Organizations regularly target high levels of employee engagement. Among other positive outcomes, high levels of employee engagement can translate into higher productivity, lower turnover, fewer safety incidents, lower absenteeism, higher profitability, and better customer ratings. The following 2018 statistics are meant to awaken or reawaken awareness of the alarmingly low rate of engagement levels within companies, as well as provide insight on what can be done to help organizations benefit from high employee engagement.
1. 15% of employees worldwide are engaged in their jobs. (Gallup)
2. 42% of employees say learning and development is the most important benefit when deciding where to work. (Udemy)
4. Only 15% of adults said they wouldn’t leave their current job for any reason. (Yoh)
5. 83% of workers participating in a mentoring program admitted that their experience positively influenced their desire to stay at their organization. (River)
6. 60% of employees said that meetings are a source of distraction. (Udemy)
7. 77% of workers said they’d be more likely to accept a job offer if they knew they could telecommute at least some of the time. (Robert Half)
8. 77% of employees reported they are more productive when working away from the office. (Upwork)
9. 32% of employees would take a 10% pay cut for a job they’re more interested in or passionate about. (Jobvite)
10. Businesses with a strong learning culture enjoy employee engagement and retention rates around 30-50% higher than those that don’t. (Robert Half)
Through these recent statistics, we can learn a lot. Though employee engagement seems very low worldwide, there are plenty of ways to improve an organization to raise engagement levels. A few to note based on the statistics above are:
Opportunity for learning and development
Wise employees know that order to get ahead of the game, the continued addition of work knowledge and skills is essential. Those who sit in a stagnate job without growth opportunities are not engaged and don’t feel valued. It brings to mind words from my little league football coach after yelling at me during a play in practice. He said, “The reason that I yell at you is because I see the potential in you and that’s why I use my energy to communicate with you.” I’m not sure how I felt about the yelling, but I knew I felt valued and more engaged once I realized that I had potential.
Career training and development
This is similar to the previous point but focused more on a career path rather than specific knowledge or skills. It’s difficult to wake up and be excited to engage in a job that tells you there’s no option for promotion. It’s almost like playing a video game with only one level which you’ve mastered.
Provide a mentoring program
Companies like Boeing, Caterpillar, and Zynga have been praised for their excellent corporate mentoring programs. There are options for formal or informal mentoring programs. Whatever fits your organizational culture, it’s safe to say that these programs often increase employee engagement.
Make sure meetings are needed and not a distraction
So many employees fill their agendas with meeting after meeting. Many times, employees are too nice or nervous to decline a meeting invite when they know they don’t need to be there. Companies that are more efficient and productive will train leaders and other employees who create meeting invites to only invite individuals who need to be there. It’s difficult to enjoy your work and be effective when you have unnecessary meetings interrupting your day.
Offer options for telecommuting
For many reasons telecommuting can be a beneficial for employees AND the organization. As outlined in stat number eight, above, the majority of employees working out of the office are more productive. Sometimes it can be very refreshing to get a change of scenery, get away from the office chatter, or get some fresh air while working outside. While some job requirements simply don’t allow for this, it should be mentioned that relaxation is also very important. So for jobs that don’t allow a change of scenery, it could be that much more important to encourage employees to use vacation days and re-energize.
Measure job interest and passion during the selection process
There are many ways to measure job interest and passion in the selection process. A job analysis will help identify tasks, elements and competencies that are important for a job. Then personality assessments, cognitive ability tests, realistic job previews, simulations, and interviews can measure if those candidates possess high levels of those competencies. Start off on the right foot by hiring people with high potential for job engagement from the beginning.
Develop a strong company culture of learning
Company culture can have a strong influence on employee engagement. Make learning a key component of your organizational culture will allow learning to happen naturally and consistently. When this culture is created successfully, there isn’t is one single resource that employees depend on for development, rather, every employee is a resource. The culture allows for a whole environment of learning where everyone is a teacher and a student. On top of this, the culture provides additional structure, resources, and encouragement to learn and grow together.
Employee engagement is beneficial for the organization and the employee. No one wants to work 40 hours a week doing something that doesn’t interest them. The suggestions above will guide both parties to achieve success and enjoy the journey at the same time.