessing and managing work-related documents, no matter where they are stored.

Employee experience apps let staff access and share documents in a safe way. Offline, you can search for, manage, and look at work-related files. Secure document features make it easier to work together and get more done.

Secure Employee File Access

In industries like healthcare, finance, and banking, where there are large amounts of paperwork, data security and confidentiality are paramount. When selecting an employee app for accessing work-related files, security features should be a top priority. 

The app should have strong encryption to protect sensitive data and only let authorized people access files. Multi-factor authentication also provides an extra layer of protection. The app should also support different file types, such as PDFs, images, and videos. Finally, as collaboration is crucial in many finance and banking roles, the app should allow for easy file sharing and chat among colleagues.

Offline access to work documents

An app for employees should give them safe access to work-related files and let them work offline when they need to. This feature is particularly useful in remote locations where employees may not have reliable internet access. By allowing offline access, the app allows employees to continue working on important documents even when they are not connected to the internet and syncs their changes back to the cloud once they reconnect. This ensures that work is completed uninterrupted.

Feature 7: Create a Supportive Work Culture

When considering an employee management app, it's important to prioritize the well-being of your teams. Look for features that support and encourage a healthy work culture, such as the ability for employees to anonymously share their emotions and receive support through the app. 

Real-time assessments and trend insights can help you stay ahead of your team's emotional health by monitoring changes in well-being over time. By using these features, managers can gain valuable insights into the emotional well-being of their teams, and take proactive steps to address any issues before they escalate. 

Emotional Pulse Tracking

Look for an employee app that includes Emotional Pulse Tracking to help monitor the emotional well-being of your team. A feature like this allows individuals to log their emotional state on their device at a chosen frequency and time, providing insights to individuals and teams about their emotional patterns. The app can identify individuals at risk and encourage them to invite support. The privacy of individuals is always maintained unless they choose to invite trusted support. The app offers valuable insights into team trends and leaders can use this information to improve team culture. 

Staff apps improve morale, brand reputation, and communication. These apps can help you build a strong company culture by analyzing and building on effective communication.

Employee App Polling Features

When looking for an employee management app, it's important to consider the ease of use and accessibility of polling and survey features. These tools can be instrumental in gathering feedback and insights from employees, improving communication, and fostering a positive work culture.

Creating polls and surveys should be a seamless process, accessible through the web interface of the app. The creator can add questions and response options, customize the poll or survey, and choose who to share it with. 

The app should provide multiple communication channels for sharing the poll, such as chat, push notifications, or the company feed. This ensures that employees, regardless of location or department, are promptly notified about the new poll or survey and can easily participate. 

Employee Survey Analytics

When searching for an employee app, don't forget to check if it lets you track and analyze poll and survey results in real-time. It sounds obvious but this nifty feature gives you insights into how engaged and happy your employees are. You can easily spot trends and spot areas where to improve. By using these features, you can create an environment of trust, teamwork, and continuous growth in your company.

Feature 8: Time Tracking

Time tracking is not required for all businesses, but it can be especially beneficial for those with a casual workforce, allowing them to accurately monitor employee hours and increase productivity. When choosing an employee app with time tracking capabilities, consider the following features: 


This feature allows employees to record when they start and finish work. Some apps may also have location tracking to verify that the employee is on-site.


Employees can view their timesheets as forms, add jobs they worked, and use job codes and breaks taken. This information can then be integrated with payroll applications.

Basic scheduling 

Some basic scheduling features may be included, such as viewing assigned shifts and requesting time off.

These features are typically sufficient for businesses with simple time tracking needs. 

Advanced time tracking

Some employee apps are designed to mainly focus on time tracking and have basic communication features like feedback polls. However, these apps might not include advanced employee engagement features that you might find in other employee apps. If you're specifically looking for an employee app that prioritizes time tracking, it's worth considering some of the following features.

Shift scheduling

Managers can use the app's web interface to create and assign shifts, taking into account factors such as availability and overtime rules.

Shift swapping

Employees can easily request to swap shifts through the app, with notifications sent to their shift manager.

Time-off requests

Employees should be able to request time off through the app, with managers having the ability to approve or deny the request.

Employee Availability

Employees should be able to update their availability through the app, which should be taken into account when scheduling shifts.

Overtime tracking

This is an advanced time management feature of an employee app but it should track employee hours and notify managers when an employee is approaching overtime.

Payroll integration

This is another useful feature to consider, as it can simplify the process of calculating employee pay by integrating with existing payroll systems.

3 Key Benefits of Employee Engagement Apps

Improved Communication

The use of an employee app can assist your company in remaining connected and on the same page. Managers and employees can share updates, feedback, and collaborate in real time when all communication is centralized on one platform, promoting better teamwork and increased productivity.

Enhanced efficiency

Consolidating task management, automating operations, and enabling in-app communication can increase efficiency and lead to better business outcomes. An app designed for employees brings all these features together in one platform, simplifying workflows and promoting productivity.

Increased engagement

Employee engagement and satisfaction can be increased by using an employee app with features such as chat, recognition, employee surveys, and social features. This results in lower employee turnover and a more positive workplace culture. 

Learn more about the benefits of employee management apps, in our previous article on the topic.

Why CentricMinds Employee App?

If you're considering using an employee management app for your business, it's important to choose an option that meets your specific needs. While there are numerous employee app options available, the CentricMinds Employee Management App offers several advantages for businesses of all sizes.

Firstly, CentricMinds Employee Engagement App offers a comprehensive set of features, including instant messaging, task management, a people directory, document access, forms and workflows, employee recognition, and surveys. These features make it easy to streamline communication and collaboration, automate operations, and track progress.

Secondly, the CentricMinds Employee App is designed to be user-friendly and customizable, making it easy to tailor the app to your specific needs and add your branding. The app's interface is intuitive and straightforward, making it easy for your team to adopt it quickly.

Finally, the CentricMinds Employee Management App is designed for scalability. The app is intended to grow with your company and meet your changing needs.

CentricMinds Employee App also stands out for its affordable pricing options that can fit the budget of all businesses.

In summary, if you're looking for an employee management app that is easy to use, customizable, and offers a range of features to help streamline communication, increase performance and engagement, and build a positive work culture, CentricMinds Employee App is an excellent choice. 

Check out the CentricMinds Employee Engagement App for more information and to get started.