The power to do more – Dell employee engagement

Arooj    May 27, 2018

Who are they?

Dell is a multinational computer technology company based in Texas, United States. It is known for developing, selling, repairing, and supporting computers and related products and services. It started off as a pure hardware vendor but with acquisition of Perot System in 2009, the company ventured into IT services market. Since then it has been expanding its portfolio to include not only computers but also delivering complete solutions for enterprise customers.

Working for DELL

The company employs more than 103,000 individuals worldwide and was listed at number 51 in Fortune 500 list of the companies until 2014.

DELL operates in over 180 different countries around the world. Very few companies have the resources available to them that we have.

Jeremy Burton, Chief Marketing Officer

Sparking new ideas

Dell approached the idea of employee engagement through an innovative prism, much like killing two birds with one stone. The company launched a social media platform known as EmployeeStorm to not only engage with their employees and foster discussions among them but also collect innovative business ideas.

This initiative grew out of a similar project, named IdeaStorm, that Dell employed externally to cull ideas from its customers. This platform not only collects ideas but also allows other users to comment and vote on those ideas as well, highlighting the propositions worth implementing.

We don’t want employees submitting ideas externally. We want to keep those internal.

Vida Killian, Manager of IdeasStorm platform

Ideas obtained through EmployeeStorm are segregated according to the subject and then are directed towards relevant departments for further processing.

It’s easier to go internal before you go external. There’s less fear, and also you are engraining your culture with the culture of social media and Web 2.0 and where it’s taking us and how important it is to listen. And that’s why we came out with EmployeeStorm as quickly as we did.

Vida Killian, Manager of IdeasStorm platform

Success achieved on EmployeeStorm so far includes;

  • 3,000+ ideas generated by Dell employees through the EmployeeStorm system within the first 60 days of its launch. Those ideas received more than 48,000 combined votes.
  • 45% of Dell employees participate in discussions taking place on EmployeeStorm on any given day.
  • 10,000+ ideas have been generated on Ideastorm so far out of which 200 have been implemented already.

Employee Advocacy

2018 could be the year of employee advocacy on social media. New media has revolutionized the way people interact with each other and collect information. A single post by an employee can offer a sneak peek into company’s culture .

According to a recent research, the company branded messages reached 561% further when shared by the employees rather than traditional branded channels(3). Dell is one of the companies that use social media for employment branding and talent recruitment. With rise of social media, they quickly realized that their employment branding has to be less about what the company says about itself and more of what its employees have to say about their work experience.

As a result they produced a series of unscripted videos portraying their employees speaking freely about their experiences of life at Dell.

Connected Workplace

Technology has changed the way we work and deliver our objectives. Dell offered new ways to work for its employees enabling eligible team members to choose the style that best fulfills their needs, both in their jobs and personal life. Connected workplace is a platform that many Dell employees use to stay connected and work from remote places.

Strong ideas come from a well-connected team. Give your employees the tech they need to easily collaborate from anywhere.


Traditional ways

Considering that present workforce consists of three generations, traditional ways of employee engagement cannot be overruled entirely. From innovating their workplace to encouraging employee associations to prosper in the organization, Dell seems to be doing pretty well. They understand that employee resource groups like diversity and affinity groups, Asians in action, black networking alliance, Faith, Planet, Pride and many more like these are important for building a greater level of involvement.

Innovative workplace

Dell realizes the importance of an innovative workspace that can allow their employees to work safely and comfortably. They are now venturing into designing an ultramodern workspace that can increase their team members productivity and inspire creativity.

Lessons for Others

Dell is taking innovative steps towards enhancing its employee engagement endeavors. A number of per-requisites that are important to keep in mind if a company wants to follow their foot steps,

  1. Company culture: Make sure that the corporate mindset of the company and higher management supports such programs.
  2. Resource allocation: Internal communications is an area that requires allocation of resources, time, and talent to bring it to fruition.
  3. Be prepared: Organizations should be prepared to handle and process the volume of participation that can result from such initiatives. Having a back end team to respond and process the information received is as crucial as taking the first step.
  4. Regional adaptability: In today’s globalized world, workplaces are connected across different countries. It is important that organization’s employee engagement schemes are adapted to the region and the countries in which these initiatives are meant to be implemented.

Industry: Computer Technology Company
Name of Organization Contact: Michael S. Dell, CEO

Authored by: Arooj Prem

If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site, please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Program Director, Social Media for Business Performance.


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  2. South, Chris. (2014, July 2). How Dell Doubled Social Hires Using Employee Branding.[Web log post] Retrieved May 27, 2018 from
  3. Durfy, Lauren. (2018, February 7). Social Advocacy in the Workplace. [Online Research paper] Retrieved May 27, 2018 from
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