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How to Keep Your Global Workforce Engaged

April 4, 2017

typingIf you are a multinational company with a global workforce, translating HR documents like employee handbooks and codes of conduct is a must. Documents related to the onboarding process should be translated professionally to ensure they will be clearly understood by overseas employees. In fact, many countries legally require that important HR communications be translated into the local language of employees.

But translating onboarding and training documents is only the beginning. Building a cohesive global workforce requires reaching out and engaging employees wherever they are located, throughout their employment. Translating internal communications is a critical part of that process.

What to translate

Internal communications can include letters from the CEO, newsletters, social media and any other information that keeps employees up-to-date and informed on what is happening at the company. These documents help employees understand the company’s mission, core values and culture. If you are sending internal communications to your global employees in English only, it’s likely they won’t get the message. Even if they speak English, they are far more likely to read and understand communications in their native language.

Employee engagement

Professionally translating newsletters, corporate videos and other internal materials into local languages will help overseas employees feel valued within your organization, and hence engaged. High employee engagement not only helps improve performance – it’s also good for the bottom line. A Gallup study found that companies with high employee engagement levels have 3.9 times the earnings per share (EPS) growth rate compared to those in the same industry with lower levels of employee engagement.

Internal marketing & customer satisfaction

Internal marketing focuses on motivating employees to provide great customer service and stay “on-message” with the company’s sales and marketing efforts. It recognizes that employees play a critical role in the client retention process, because customer satisfaction is based on the entire experience of interacting with a company, not just with its sales and customer service teams. Even staff who don’t interact directly with customers help ensure customer satisfaction, including overseas employees.

Global brand management

Another benefit related to internal marketing is global branding. If you want customers to value you, maintaining a strong brand is critical. Overseas employees can make great brand ambassadors – if they know the brand. You can improve their brand awareness by translating and sharing social media, marketing and sales collateral, taglines, and other branded content. Your global employees can help generate buzz and serve as a credible source for information about your company, especially in target markets where customers may be less familiar with your products and services.

Doing it right is worth the cost

Keeping a diverse workforce engaged is no easy task, especially if you are operating in multiple global locations. Translating internal communication is critical to this effort – but it has to be done right. Make sure that all communications and HR documents are professionally translated and localized. Your global employees will appreciate it, and the return on investment will make it well worth the cost.