The level of employee engagement in your workforce greatly influences how successful your company will be.
Gallup’s Q12 meta-analysis of business units in 96 countries found a strong link between engagement and performance outcomes such as employee retention, productivity, safety, and profitability
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted employee engagement across the board. According to Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace: 2022 Report, only 21% of employees are engaged at work, and only 33% of employees are thriving in their work environment.
In the same report, Gallup estimates that low levels of employee engagement cost the global economy US$7.8 billion each year.
Thus, you can see it’s important to promote a high level of employee engagement in your company. But first, you must understand what it is.
What Is Employee Engagement?
Simply put, it’s how much of a stake your employees have in their work, their team, and the company they’re a part of.
High employee engagement means they’re satisfied and feel suitably challenged in their current role. They feel that their day-to-day work is a valued, respected, and appreciated contribution to your company.
Because they take such a positive mindset into what they do, they can have a significant effect on the growth of your company.
How Does Employee Engagement Increase Your Company’s Growth?
Engaged employees are motivated to produce good work, and ultimately be a net benefit to your company. This results in the following benefits towards the growth of your company.
1. High Employee Engagement Leads To Better Performance
When your employees are engaged with the work they do, they’ll be that much more productive and efficient, and perform better overall.
According to Gallup’s report on employee engagement, companies with a highly engaged workforce enjoy 21% greater profitability over their counterparts with less-engaged employees.
Such companies will enjoy the following outcomes;
- An 81% reduction in absenteeism rates,
- A reduction from 18% to 43% in turnover, depending on existing turnover levels,
- An 18% increase in productivity for sales teams, and
- A 23% increase in overall profitability
All in all, companies with engaged workforces outperform competitors with less-engaged workforces by up to a whopping 202%.
It makes sense; employees need to be fully engaged in their work if they are to make the best use of their time and effort. This means that employee engagement levels translate directly into productivity levels for your company.
2. High Employee Engagement Leads To More Effective Collaboration
Another result of high employee engagement in your workforce is effective communication between teammates, resulting in improved collaboration when they’re working together on the same tasks.
It also means your employees will be more knowledgeable in their areas of expertise, enabling them to bring more useful ideas to the table in brainstorming sessions.
Therefore, promoting employee engagement in your workforce will lead to improvements in the quality of ideas, reduction in internal conflicts, and various other benefits for collaborative efforts in your company.
However, be careful not to fall into the trap of thinking that ‘more’ means ‘better’. Giving your employees more opportunities to communicate with each other doesn’t necessarily lead to better collaboration.
For example, don’t overdo the meetings; not even the virtual ones that have become more common as more people are working from home than before.
A recent study on the effects of remote work found that most employees show signs of burnout when having virtual meetings every day.
3. Highly-engaged Employees Provide More And Better Feedback
No matter how smoothly your company operates, there’s always room for improvement.
Highly-engaged employees have the confidence to bring pressing issues to your attention and provide input into resolving them.
They’re also more likely to produce more ideas for improving upon your company’s products or services.
On the other hand, if your employees are not engaged or actively disengaged in their work, they’re much less likely to contribute such useful ideas.
4. High Employee Engagement Minimizes Staff Turnover
Employee retention is always a concern for companies like yours. A Joblist survey reveals that 73% of employees would consider leaving their jobs if they get the right offer, whether they’re actively looking or not.
That can be frustrating especially when you’ve onboarded new hires, only for them to leave shortly afterward and waste your efforts.
However, one way to minimize staff turnover and improve employee retention is to maintain a high level of employee engagement. And prioritizing engagement as early as the onboarding process has a significant impact.
How to Drive Employee Engagement Within Your Organizations
Now that you know all this, how do you maintain high employee engagement in your company? Here’s what you can do;
1. Focus On Promoting Employee Engagement From The Start
When it comes to keeping your employees engaged in their work, half of the battle is won from the very beginning.
According to Silkroad’s 2017 State of Talent report, 53% of HR professionals surveyed in it reported an increase in employee engagement simply by improving the onboarding process in their companies.
Therefore, you should do the same. Take a look at your onboarding process, and see how you can adjust it to drive higher levels of employee engagement.
For example, if new hires provide feedback that the onboarding process hasn’t fully prepared them for their role, include additional training to better prepare new hires for transitioning into their role.
2. Communicate Your Company’s Goals Clearly
As your company grows, you’ll have to pivot your strategy and set new revenue benchmarks based on its previous success.
But your employees may not be fully aware of how their day-to-day work contributes to these evolving goals. This can leave them feeling like they have no stake in the milestones your company achieves.
According to Trade Press Services, effective internal communications motivate 85% of employees to become more engaged in the workplace.
Consider internal communications such as employee newsletters, press releases, event updates and other company news such as milestones and successful projects
More importantly, emphasize how the individual goals and day-to-day work of all your employees contribute to the team and towards the larger goals of the company.
When your employees can see that their efforts make a meaningful difference to your company, they’ll be more driven and engaged in their work.
3. Fulfill Your Employees’ Developmental Needs
Last but not least, the level of employee engagement in your company depends largely on whether they can fulfill their developmental needs.
An Employee Job Satisfaction and Engagement survey by SHRM found that only 29% of employees are “very satisfied” with the career advancement opportunities that are available to them.
And according to a survey by Korn Ferry, 33% of employees job-hop because they’ve grown bored with their current workplace, and are looking for new challenges.
Therefore, you have to identify each of your employees’ developmental needs, and what your company can do to help fulfill them. They come in four categories:
- Basic Needs (having the right tools and information for the job)
- Individual Needs (recognition for their work)
- Teamwork Needs (gelling well within their team)
- Personal Growth Needs (opportunities to expand their role or skillset)
Addressing all 4 categories can help your employees feel like the company is invested in their success, and inspire them to stay engaged in their work in return.
High Employee Engagement Leads Directly To Company Growth
How engaged your employees are in their work has a direct influence on the success of your company.
With a high level of employee engagement, your company benefits from greater workforce performance, improved collaboration within teams, actionable feedback from employees, and lower staff turnover.
However, improving employee engagement is easier said than done.
You have to promote engagement in your employees starting from the onboarding process, keep them informed of your company’s evolving goals, and pay attention to fulfilling their developmental needs.