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If someone told you it was possible to improve employee retention by 20% and accelerate onboarding by 50% with little effort, would you be intrigued?

These are just two impressive statistics to come from a recent Forrester report examining the impacts of Microsoft Viva on employee experience and business outcomes.

The report found that businesses which use the employee experience platform achieve an average 327% return on investment, in addition to a range of unquantifiable benefits such as enhanced:

  • employee satisfaction and wellbeing
  • security and compliance
  • analytics and insights

While these results may come from full utilisation of the Viva platform, many business owners are unaware that they already have access to it and could start benefiting from Viva without paying a single cent.  

Know what you have and how to leverage it

Although more in-depth features of Microsoft Viva (such as Viva Topics and Viva Goals) are available to purchase as add-ons, foundational features such as Viva Connections and Viva Engage are already unlocked as part of most Microsoft 365 subscriptions.

If you are yet to explore the Viva features that are already available to your business, there’s never been a better time to start.

Amid skills shortages, work backlogs and diminishing employee engagement following a difficult few years, Microsoft Viva is quickly proving to be an exciting conduit between the ways of old and new hybrid work environments. It bridges the human connection, collaboration and knowledge sharing aspects of face-to-face interaction with remote working models that can sometimes place employees at risk of disengagement and demotivation.

The platform does this through a variety of tools that essentially support an employee from hire to retire. In following their journey, it promotes a strong sense of connection and empowers relationship building regardless of whether the person works in the office all of the time, some of the time, or not at all.

Widespread cultural change is achieved by boosting employee wellbeing at an individual level which, much like a domino effect, permeates the organisation and leads to a shift in workplace morale all round.  

These may seem like bold claims, but we’ve seen our customers achieve similar results to those shared in the Forrester report. When the platform is configured and rolled out according to best practice, and becomes ingrained in everyday operations, benefit realisation is usually swift and strong. Customers report greater engagement and collaboration, plus improved knowledge retention and other very beneficial outcomes across the business.  

This is only the beginning

Another reason why it’s useful for business leaders to explore Microsoft Viva now is that its capability is evolving at a rapid rate.

In laying the foundations today, businesses will be well-placed to take advantage of powerful emerging features – such as the next evolution of generative artificial intelligence (AI).

As we’ve seen with ChatGPT and other generative AI, the potential to accelerate everything from research to content production is enormous and exciting. When combined with automation for manual and repetitive processes that have long held human minds back from discovering their full potential, the entire concept of productivity could completely shift in the very near future.

The ability to exploit these emerging capabilities in real time will give your business a unique competitive advantage. One that is highly focussed on innovation and exceptional customer experiences, and is underpinned by operations that are both ultra efficient and profitable.

Of course, this is only possible if the foundations are there to support this level of agility and empower us to take full advantage of what comes next.

For example, Microsoft recently announced the addition of CoPilot to Viva which employs an advanced iteration of ChatGPT. Combined with Microsoft graph data and 365 apps, the change is set to revolutionise workplace communication and planning. This change will be made available to Viva users later in the year, and follows the recent integration of several other nifty tools – such as Glint (a people success platform) and Pulse (an advanced feedback tool) – which have further served to bolster workplace productivity and engagement for Viva users.

Getting started with Viva

The beauty of getting started with Microsoft Viva is that you can choose to use all Viva apps together, or roll them out one at a time as part of a longer term change management program.

Viva Connections is an ideal place to begin your Viva journey, as it’s almost certainly part of your existing Microsoft 365 licence. It’s also the hub of other Viva apps, which you can opt to add at a pace that suits your business.

In rolling out Viva Connections, you are giving employees a centralised place to:

  • see news and information that’s relevant to them
  • quickly find resources or apps they need to do their work
  • share thoughts and ideas with their peers

If you’re unsure where to start, Antares has extensive experience working with businesses to unlock the power of Microsoft Viva.

As a Microsoft Solutions partner, we know how to set up Viva Connections and other Viva apps in line with best practice, and guide you on rolling it out to users in a way that will maximise adoption and drive a positive user experience.

To learn more about Microsoft Viva or to get started with Viva Connections, simply contact us.