What is Employee Engagement?
Employee engagement in work is the main element of the company’s growth and development, regardless of the current market situation.
Every manager dreams of employees who work with full dedication, strive to do their work faster and better, improve their professional knowledge and are ready to share their experience with others. Involved employees work harder and better, show initiative, and have high productivity.
Engagement is a physical, emotional, and intellectual state that motivates employees to do their best job.
Companies use employee engagement research to diagnose employee attitudes towards their work and the company, and to assess the performance of managers and HR services. Employee engagement affects total shareholder return, productivity, employee turnover, and customer satisfaction.
Engagement is the readiness of employees to go beyond their responsibilities, to spend additional energy to achieve the company’s goals. Engagement occurs when an emotional choice is made in favor of the company.
Employee engagement indicators are loyalty to the company, the desire to stay in it, as well as identification with the company.
Factors of Employee Engagement
There are many factors of employee engagement:
- strategy, mission and values of the company;
- job responsibilities;
- motivation system;
- working conditions;
- relationships with the manager and colleagues;
- training, development and so on.
5 Companies’ Best Solutions
The general situation with the employee engagement leaves much to be desired. According to the Gallup’s research (Adkins, 2020) conducted in 2011-2015, the major part of employees still stays disengaged from their work. Having conducted interviews with 80,844 employees, Gallup’s team found that only a third of employees is engaged. However, there are best practices of increasing the level of employee engagement known to the general audience. According to Maier (2016), there are five companies that keep their employees’ engagement at the highest level. They are: Full Contact, Southwest Airlines, Legal Monkeys, Screwfix, and Dreamworks. However, their strategies are different and unique. Aiming at keeping their workers’ commitment to the job and, most importantly, to the company, they deploy various approaches to engage people in what they do.
First, let us consider the Full Contact. This company has a rule that each year their employees have to go on holiday somewhere and disengage any type of work completely. They pay $7500 to take such a vacation since for some of the workers there can be little financial incentive to organize a holiday somewhere. This strategy also helps to solve a problem of pressure on the workplace since such disengagement practices help the workers realize that they are not the only one able to fulfill their job.
As for Southwest Airlines, their strategy involves employee engagement in terms of allowing workers to collaborate with the management on a variety of decisions (for example, new uniform designs). Such practice helps people feel themselves a full part of the greater team since their voice matters.
Legal Monkeys have created a real-time feedback culture wherein people can give feedback about their peers and coworkers. Although such practice could result in a chaotic movement of complaints and intrigues, the company has managed to encourage a positive culture. One of the tools for upholding a positive atmosphere was the creation of the Appreciation Board, a frame where employees can write a note or leave something showing their appreciation to their colleague. Screwfix has also developed a feed-back culture, wherein not only managers give their opinion on the employees’ performance, but the latter also can share their views on the management. This strategy creates an open and honest culture where the dialogue between all the departments and levels is possible.
Dreamworks has their focus on boosting their employees’ creativity by providing an open space of sharing their non-related projects at the company’s big parties and events. Apart from increasing the workers’ creative thinking, this strategy also helps create an open culture.
However, the problem for many companies is limited budgets, expensive research services, and tight deadlines set by management. Some managers focus on the impact of employee relationships within the company, on business processes, for others it is important to know the degree of awareness of employees about the mission, the company’s development strategy, and others focus on the company’s value system and its employees (Mone & London, 2018). All this should be reflected in the questionnaire.
The questionnaire should include data on the gender, age of the employee, work experience in the company, the name of the department where he works, and also look at the answers to the questions depending on each of these indicators.
Based on the results of the study, a meeting is held with the company’s management team. It not only summarizes the results, but also makes suggestions on how to increase certain indicators of engagement, which were noted by employees as low (Mone & London, 2018).
Whatever the results of the survey, one should not withhold information from employees. Employees can lose confidence in an employer who is unwilling to show negative results. It is better to diplomatically describe the results, explain what the company can do to change the situation.
It is useful to conduct such studies every six months or once a year and observe the change in indicators. This will provide the HR department and management with valuable statistics for working with company personnel.
Adkins, A. (2020). Employee Engagement in U.S. Stagnant in 2015. Gallup. Web.
Maier, S. (2016). 5 Companies Getting Employee Engagement Right. Entrepreneur. Web.
Mone, E. M. and London, M. (2018). Employee engagement through effective performance management: A practical guide for managers. Routledge.
Luria S. (2019). These Five Famous Companies Get Employee Engagement. Poll Everywhere Blog. Web.
Shrm. (2019). Developing and Sustaining Employee Engagement. Web.