It’s no secret that employee engagement is paramount to the success of any business. If employees are invested in their jobs, they are likely to do better work that meets or exceeds the organization’s expectations.
But what is employee engagement? What structures can you incorporate into your company to create the conditions where employees can thrive? This article addresses these questions and provides tips on how to increase employee engagement.
What is Employee Engagement, and Why is it Important?
As organizations seek to measure and improve employee engagement, experts have strongly debated the precise definition of employee engagement and the proper method of measuring it. There is a consensus that employee engagement is an employee state of mind, influenced by the employee’s motivation in what they are doing on the job. Employee engagement is dependent upon the specific personality of each individual and the conditions of each workplace, which are constantly changing.
Research clearly shows why every company should strive to create a better working environment. An engaged workforce will see higher productivity and better retention than their competitors. This leads to better customer service, lower costs for hiring and training new employees, and overall, higher profits.
What Are the Drivers of Employee Engagement?
Before you engage your workforce, you must understand what drives employee engagement. There are four primary drivers of employee engagement: how an employee perceives their job, their manager, their coworkers, and the organization as an employer.
Everyone wants an environment that helps them realize the purpose and meaning of what they’re doing. Organizations also need to ensure an effective strategy for developing high-potential employees to manage tasks more confidently and effectively.
Among all the four drivers, the manager plays the biggest role. An effective manager or supervisor should take an interest in each employee while also helping them develop professionally. Lastly, ongoing dialogue between employers and employees is essential to set and meet expectations early.
How to Gather Employee Engagement Data
Knowing how each employee perceives the four drivers of engagement is a great way to understand how you can improve the workplace and therefore, engagement at work. One way to do this is by gathering data through employee surveys, especially through an external partner like Work Institute.
Your study should include complex questions requiring an employee to give detailed feedback. Employee engagement survey questions should be based on factors such as:
- Perceptions of the core drivers
- Willingness to stay
- Barriers to doing their best work
- Compliance or ethical concerns in the workplace
It is recommended that these studies be conducted annually, at least, to obtain valuable insights and trends. Once you collect this data, you can get a clear picture of what your company should do to improve employee morale.
Employee Engagement Strategies for an Improved Workplace
Now that we have already answered the question of what is employee engagement, how can you achieve it in your organization? Here are strategies you can try.
Adopt a Bottom-Up Approach
To get employees on board, you must first understand where they’re coming from, what they want, and how they think. Taking a bottom-up approach will allow you to gain insight into your employees’ wants and needs. This will make them more invested in their work and boost engagement levels.
Promote Two-Way Communication
Communication between employees and employers is a two-way street. Your staff requires insights into what is expected of them. Open lines of communication can help all parties work together more productively.
Recognize Good Work
The feeling of being rewarded for a job well done is gratifying. It can also help foster a creative environment where ideas are welcome. Appreciate your employees for their achievements. You can do this through simple actions like sending a personal “Thank You” email or throwing an annual award ceremony.
Invest in Personal Growth
Give your employees opportunities for learning and advancement. Investing in personal growth helps your staff feel challenged, valued, and a part of your team. It’s not just about giving them more money but showing them they are an important piece of a greater whole. Our annual Retention Reports show the number one reason employees quit their job since 2010 is a lack of Career Development.
Hire Competent Managers
We’ve already mentioned how good managers are critical for any employee engagement plan. Incompetent managers tend to micromanage and are a quick way to disengage employees from their work and lead them to looking for a new job with a different company.
Create a Sense of Purpose
Your employees need to believe in your company and see how their individual roles contribute to your mission. Offer them plenty of employee engagement activities and opportunities to bring out a sense of purpose in their position. You may be surprised about how this will do you wonders, especially for the retention rate.
Sketch a Success Roadmap
Employees need direction about their roles and growth opportunities in the organization. Draft a clear success roadmap that brings all your workforce on board. Through this, you will be able to double your productivity and stay at the top in an increasingly competitive labor market.
Improve Your Employee Engagement Today
An unengaged workplace will cost you annually through indirect costs like lower productivity, absenteeism, and workplace errors, as well as direct costs such as higher health care claims, workers’ compensation, disability claims, and the cost of replacing an employee. If you’re serious about improving your bottom line, consider focusing on employee appreciation and making them feel they matter. Create an exciting working atmosphere by establishing better communication systems, offering growth opportunities, and hiring the right managers. Do you want to learn more about how to increase employee engagement? Contact us today and get the exact results you’re looking for.
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