We talk a lot about employee engagement these days, but what does that actually mean? For some companies, it’s free meals and midafternoon ping-pong tourneys, whereas others believe it to be a result of stock options and learning opportunities. While each one of these tactics can certainly enhance employee engagement, they don’t get to the actual core of the condition.
Employee engagement is the commitment that your employees bring to their work each day. That’s pretty much the extent of it.
Let’s say, for example, one of your employees rolls out of bed in the morning and thinks, “Ick. I’ve gotta go to work today” — and then weighs whether today is a good day to call in sick. Would you count them among your more engaged workforce?
Here’s a hint: No.
Engaged workers care about their jobs and your company. They don’t come to work just to collect a paycheck but to help you reach your business objectives, and you’ll often see the impact in these six ways:
Don’t throw money at people and expect them to be much more productive. There’s more to it than that. Research suggests it isn’t money that drives productivity but happiness. In fact, happiness can boost productivity by as much as 12 percent. And engaged employees often fall into that camp.
Employment is a lot like a relationship. If you’re not happy, you’re going to get out. But engaged workers are 87 percent less likely to leave a company when compared to disengaged staff. That’s because they’re just plain happier. If you want to reduce turnover, which costs an average of $15,000 per person, rethink your engagement strategies.
If you take care of your employees, they’ll take care of your business interests, including your customers. Companies that excel in at customer service have nearly twice as many engaged workers than those with poor customer services. If you want to improve your customer service, improve the engagement level of your employees.
People talk, and technology has made it easier for them to talk to more than just the people on their block. What your employees say about your company will have a direct impact on your reputation. If they’re engaged and like where they’re working, it only stands to reason that they’ll only have good things to say about you.
People get sick — that’s just a fact of life. And yes, there will always be those staffers who suffer from mysterious “ailments” only between the hours of nine and five, but not engaged employees. They only take an average 3.9 sick days per year, while disengaged workers rack up nearly 11 missed days.
It’s not like you got into business for the fun of it. You want to make money, and those businesses with more engaged workers tend to see more profits. According to a study by Towers Perrin, companies with engaged staffers saw a 19-percent increase in operating income within just one year, while those with disengaged workers experienced a 33 percent decrease. If you want a profitable business, engage your workers.
People will always be your greatest asset. That’s why it’s so important to put them first — even before profits. When employees fall to the bottom of your company’s priorities, you can almost guarantee that it’ll eventually impact your bottom line.
If you’d like to learn more about employee engagement, or discuss what you can do to start building a more engaged workforce, please feel free to contact us today. Staffmark offers fully customized talent acquisition and retention solutions. Also look for specific employee engagement ideas on this blog in the coming weeks!