How does employee engagement impact retention?
Employee engagement. Every workplace is talking about it. It’s a KPI you’re striving to measure and track as a leader. And it’s no doubt a buzzword in your boardroom meetings. But with distributed employees and remote teams, how can you improve employee engagement? And how does this impact retention?
According to Gallup’s State of the Workforce 2022 report, employee engagement in the workplace is decreasing. More than half of workers are emotionally detached and 19% report feeling miserable. Pretty damning statistics, really.
A Salesforce report recently found that disengaged employees cost the UK economy £340 billion, and that’s if they stay within the organisation. If they decide to leave, finding a replacement can cost you up to 200% of their salary.
If you’re a team leader, manager or in charge of improving employee engagement, you’re no doubt feeling the pressure right now and you probably have a load of unanswered questions.
How do you know if your people are engaged? How do you improve employee engagement? And how can you measure and track your efforts?
We’ve got you covered!
Let’s start with the why
Why is it so important to engage your people?
There are many so many benefits for an organisation when employees feel engaged.
For one, Gallup reports that engaged workers earn profits 23% higher than organisations with disengaged workers. And if that wasn’t enough to get you thinking, Harvard Business Review notes that highly engaged teams are 21% more productive and have 28% less internal theft than those with low engagement. Highly engaged businesses also have double the rate of success compared to those with low engagement.
Finally, engagement also gives people passion and purpose for the work they’re doing. The New York Times held a study that found employees who have passion and purpose for their work are 3 times as likely to stay with their organisation than those who don’t.
So, engagement = profit, productivity, and retention.
Yup. It’s a pretty big deal for every. single. businesses. So, you can’t afford to ignore it!
How to improve employee engagement
Typically, engaged employees are highly involved in, and enthusiastic about the work they do and the organisation they work for. They drive performance and innovation, collaborate with their colleagues, champion new initiatives, and are generally happier and more satisfied.
Happy employees, of course, are a huge bonus. From the way in which they talk to others about the company they work for, to the work they produce, and the ideas they come up with.
However, if you’re concerned your organisation or team is being weighed down with disengagement, don’t panic. We’re on hand to help.
Instead, consider the following points in this guide.
Start by reviewing your employee care strategy
If high engagement drives outcomes such as; enhancing financial performance, increasing employee retention, and accelerating company goals, how is it achieved?
There are many facets to employee engagement in the workplace. One of the most important is your employee care strategy.
Research by Gallup found a striking relationship between engagement and wellbeing. High wellbeing enhances the benefits of engagement - meaning even better performance for your organisation.
Simply engaging employees with policies, procedures, and perks is not enough. Organisations have to truly demonstrate that they care about their people. They listen to their thoughts, respect their beliefs, encourage collaboration, and truly value their contributions.
But employees are struggling. In fact, The Workplace Health Report 2022 found over 60% of employees feel anxious. And anxiety has a profound impact on wellbeing, affecting both our minds and bodies, not just at work but in every aspect of life.
Engagement and wellbeing interact with each other in powerful ways. Often, we only consider engagement as being something that happens at work, but analysis by Gallup suggests this doesn’t acknowledge the full picture.
In fact, individual experiences at work really influence life outside of work. Those who consistently experience high levels of burnout at work report how they find it hard to enjoy life outside of work and fulfil family responsibilities. Clearly, the cross-over has far-reaching consequences.
The message is clear for employers - wellbeing and engagement really matter.
There has never been a more important time to introduce impactful employee wellbeing initiatives into your strategy. Doing so will not only increase engagement levels in your organisation but impact productivity and retention too.
Engagement. Productivity. Wellbeing. Retention.
See how all of these are interlinked?
How can managers positively affect employee engagement?
Leaders at all levels are crucial in improving employee engagement, but it is line managers and team leaders who have the biggest impact on individuals’ experiences.
Managers are however facing more pressure than ever before, with so many new challenges including hybrid teams and new working environments. And with this new pressure comes even less time to juggle everything. Managers are reportedly only able to spend 30 minutes or less each day on developing and inspiring their teams.
With so much to juggle, it’s not surprising that managers are feeling overwhelmed and sometimes don’t have the capability to understand the overall picture of their team’s wellbeing.
But managers can still make a difference to the overall health of an organisation, even with just half an hour each day. And they can get support to understand exactly how and where to target their efforts too.
How to positively encourage your people as a manager or team leader
Facilitating open conversations and encouraging a trusting culture has a significant effect on employee wellbeing. As does identifying and working with the natural strengths of your employees.
In most organisations, the missing link is understanding how employees are feeling. Not with lagging indicators like annual employee surveys that don’t ask the right questions and take too long to respond to situations. Wellbeing is personal to everyone, and it changes all the time, so it’s impossible for employee surveys to validate the feelings of people in real-time.
If you work for a business that doesn’t prioritise honest conversations, you might find team members unwilling to share their thoughts. And this could be holding you back as well as prohibiting you from leading your team with the best foot forward.
It can be tricky implementing more open communication. But technology can bridge this gap, with platforms like Loopin capable of facilitating communication and establishing trust. You can begin to understand how your employees are feeling in real-time and address situations before they affect business outcomes like employee turnover.
What results can I expect from using Loopin?
Loopin provides employees at every level with an opportunity to share how they’re feeling, providing real-time insight to managers.
Each morning, employees complete a simple three-step check-in. Employees can choose to be open or private whilst providing support and kudos to others.
Data from the daily check-in provides team leaders with real-time insights, delving deeper than traditional employee surveys you may currently be using.
Using predictive analytics, we’ll alert you if teams are heading towards burnout or trending upwards in engagement, helping leaders target effort where it’s most needed and put in preventative measures.
Retaining your top talent starts with recognising people as individuals. Understanding their individual needs. Recognising their contributions and ensuring they understand how they contribute to the overall company mission and vision. Engaging them in ways that go beyond tick-the-box activities. Demonstrating your business is one that truly cares about its people. And nurturing a culture of psychological safety with inclusive leadership at the core.
If you have any questions about engaging employees and implementing wellbeing initiatives like those that we’ve mentioned above, click here to book in a call with one of our team. We’re with you all the way!