Your Hidden Gateway to Employee Engagement

Navjit Singh -18 July, 2019 -Employee Engagement

71% of respondents rank employee engagement as very important to achieving overall organizational success.

24% of respondents say employees in their organization are highly engaged.

Employee engagement has become the leading business priority for top executives across the globe. In this rapidly transforming connected economy, business leaders know that having a high-performing workforce can be the difference between success or just survival. It is a highly recognized fact that highly engaged employees can have a positive impact on innovation, productivity, and bottom-line performance while reducing costs related to hiring and retention in highly competitive and skill-short talent markets.

But while most top executives see a clear business demand to improve employee engagement, many have yet to develop structured ways to measure and improve employee engagement. Here are five approaches organizations can use to help build their growing community of engaged employees:

  • Avoiding simple satisfaction surveys. When a company surveys its employees for their opinions, those employees expect action to follow. But businesses tend to make the mistake of using surveys to collect data that is either not relevant or couldn't be acted upon. Organizations that have yielded significant results from their employee engagement initiatives follow a structured approach rather than any ad-hoc approach. They assess the readiness of the organization, carefully craft employee engagement surveys so they ask direct, clear questions that go beyond measuring "satisfaction." They then pore through the data to find the hidden stories of what's working and where there are pockets of dissatisfaction. Finally, top executives use this information to create strategies and policies going forward.
  • Make engagement goals simple and realistic to measure. Business leaders must make engagement goals relatable to employee's days in office to get their commitment.
  • Collaborative goal alignment with Corporate Goals. Research shows that collaborative goal setting drives employee engagement because when goals are set collaboratively; employees can see how their work contributes to corporate objectives and team missions.
  • DataDriven initiatives. Use engagement initiatives that are linked to performance measures to see what's working and create recognition programs to reinforce those behaviors.
  • Coach first-line managers to lead engagement in their teams. Line managers are primary drivers for their employees' engagement levels. Companies should coach managers to take an active role and responsibility in building engagement plans with their employees.

While each approach is important and has the propensity to drive engagement, we would be focusing on the first part of the puzzle in this blog, Employee Engagement Surveys. The reason is that they are easy to execute and provide a great starting point to judge the pulse of engagement in the organization.

Employee Engagement Surveys is not an Employee Satisfaction Survey

Employee satisfaction only indicates the level of content of an employee without considering the level of motivation, alignment, or involvement. For someone, not getting measured for performance and just spending 8 hours a day in the office is a good reason for them to be satisfied.

While some of these things are the same which will dissatisfy the high performers. Engaged employees feel more emotionally committed to the organizations, and have a clear understanding of how the small contribution they make will impact the organizations. They are self-motivated and are accountable for what's expected out of them.

So the key is to plan for an Employee Engagement Survey to get to the pulse of the organization.

So, how to measure Employee Engagement?

The most common way to measure Engagement is via the Surveys. Since measuring employee engagement is complex, there are a variety of surveys that can actually help you get a better handle of your employee's engagement. Some of the most common being

  • Pulse Surveys
  • New Hire Surveys
  • Exit Interviews
  • 360 Degree
  • Employee NPS

It's always a best practice to benchmark your results with the peers to understand how you stack against your industry peers.

What's Next

The best course of action after you measure employee engagement is to communicate as transparently as possible. Some of the things to follow would be-

  • Communicate the Results
  • Pick a couple of Low hanging, high impact items to improve
  • Follow up & Repeat

Engagement surveys are not for Christmas but are a continuous activity. Keep on continuously checking to readjust and realign to achieve the best results. Organizations with an engaged workforce outclass their competition & often engagement is the key differentiator when it comes to growth and innovation.