13 Best Employee Engagement Software to Transform the Employee Experience
Employee engagement is suffering. Gallup's State of the Global Workplace research highlights that:
- 59% of employees are quiet quitting.
- 18% are loud quitting.
- 23% are thriving at work.
Let's look at that last statistic again: less than one-quarter of employees are engaged in their work.
To improve these numbers, companies can invest in different employee engagement tools to intrigue and motivate their workforce.
This guide digs into:
- the different types of employee engagement apps;
- what you might use them for;
- vendor examples to support your research.
👩💻 6 Types of employee engagement tools you can consider implementing in your company
Employee engagement tools can transform your company culture by injecting energy and enthusiasm into your teams. "Engagement" is a broad concept, so it follows that there are different categories of engagement tools HR professionals may use to handle different areas of the employee experience.
All-in-one employee engagement software
Instead of taking the pick-and-mix route to selecting a blend of employee engagement apps, a powerful all-in-one solution handles everything from a central location. Employees and admin users will log into a single interface to collaborate, give and receive feedback, track their performance cycles, and more.
Communication and collaboration
Communication and collaboration platforms revolutionize internal communication and eliminate workplace silos. This type of software enables seamless interaction between peers, departments, or between a direct report and their manager. The free flow of communication offers the following benefits:
- Promotes transparency.
- Facilitates information sharing.
- Fosters a culture of teamwork.
- Enhances productivity.
- Streamlines workflows.
- Drives business success.
Organizations that actively seek and gather employee feedback can use these gems of intel to enhance the employee experience and improve job satisfaction. Feedback survey tools collect transparent or anonymous input and use a variety of closed and open question types to:
- Gain a deeper understanding of their employees' needs
- Identify areas for improvement.
- Foster a positive and fulfilling work environment that promotes growth and success for all.
➡️ Learn more about how to measure employee engagement using the best tools in the market.
Regular feedback exchanges provide employees, peers, and managers are a valuable opportunity to connect, collaborate, and align on goals. These exchanges not only facilitate goal-setting but also create a platform to track performance metrics, identify areas of improvement, and provide performance evaluation tools. Fostering a culture of open communication and continuous feedback enhances employee development, boosts performance, and drives success.
➡️ Learn more about using performance management tools to create a continuous growth cycle.
Rewards and recognition
Employees love to receive recognition for their hard work and contributions to the organization—it's human nature. Formalizing a rewards and recognition system means that no one's efforts go unnoticed. When organizations create an environment where employees feel appreciated, valued, and inspired, they will go above and beyond in their professional endeavors, leading to:
- increased productivity;
- improved retention rates;
- overall organizational success.
➡️ Check out these top employee recognition ideas to keep spirits up in your organization.
Free employee engagement software
Employee engagement software isn't something confined to large corporations and global enterprises.
Startups and SMEs also need to keep their employees connected and engaged in their work, which can be challenging without a dedicated budget.
Luckily, many employee engagement tools offer free plans, which may suit your organization's size. We'll indicate these appropriately in the tool round-up below, including whether the free offer is part of a limited trial.
💻 Top 13 best employee engagement software tools
Let's dive into the specifics of each employee engagement app, including pricing, features, and user experience.
All-in-one employee engagement tool
Zavvy houses everything you need for employee engagement under one roof.
Our new feature, Zavvy AI, can accelerate all your people processes and make them 10x smarter.
Check out this sample of features you can access from one neat solution:
- Preboarding and onboarding: Increase new hire engagement by connecting onboarding buddies to ease acclimatization.
- Skills and development: Connect employees with relevant training resources to engage them in their career development.
- Internal and external training: Zavvy offers a rich training library with access to 1000s courses from 40+ providers. Microlearning options enable employees to commit to learning in the flow of work.
- Feedback and performance: Regular multi-source feedback ensures employees never remain stagnant.
- Engagement and analytics: Meetup roulettes forge meaningful workplace connections, while templates for employee engagement surveys and in-depth analytics provide valuable insights about the impact of your engagement efforts.
👥 User experience: Zavvy receives an impressive G2 user score of 4.8 out of 5, with positive reviews highlighting:
- "Huge help with our onboarding processes and making new hires feel welcome and ready to go on day one."
- "The AI functionality is still new to the platform, but I can see it really taking off as it continues to expand and grow."
- "Zavvy is helping us onboard people in a remote setting while also showcasing our inclusive and fun culture. It solves the problem of people feeling excluded, isolated, and lost within their first few days. You can automate a lot of things while still keeping it very fun and engaging."
One user remarks, "There is nothing to dislike about the platform. It is doing its job perfectly."
💰 Pricing: Zavvy starts at $4/4€ per employee/mo, with a minimum package of $300/300€.
Users benefit from modular pricing, so they only pay for the specific modules they need. Automated event scheduling is also available as an optional extra.
Employee engagement tools for collaboration and team-building
Slack is a collaboration and communication platform which makes workplace conversations easier and more efficient.
While it's not designed primarily as an engagement tool, it contains several features that will undoubtedly connect and motivate employees. These include:
- Real-time messaging: Slack's instant messaging capabilities allow employees to communicate in real time, enabling quick responses and fostering a sense of connectivity within the organization.
- Channels and group chats: The channel-based structure facilitates organized discussions among teams, departments, or project groups, which can be formal or informal, depending on your goals.
- Mentions, reactions, and custom emojis: Recognizing and praising colleagues by @ mentioning their name in a group chat is easy. Add reactions and custom emojis to add fun and personality to your discussions.
- Integrations: Slack integrates with other tools in your tech stack for a smooth flow of information
- Polls: Keep track of employee sentiment on various topics by running in-app surveys and polls.
👥 User experience: Slack achieves 4.5 out of 5 with G2's software community. Users love the real-time communication, with one review describing Slack as "a chat, video, audio, productivity, communication, and employee engagement tool all rolled into one simple yet brilliant ecosystem." Another user confirms that Slack has "definitely helped overall engagement since we feel a strong sense of connection with others in the company."
The downside is that some users report problems with Slack support, which could be problematic if you lack in-house technical capabilities.
- Free: $0
- Pro: From $6.67 per active user/mo
- Business+: From $12.50 per active user/mo
- Enterprise: Custom pricing available on request
Asana is a popular project management and task collaboration tool that can indirectly support employee engagement by fostering a more organized and collaborative work environment.
Here's how Asana can contribute to employee engagement:
- Collaborative workspaces: Team members can collaborate, discuss tasks, and share updates in Asana to develop a team environment encouraging employees to contribute ideas and insights.
- Recognition and appreciation: Asana's comment and like features allow team members to appreciate and recognize each other's efforts, contributing to a more engaged and motivated workforce.
- Celebrations: Asana's most engaging feature is the series of celebration creatures that sporadically fly across your screen when you complete a task. You might see a unicorn, narwhal, yeti, otter, or phoenix.
- Goal setting and progress tracking: Employees can track progress on tasks and projects.
- Task assignments and responsibilities: Ensure everyone knows what they are accountable for and what their teammates are working on.
👥 User experience: Asana achieves 4.3 out of 5 from G2's user review. One user had previously experienced low engagement with tools, but "Once we switched to Asana, the engagement increased, and the learning curve was very short." Another customer confirms what they like best about Asana: "The intuitive design, ease of setup, and engagement with users of their product."
Unfortunately, some reviews highlight that issues raised or features suggested by the Asana user base haven't been implemented, which causes frustration for some.
- Basic: From $0
- Premium: From $10.99 per member/mo
- Business: From $24.99 per member/mo
- Enterprise: Custom pricing available on request
Loom is a screen recording software that enables users to capture their desktop, camera, or both, which is a valuable feature when delivering feedback.
- Asynchronous communication: Provide detailed video feedback with facial cues and tone of voice to ensure you convey your message accurately.
- Multi-platform compatibility: Loom is available across Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android devices.
- Interactive features: Loom users can respond to videos by adding emojis, comments, or links to relevant documents.
- Share or embed videos: Add Loom videos to performance documentation, internal systems, or an email message using a shareable URL.
👥 User experience: Loom achieves a 4.7 out of 5 score from the G2 software community, including high scores from many users who rely on it for delivering feedback. One user says, "Its intuitive features, such as screen recording, real-time feedback, and seamless sharing capabilities, have truly revolutionized our approach to communication and collaboration."
While many workers prefer asynchronous to synchronous communication, others still like the opportunity to give and receive performance feedback in real time.
- Starter: Free plan available
- Business: From $12.50 per user/mo
- Enterprise: Custom pricing available
The Go Game
The Go Game is an innovative experiential learning platform with a unique and interactive experience designed to promote camaraderie among team members.
Here's how The Go Game supports employee engagement:
- Interactive team-building activities: The Go Game provides interactive team-building activities encouraging employees to work together towards a common goal.
- Problem-solving and creativity: The challenges and puzzles presented during The Go Game require problem-solving skills and creativity from participants. These activities enhance employees' critical thinking abilities and stimulate their creativity.
- Support for remote and hybrid teams: Virtual and hybrid options suit remote and distributed teams, ensuring that engagement activities are accessible to all employees.
👥 User experience: The Go Game achieves a G2 user community score of 4.4 out of 5, and reviews mention how it enables employees to connect and come out of their shells. One user writes, "We have a very shy team, and it can oftentimes be crickets when trying to encourage engagement. This gave everyone a voice yet still allowed some of the more extroverted activities to be cast to one extroverted teammate so that the shy ones didn't have to do anything too crazy."
Some users noticed a drop in momentum with certain games, so it would be worth spending time handpicking the activities that are most likely to resonate with your team before you begin.
💰 Pricing depends on the number of attendees:
- Virtual pricing is $399 for 10, $499 for 25, $900 for 50, and $1,600 for 100 attendees.
- In-person self-hosted pricing is $500 for 10, $750 for 25, $900 for 50, and $1,600 for 100 attendees.
- In-person on-screen host pricing is $900 for 10, $1,200 for 25, $1,600 for 50, and $2,000 for 100 attendees.
- In-person on-site hosted pricing is $2,280 for 10, $2,280 for 25, $3,040 for 50, and $4,200 for 100 attendees.
Employee engagement tools for surveys
Paperform is an online form builder you can use to create bespoke surveys and questionnaires to distribute to your entire workforce.
The app engages employees with the following features:
- Powerful analytics: Users can access survey insights in a user-friendly dashboard which allows you to visualize results and gather actionable insights to improve your business
- Customizable interface: Increase engagement with your survey by matching the design to your brand colors, fonts, or other visuals that ensure your employees know they're in the right place
- Mobile-friendly functionality: Respondents complete 30-40% of surveys on the move, which is why Paperform's guided mode surveys are ideal for mobile users
- Sharing and embedding features: Increase engagement with your employee surveys by generating a shareable URL to embed wherever your audience is, for example, emails, Slack channels, intranet, or similar.
- Survey design templates: Paperform offers a series of templates and checklists to make survey design a cinch
👥 User experience: Paperform achieves 4.5 out of 5 from G2's user review community. Customers love that the forms are easy to customize, even for those without technical know-how. One user mentions, "I'm not terribly tech-savvy, and I find it really simple to configure and design what I need. I've also found the support team excellent; quick to respond on chat and going above and beyond to help me do what I needed to do."
One of the main downsides to Paperform is that the free plan is only available for two weeks, and the premium plans are pretty expensive if you only need to use the platform occasionally.
💰 Pricing: Paperform offers a free 14-day trial of their premium plans, including:
- Essentials: From $20 per month
- Pro: From $40 per month
- Agency: From $135 per month
Typeform is another example of an online survey and form-building platform that increases employee engagement with a seamless user experience.
Here are some of the features you can expect when designing anything from employee satisfaction to 360-degree feedback surveys:
- Dynamic surveys: The dynamic questions in Typeform make it easier for users to complete surveys allowing them to skip irrelevant questions or add extra comments.
- Multi-platform compatibility: Survey forms are optimized for mobile, tablet, and desktop devices to ensure everyone can participate.
- Easy customization and branding: Typeform offers a range of themes and designs you can customize with your brand colors, logos, background images, or videos.
- Automated responses: Set up Automatic Responses to thank respondents for their time after they have completed the survey.
- Survey logic: Skip respondents to questions that are relevant to them based on their choices in previous answers.
👥 User experience: Typeform scores 4.5 out of 5 in G2's software community. The software increases both engagement with filling out surveys and team engagement. For example, one user highlights the main benefits of using Typeform as: "Internal surveys, team engagement, peer and team reviews." Others mention how the form design contributes to achieving great results for them: "One of the standout features that I appreciate is Typeform's conversational approach to survey design, where questions are presented one at a time, resulting in higher engagement and response rates."
Typeform offers a free plan, which puts it slightly ahead of Paperform; however, its premium plans are expensive unless you plan to use it regularly.
- Free: $0
- Basic: From $29 per month
- Plus: From $59 per month
- Business: From $99 per month
- Enterprise: Custom pricing available on request
Officevibe enables organizations to measure, analyze, and improve employee engagement levels.
It provides tools and features to gather employee feedback, identify areas for improvement, and foster a positive and productive work culture, with the following functionality:
- Pulse surveys: Automate pulse surveys weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly to keep on top of employee sentiment.
- Anonymous feedback: Gain rich, honest feedback by stripping identifiable information from your survey responses.
- Good vibes: Employee recognition is mixed into this survey tool, allowing employees to highlight each other's positive efforts.
- eNPS scores: Collect eNPS scores for each employee from the day they join you to stay abreast of your employer brand.
➡️ Learn how to improve your organization's eNPS score.
👥 User experience: Officevibe scores 4.3 out of 5 in G2's software review community. Of particular note is that companies can see the impact by collecting employee feedback and then acting on these valuable concerns or insights. One user notes, "Officevibe has helped us monitor our employee engagement but, most importantly, helped us make a workplace where people enjoy coming to work. It has also been great to track key company events and the positive effect these events have on engagement and mood."
However, some reviews report problems with customer support and a lack of question customization options.
- Free: $0
- Essential: From $3.50 per person/mo
- Pro: From $5 per person/mo
➡️ Check out this detailed analysis of Officevibe and potential alternatives.
Employee engagement solutions for feedback and performance management
Small Improvements is a platform with performance feedback functionality to bring 1:1 meeting notes, performance objectives, goals, and more together in one place.
The platform provides:
- Configurable performance review settings: Create your choice of formal reviews or informal check-ins to support your specific feedback cycles
- Performance metrics: Discover who has completed their reviews vs. who has yet to get started
- 360-degree feedback: Collect feedback from a variety of sources
👥 User experience: Small Improvements achieves 4.1 out of 5 in G2's user community, a little lower than other employee engagement platforms on this list, based on 31 reviews. Some companies state it's a better fit for organizations with fewer than 100 employees. Others mention that the simple interface may appeal to some but lacks functionality for companies with more complex needs. "From an HR perspective, sometimes you want more functionality like linking with your HRIS, more complex message and feedback process, more streamlined tools to flag certain comments, questions or things you may not see unless they read each and every review."
- Performance starter pack: $5 per user/mo
- Feedback and performance suite: $7 per user/mo
- Engagement and insights such as pulse surveys are available as an add-on for $2 per user/mo
Culture Amp offers a performance management system and engagement platform to enable organizations to capture employee feedback, surveys, 1:1 meetings, and other sources.
It offers the following features:
- Goal tracking: Progress updates allow managers and employees to stay aligned
- Calibrations: Ensure all performance reviews are fair and equitable
- Skills coach: Micro-learning is available to drive new behaviors and form healthy performance habits
- Integrations: Connects with other tools in your HR tech stack
👥 User experience: Culture Amp receives a 4.6 out of 5 from the G2 user community, with customers leaning on it for a range of use cases, including development cycles, engagement, and 1:1s. Suggestions from the user community include requests for search bars in the Reviews>Admin>Performance Review Cycle area to filter for previous performance reviews.
Culture Amp offers the Engage, Perform, and Develop plans but doesn't publish pricing information on its site.
➡️ Is Culture Amp the right tool for you? Check out our analysis of CultureAmp features and some alternative solutions.
Employee engagement tools for rewards and recognition
Nectar is a rewards and recognition program that encourages praise and collaboration in the flow of work via the in-built Nectar feed.
Its main features include:
- Challenges: Design engaging challenges to drive healthy behaviors and outcomes
- Rewards: Redeem Nectar points for Amazon products, company swag, charity donations, gift cards, or custom rewards
- Recognition: Give praise and shoutouts to employees who exhibit company values
- Milestones: Plug anniversaries, cultural celebrations, birthdays, and more into Nectar and automate points and recognition when the time comes
👥 User experience: Nectar achieves 4.7 out of 5 from G2's user community. Users mention the engagement results they've achieved, such as "We have had a ton of engagement and interaction out of the gate. It really took our rewards & recognition program to the next level," while another highlights what they love the most about Nectar: "You can celebrate your team's successes, even the little ones. It's excellent for company engagement, not to mention it gives me one more reason to enjoy my job even more."
Like other rewards-based platforms, some users highlight their concerns that the same faces receive the rewards every time.
Nectar offers a simple pricing plan with two tiers, as detailed below. Volume discounts are available on request:
- Standard: From $2.75 per user/mo
- Plus: From $4 per user/mo
Bonusly is a points-based system that encourages employees to recognize and acknowledge each other's achievements.
Its features include:
- Peer-to-peer recognition: This 360-degree feature allows peers to express their appreciation to each other.
- Rewards: Incentivize your employees using digital gift cards, cash-out options, custom bonuses, donations, company swag, and more.
- Automated milestones: Automate celebrations for key dates like birthdays, work anniversaries, and more.
- Incentive programs: Drive efficiency across your teams by creating company-wide initiatives to encourage proactive participation.
- Employee analytics: Gain immediate visibility into participation trends, team connections, recognition frequency, and more.
👥 User experience: Bonusly is one of the market's most well-known rewards and recognition platforms, achieving a 4.8 score out of 5, according to G2 users. One recent review explains, "I love how the company is encouraged to give teammates and peer shoutouts for a job well done, lending a helping hand, or just a birthday wish. Giving this public recognition goes a long way to build team culture, camaraderie, and positivity."
However, other reviews suggest Bonusly contributes to a toxic company culture, with colleagues giving to the same people in their department every month or creating a negatively competitive environment.
- Free trial: From $0
- Core: From $2.70 per user/month
- Pro: From $4.50 per user/month
- Custom pricing is available for mid-size to large organizations
Fond is an employee engagement program that focuses on recognition and performance management.
Here's what Fond offers:
- Perks: Fond's perks program gives employees access to discounts on numerous products and services relating to fitness, travel, entertainment, and more.
- Rewards: Employees send points to each other as recognition for significant accomplishments, then redeem these points on company-branded swag, charity donations, gift cards, and more.
- Multi-language support: Essential for your global workforce.
👥 User experience: Fond scores 4.7 out of 5 on G2, with many users describing the value the platform brings. One user mentions, "Within my organization, we felt the need to provide a more employee-centric rewards and recognition program. I believe that Fond is a great solution to help maximize employee engagement and retention."
There are very few one-star reviews of this platform, and those that do exist are 3+ years old, suggesting they may no longer be relevant.
💰 Pricing: Fond promises a "straightforward and transparent pricing model" using "an annual subscription fee with no hidden costs, markups, or billing surprises." However, the SaaS platform doesn't provide specific pricing information on its pricing page.
🎖️ What makes good employee engagement software?
No two employee engagement platforms are created equal.
But some common elements exist in quality software, including the following.
A positive user experience (UX) relies on a well-designed user interface (UI) which must be intuitive, easy to navigate, and aesthetically pleasing. Some platforms will allow interface customization so you can incorporate your colors, fonts, and logos to make the tool your own.
In-built reporting provides insights to understand the effectiveness of your employee engagement programs. A good employee engagement software should include measures to track interaction with the platform, trends in data, and generate reports in an easy-to-understand format.
Quality employee engagement tools should work in harmony with existing tools in your tech stack, which may include typical business applications such as Slack, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Gmail, and more.
Your tool's functionality will depend on the bells and whistles it offers. These will vary significantly depending on the type of engagement tool you end up with but may include different views, buttons, forms, widgets, gamification, notifications, and more.
Security protocols should be in place to ensure data stored on the platform remains confidential. Tools with secure storage and encryption of user information provide robust security measures for access control. Your chosen tool should also include features to comply with GDPR and other legal requirements related to employee engagement software.
Today's employees are on-the-go and access engagement platforms from a wide range of devices, including desktop computers, tablets, and smartphones. Tools that offer responsive design for a seamless user experience across all devices and syncing ensure your data is always up-to-date regardless of the device used.
Good customer support is essential, especially if you are an SMB with limited technical resources. Quality software should provide comprehensive documentation with best practices and tutorials for setup and use and email, phone, or chat support. For global organizations, multilingual support is a must. Look for tools with multi-language support to ensure consistent messaging and user experience regardless of spoken language.
🏆 What are the benefits of an employee engagement platform?
Employee engagement software clearly signals that your business invests in its people.
But if you need a fleshed-out business case for embracing this type of technology, here are some benefits you can expect as part of your ROI.
➡️ Check out even more top drivers of employee engagement in our detailed guide.
➡️ Drive engagement and growth with Zavvy
Zavvy offers an entire suite to engage employees throughout their entire journey with your organization. Check out the following features which you and your employees are sure to enjoy:
- 🌱 Employee development: Create an overall development framework, define cycle duration, notification channels, and career progression paths
- 💪 Learning experience: Keep your employees engaged in their professional development by providing access to a library of world-class training courses
- 🤩 Employee engagement: Gain strategic people insights by collecting the data that matters, then acting on it
- 👯 Connection programs: Auto-connect your employees for meaningful conversations, walking meetings, casual meetups, and more
Ready to supercharge employee engagement in your organization?
📅 Take Zavvy for a spin by booking a free demo today.
What is an employee engagement platform?
An employee engagement platform helps organizations foster employee engagement to increase job satisfaction and performance. It makes it easier to engage employees through various channels, such as surveys, recognition programs, instant messaging, and more. Employee engagement platforms can also provide insights into performance which HR professionals may use to create targeted strategies to boost employee morale.
What is employee engagement software?
Employee engagement software is another way of saying employee engagement platform. It refers to a single app or suite of tools designed to connect employees with company culture and increase their satisfaction. Engagement software encompasses multiple areas of the employee experience, including feedback, L&D, surveys, rewards and recognition, and more.
What is the main purpose of employee engagement tools?
The main purpose of employee engagement tools is to foster a better connection between the organization and its employees. They help companies measure employee satisfaction and performance, so leaders can identify areas where they need improvement. Additionally, these tools provide a platform for rewarding employees with recognition or rewards when they have achieved goals or gone above and beyond expectations.