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How to improve employee engagement in the workplace

Make sure you’re one step ahead of the competition with our insights on increasing engagement.

Regardless of how your employees feel at any one time, you can improve employee engagement. Although it can take time and effort to increase employee engagement, with the right approach, tools and commitment, you can measure engagement and ensure it grows over time.

This article will focus on ways to improve employee engagement in your organisation.

Employee engagement concerns how committed your people are to work for your organisation. Engaged employees will be motivated and satisfied with their roles and other factors, including the organisational culture, leadership, and the people they work with.

If your employees are engaged with the work that they're doing, their contribution to the broader organisation, and the people they work for and work with, then they are more likely to work to the best of their ability. 

Furthermore, if they're engaged, productivity and retention should increase as people won't be looking to leave. In addition, if your people enjoy their job and working for you, absenteeism rates should hopefully be low. 

You need to measure how happy your employees are before attempting to increase employee engagement. There are many ways you can do this, and your strategy to measure it would depend on factors such as organisational size, locations, culture and budget.

A common way to measure employee engagement is to carry out an annual or biannual employee engagement survey for all staff. 

These can be anonymous if you think it will help with employee honesty, and there are employee engagement survey templates you can use to structure the survey. They allow you to analyse the data to understand trends in engagement. From there, you can create action plans to focus on the areas of most concern.

In addition, you can carry out regular pulse surveys, which are shorter than annual engagement surveys and may focus on specific teams or locations of concern.

Once you understand your engagement levels and where the main concerns or issues are, you can create specific plans to implement change. However, as an ongoing rule, there are some engagement fundamentals you need to focus on to achieve ongoing engagement. 

According to a survey by Great Place To Work, employees report four factors employees that influence why they love working at their organisation:

  • Great communication
  • Trusted and respected leaders
  • Work flexibility
  • Equity

Whether you stick to the areas above or focus on other workplace factors, you need to create an organisational culture that promotes high engagement. Here are some ways you can work towards an engagement culture:

Communication: Your workforce must understand your organisational strategy and goals, and transparency is essential to build and maintain trust and create an engaged and high-performing workforce. 

Although your organisation will have its own tried and tested communication channels, ensure all employees have access to the same information simultaneously. So, whether it’s regular emails, newsletters or via an internal digital platform, update employees and keep communication consistent and ongoing.

All employee meetings are a great way to update your people on company performance or change and show employees what their work has contributed to. This can enhance a sense of inclusion, trust, and purpose.

Communication needs to be a two-way process. So, while it’s essential for employers to keep staff updated, employees also need opportunities to give feedback.

Therefore, an essential aspect of your engagement strategy should be giving employees different feedback channels. This may be through employee feedback surveys, 360-degree feedback or other feedback channels. If you create a culture where employee feedback is the norm, you will have ongoing feedback to assess to measure engagement continuously.

Asking your people for feedback shows that you're interested in their opinions. Over time, such regular feedback should form part of the culture and help to increase employee engagement.

If employees don't have job satisfaction, they may look to other employers. Every employee needs the opportunity to discuss their development so they can enhance their skills and develop themselves. If the employer agrees to training or development, they must commit to it. Otherwise, employees may feel let down or disengaged.

A performance management cycle is essential to review roles, development and purpose and is vital to your engagement strategy. By establishing a transparent performance management strategy, you are providing consistency to performance reviews, and you can align business goals to employee performance. 

At Momentive, our SurveyMonkey service can help you to measure engagement across locations and our pricing plans are designed to fit your needs. Sign up now to improve employee engagement using our survey design, data analysis and other engagement tools.

You could hold focus groups within the organisation to gain employee feedback or discuss engagement in team meetings. However, the concern with focus groups and team meetings is that employees may feel uncomfortable being honest in their feedback.

Engagement can impact company reputation. If your people are engaged, they are more likely to say positive things about the organisation they work for to others. As a result, you should benefit from low turnover and absence, and it should be easier to attract clients and staff.

Individuals are often time-poor, so making work difficult for them by introducing lots of different platforms for them to use may frustrate them. Digital engagement platforms can help employees to receive organisation communication, updates, feedback and information in one place, wherever they are located.

Yes. Employees must understand why they are doing their job and how it contributes to broader organisational success. They must know that their purpose goes beyond just making the organisation money. Employees need the opportunity to give feedback if they are lacking purpose so that employers can help them establish it.