A comprehensive review of the best employee engagement software

Best employee engagement software - two women working together on laptop computer
Numerous studies show that high employee engagement drives organizational success, improving key outcomes such as profitability, productivity and employee retention. Disengaged employees have the opposite effect. 

According to a recent McKinsey & Company study, disengaged employees cost the average mid-range S&P 500 company $228 million to $355 million per year in lost productivity alone.

To address that financial bleed and raise employee engagement, organizations are turning to employee engagement software — specialized tools designed to measure and improve employee satisfaction, communication and engagement.

If you’re in search of the best employee engagement software, this article offers a comprehensive view of the top options on the market.

Table of contents: Comprehensive review of the best employee engagement software

What is employee engagement software?

Employee engagement software is a broad category of software designed to help organizations measure, analyze and improve employee engagement. Features can include employee surveys, feedback mechanisms, recognition and rewards programs, performance tracking, and communication channels.

More extensive platforms can offer business leaders, managers and HR professionals the necessary tools and employee experience insights to tackle negative employee engagement feedback effectively. This is achieved through simplifying tasks and collaboration, fostering a positive work culture, and motivating employees to genuinely invest in the company, its vision, and its work.

Employee engagement software - two women collaborating

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Understanding employee engagement software

The first step in choosing an employee engagement software solution is to get an overview of the options available in the market. The best choice for your organization depends largely on its size and the goals you hope to achieve.

Small businesses with few departments may simply want a direct way to survey, real-time feedback to focus on improving employee retention. Enterprise organizations might be ready for an employee experience platform that analyzes employee sentiment to deliver actionable insights to help them maintain a strong workplace culture, build employee morale, and improve internal communications for thousands of employees across hundreds of departments around the world. Those are two very different needs.

The different types of employee engagement software are designed to serve different needs for different kinds of organizations.

SaaS employee engagement software

SaaS employee engagement software is a cloud-based software-as-a-service solution designed simply to enhance employee engagement within an organization. It provides tools and features that can help organizations communicate, collaborate and motivate their employees with the ultimate goal of increasing productivity, job satisfaction and overall organizational success.

Other employee experience tools related to employee engagement software

Employee recognition software — this kind of software is designed to manage employee recognition programs that help employees feel recognized and appreciated, thereby boosting motivation levels.

Corporate wellness software — these specialized software options help HR leaders manage employee wellness programs to help their workforce stay healthy, decrease stress, and generally feel better in both their work and personal lives.

Financial wellness software — this kind of software is focused on helping employees maintain the health of their personal finances, decreasing financial stress and helping them plan ahead for retirement.

HR services software — this kind of software can improve employee engagement by helping employees choose and manage their own HR options, including home office budgets, vacation time, paternity leave and more.

Employee experience (EX) software — comprehensive employee experience software offers all this and more. The best EX software gives larger mid-size and enterprise organizations a solution that offers everything in one place, while integrating with their current tech stack and leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) across the platform to help them manage large workforces.

AI virtual assistants — what happens when you connect an AI virtual assistant to your internal systems? A 90% reduction in administrative tasks and high-repeat requests. Integrated virtual assistants help improve the employee experience dramatically by letting your workforce perform a wide range of routine work tasks without juggling multiple logins and context switching.

Employee engagement software reviews

When considering employee engagement software, remember to take into account what that evaluated software was designed to do. For example, a small business might not care about a low rating by an enterprise organization on software that wasn’t designed to manage a workforce of thousands. However, enterprise organizations should take equal care to make sure that software ranks well among the enterprise organizations that already use it.

Employee engagement software comparisons

Another thing to remember when shopping for employee engagement software is to make sure you’re considering all of your current needs. Powerful options like a EX software with purpose-built AI can solve multiple problems at once, making the ROI far more favorable than buying different SaaS options to solve different problems and trying to integrate them all together.

If you represent an enterprise organization with many different needs, be sure to compare your software options across all of those needs, not just employee engagement.

The more you investigate, the more impressed you’re likely to be with the potential ROI of an AI-powered employee experience platform with a modern intranet as its linchpin.

Discover how AI is revolutionizing EX

Employee engagement software pros and cons

Keep the following pros and cons in mind as you consider today’s employee engagement software solutions.


  • Increased productivity and efficiency: Employee engagement software can help streamline processes, automate tasks and improve collaboration.
  • Enhanced communication: Advanced versions of these software tools will work across multiple channels, including real-time messaging, video conferencing and mobile notifications.
  • Improved employee satisfaction: Listening to and acting on employee feedback can make your workforce feel valued, improving the employee experience.
  • Data-driven insights: Comprehensive EX platforms offer AI-powered analytics and reporting, providing HR and management with valuable insights into employee performance, feedback and engagement levels.


  • Cost of implementation and training: Make sure you choose an option that is easy to implement, even for enterprise organizations.
  • Tech stack bloat: Choose an option that can either replace other software in your tech stack, integrate with existing favorites easily, or (ideally) both. Adding stand-alone software tends to lead to tech stack bloat.
  • Resistance to change: Be sure to choose an option that’s easy to use without training.
The key to wide adoption of employee engagement software is ease of use.

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Employee engagement software - woman using smartphone

Current trends in employee engagement software

Enterprise organizations in particular should consider these current trends and developments in employee engagement software.

Remote work support — Employee engagement software needs to accommodate nuanced remote and frontline needs, especially for enterprise organizations.

Natural language processing (NLP) — This is the ability of computer systems to process and analyze natural human language. Employees can make requests and provide feedback in their own words, and the system will understand and process what they say in real time, across dozens of different languages.

Predictive analytics — Traditionally, data analytics looked at historical data to see trends in the past. Today, AI-powered systems analyze real-time employee engagement data to offer actionable insights that leaders can use to effect meaningful change.

Integrations — Modern employee engagement software needs to integrate with existing corporate tech stacks for maximum efficiency and effectiveness.

Mobile apps — Employee engagement software needs to meet employees where they are, letting them use technology they’re already comfortable with.

A mobile app is vital for widespread adoption of the software across your workforce.

Key features of employee engagement software

As you’re comparing different employee engagement software options, be sure to dig into the details when it comes to the following:

Employee survey channels — Surveys are not all the same. Does the software offer instant polls across multiple platforms? Can pulse surveys be sent to employee phones through push notifications? What about offering deep employee engagement surveys with anonymous feedback? To get the best ROI from your employee engagement software, be sure it can offer all the survey options you need.

Reporting capabilities — How much reporting detail can you expect from the software? Does it offer AI-powered analytics to surface employee sentiment that traditional data analysis could easily miss? Data is only worth as much as the insights you can glean from it, so be sure your solution will serve up real answers, not just columns of data.

Employee engagement solutions — Does the software include the tools you need to implement real change? Or will it only tell you what you need to do, without helping you do it? Employee engagement is a two-pronged process — learn what employees need, and then take action. This includes employee recognition programs, improved communication and collaboration, better onboarding, streamlined workflows and more.

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Top employee engagement software options: A comparative review

1. Employee experience software

Enterprise organizations and larger mid-sized businesses will want to consider comprehensive employee experience platforms like Simpplr. These robust platforms improve employee engagement by giving employees a centralized hub to connect, feel heard, and align on business goals. Advanced personalization and targeting capabilities ensure the right information reaches the right employees at the right time.

The right employee experience platform makes the enterprise work experience friendly, inviting and collaborative at scale.

Simpplr includes tools designed specifically for employee engagement surveys, polls and other feedback, as well as AI-powered predictive analytics that provide actionable insights and real-time feedback about employee sentiments and trends.


  • Includes a broad range of tools and features that are specific to employee engagement.
  • Boosts employee engagement by improving the employee experience, making workflows, communication and collaboration more efficient and effective.
  • Designed to work seamlessly at scale, even for the largest enterprise organizations.
  • Offers significant ROI for large organizations by avoiding the tremendous cost in both time and money of building and maintaining a custom solution.
  • Simpplr in particular ranks well above the industry average on all three of G2’s primary user ratings: Ease of Setup, Ease of Use, and Quality of Support.


  • Comprehensive EX platforms may offer more than smaller businesses need.
  • The ROI might not be as significant for small businesses as it is for larger organizations and enterprise companies.

Case studies for improving employee engagement with a modern intranet platform

NEI Investments achieves world-class employee retention with Simpplr

Employee engagement software - NEI case study

NEI Investments is a revolutionary mutual fund company that had expanded its reach, spreading its presence across Canada with multiple office locations and a widespread remote workforce. Traditional methods of communication like email and shared network drives were no longer effective in facilitating collaboration and information sharing.

According to NEI, the company chose the Simpplr platform as its intranet and employee engagement software because it had all the necessary capabilities and was easy to deploy. The use of the software has fostered a greater sense of transparency and collaboration across locations and departments, leading to dramatically increased employee engagement and overall satisfaction scores.

Read the full case study

Bay Federal Credit Union creates an engaging and collaborative employee intranet

Employee engagement software - Bay Federal Credit Union case study

Bay Federal Credit Union is a large financial institution serving over 80,000 members and 2,400 local businesses in California. With its commitment to serving the community, Bay Federal offers a range of products and services including savings, checking, loans, mortgages and credit cards.

When the company came up against the limitations of its previous intranet platform, the organization chose Simpplr as its new intranet and employee engagement software. Simpplr was chosen as the best solution due to its ease of use for end users and admins, as well as its sleek UI and robust search capabilities. Simpplr’s Auto-Governance Engine™ has played a crucial role in keeping information up to date and helping the company achieve a 100% intranet adoption rate.

Read the full case study

AppDynamics retains company culture despite high growth

Employee engagement software - Appdynamics

AppDynamics is a leading provider of application performance management and IT operations software. The company has received recognition for being one of the best places to work in both the US and UK, thanks to its strong emphasis on fostering a positive company culture through effective internal communications. As one of the fastest-growing companies in the US, AppDynamics chose Simpplr to maintain its high standards for employee engagement.

The company chose Simpplr as its intranet and employee engagement software with a specific emphasis on easily creating and managing intranet content. The organization used storytelling techniques to create engaging content and promote intranet awareness, achieving a six-week launch with 0% dependency on IT.

Read the full case study

2. AI virtual assistant as employee engagement software

Enterprise organizations and larger mid-sized businesses will also want to consider adding an AI virtual assistant as part of their employee engagement software implementation. Simpplr’s AI Assistant improves employee engagement with automated workflows that reduce admin tasks by 90%.

Employees can chat with the AI in more than 133 languages, even on their mobile phones, asking it to do anything from uploading work expenses to applying for paternity leave without ever opening an app.


  • Organizations can see an immediate return on employee experience.
  • Virtual Assistant can thread together all of a company’s enterprise apps, including bots, into a single conversational experience, improving employee engagement and adoption.
  • Improves employee engagement by delivering a personalized experience in each moment, offering relevant responses that even take into account the employee’s location, department and more.
  • Respects existing user permissions across a global, multilingual workforce.
  • Rapid deployment without the need for question/answer mapping, variation mapping/management, or system training.


  • Smaller organizations with simple workflows may not benefit from the same ROI as larger companies.

3. Employee engagement SaaS options for small business

For small businesses, you’ll want to compare reviews and ratings of single-solution SaaS employee engagement software options like Lattice, Bonusly and Jotform. These kinds of solutions are designed for smaller companies that aren’t looking for an integrated platform that can scale for an enterprise-level workforce.


  • These solutions tend to cost less, designed to manage employee engagement for small businesses at a price point they can afford.
  • If you don’t need a broad range of employee engagement tools for a massive workforce, a more targeted solution might be the best fit.


  • These solutions are usually too limited in terms of employee engagement tools and functionality for enterprise-level organizations.
  • Targeted SaaS options that are designed for small businesses usually can’t scale to meet the needs of an enterprise-level workforce.

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A deeper dive into enterprise employee engagement software

Enterprise-level organizations face unique challenges in maintaining and improving employee engagement. When it comes to employee engagement software, their needs stretch far beyond those of smaller organizations.

Large organizations can struggle to help a widely distributed workforce feel directly connected to the organization, its leadership and its vision.

Simpplr helps leaders and employees connect and inspire each other, building a strong sense of community even across a global organization that spans multiple countries and languages.

Specialized needs of enterprise-level businesses

Building employee engagement is a multi-faceted problem. Enterprise organizations need unified employee engagement software that can deliver everything at once — surveys, polls, anonymous feedback, data analysis, real-time employee insights and more. All in a natural, easy experience that employees will want to use.

Most importantly, employees need to be able to access that experience whenever and wherever they need it, in the office or on the road, from their desktop computer to their phone.

Your employees need to stay connected to the tools they need everywhere, no matter where they are or what time zone they’re in.

A comprehensive employee experience platform like Simpplr, combined with AI Assistant, addresses all these challenges and more, putting employee engagement at the center of the employee experience 24/7/365.

Implementation challenges and solutions for enterprise software

With a distributed workforce of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of employees, enterprise software needs to offer seamless implementation, integrating easily with all the major players in an enterprise tech stack.

It also needs to be so easy to use that employees won’t need special training. The more training new software requires from employees, the smaller the percentage of the workforce that will adopt it and use it regularly. By adding natural-language AI across an employee experience platform, especially one with dozens of built-in integrations, enterprise organizations can overcome this hurdle with a high rate of adoption for a work experience that’s second to none.

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Choosing the right employee engagement software for your organization

For enterprise organizations, the ROI for an employee experience software solution with an AI virtual assistant begins with employee engagement. When you consider the value of an engaged workforce and being able to attract and retain top talent, an AI-powered EX platform becomes a clear strategic advantage.

Request a demo to see how Simpplr can boost employee engagement within your organization.

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