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What is Employee Engagement, and Why is it Important

Employee Engagement

Read on to learn why employee engagement makes for happier employees and boosts a business’s bottom line.

In today’s dynamic business environment, retaining employees is one of the biggest challenges for most organizations. According to research on more than 600 businesses, 63% of companies consider employee retention more challenging than hiring them. 

Today, more than a third of workers are searching for a job, so employers are spending over $2.9M per day looking for replacement workers. That is $1.1B per year.

So, what does it take to retain top talent?

Employee engagement is the extent to which employees are committed to the organization, put in discretionary efforts, and feel passionate about their jobs. Today, employees turn to their leaders to recognize, connect, and support them in the dynamic business environment. No matter what you call it (employee experience, job satisfaction, or culture), the principles of employee engagement remain the same. Employees who do not feel valued, supported, connected, and empowered will not work as hard as employees who do.  

In a nutshell, an effective employee engagement strategy can help to stay on top of the game. Employee engagement can help businesses to leverage the top talent to achieve more profits. Engaged employees are happier, more involved, and more productive.

Benefits of employee engagement

  • Benefit 1: Increases productivity 

A Gallup study revealed that engaged employees are 21% more productive and create a productive workforce.

  • Benefit 2: Cost saving 

While hiring new employees costs additional time and money, it is important to engage and retain existing employees to save business costs.

  • Benefit 3: Higher sales

If the customers are satisfied, employees are happier, and better work quality is delivered, it results in better sales. Highly engaged organizations have an average of  20% higher sales than their counterparts. Recent research study has also indicated that the manager’s behavior that drives engagement drives better business results. 

  • Benefit 4: Better work quality 

Research by Dale Carnegie shows that engaged employees outperform others by 202%. Employees who are not well-connected will not wish to put in effort and get their work done on time. Therefore, it is essential to leverage the benefits of employee engagement to enhance quality at the workplace.

  • Benefit 5: Increases revenue 

A global engagement report by Aon indicates that every 5-point increase in employee engagement level leads to a rise of 3% in business revenue. When employees are engaged, they go the extra mile to achieve more.

  • Benefit 6: Happy employees lead to happier customers 

When you keep your employees happy, the customers will naturally get happier. Engaged employees are more friendly,  attentive, and build better customer relationships.

  • Benefit 7: Drives innovation

When employees are engaged, they have an improved zeal to work. They continuously come up with new ideas and dynamic strategies to drive incredible innovation. 

  • Benefit 8: Improves employee retention

Gallup’s research indicates that 51% of employees are planning to leave their current jobs due to internal conflicts, lack of pay raises, and lack of recognition. When employees are engaged well, they are more likely to stay, reducing the cost of turnover.

  • Benefit 9: Increased employee safety

Employee engagement drives the mental and emotional connection of the employees to the workplace. Research has also indicated that there are 70% fewer safety accidents in the workplace that are highly engaged. The engaged employees focus on the task rather than worrying about workplace issues.

  • Benefit 10: Lower employee absenteeism

Gallup’s research indicated that highly engaged workplaces have 41% lower absenteeism. When employees are engaged, they tend to be firmly committed to the mission and vision of their organization. Engaged employees are invested in their job and care for the success of their team and the organization.

How to improve employee engagement in your organization?

If you are all set to leverage the benefits of employee engagement, the first thing to do is to stop considering engagement as a survey project. It is high time to consider the fact that engagement is an ongoing process. Here are the steps to boost employee engagement in the organization.

  • Communicate employee survey results 

The employees need to know their voices are being heard, and follow-up plans are under process. It is important to have a strong workplace communication strategy and share the organization-wide survey results for further analysis and discussions with individual teams. 

  • Focus on specific improvement areas

Once the analysis is done, focus on developing the most critical areas. You can identify the effort and impact levels with the help of the choice map. This will help you prioritize the actions by highlighting the best focus areas.

  • Designate task forces 

After the selection of target areas, it is vital to create accountability. The tasks can be assigned to the workforce so that they can brainstorm ideas and commitments to drive the change in their target areas. 

  • Progress updates

Once the team members are assigned the improvement goals, they need to provide progress updates regularly. If there are any gaps in the results, the accountable team members should be nudged.

  • Tie employee engagement efforts to business outcomes

Connect your efforts to tangible business results like sales, financial performance, turnover rates, customer satisfaction, and more. When employees and leaders notice the results, they are more likely to be invested in the process.

  • Make engagement a continuous strategy

If you look forward to improving employee engagement, it should be a continuous strategy, not a one-time project. So, it is essential to prioritize employee engagement activities throughout the year to see a better return on investment of your time, cost, and efforts. 

Improving employee engagement is much easier with an effective employee engagement platform.

Human resources technology for operational efficiency
Human resources reporting software
Jason Skidmore

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