A recent survey revealed 70 percent of American workers are not engaged in their work, or workplace. As an HR professional, it is your job to recruit, on-board, and retain a high-quality workforce. What can you do to keep employee engagement—and retention—high? In an update of its State of the American Workplace survey, Gallup found only about one-third of employees are satisfactorily engaged on the job. Although management and C-suite executives appear to have a higher level of engagement, a disengaged workforce means declining profit, reduced productivity, and increased employee turnover. A comfortable company culture is a factor increasingly considered by potential hires. If your employee morale is low and turnover high, take steps to improve your workplace experience. Before you hire a consultant to investigate and realign your environment, consider these simple—but meaningful—tips for effective workplace engagement:
- Communicate the basics: Ensure employees, at all levels, understand the expectations of their job, introductions are made, necessary training is received and all on-boarding checkpoints are covered.
- Reduce segregation: When managerial and regular workforce employees work in proximity, relationships are built, communication flows, and productivity usually follows. The cubicle environment of twenty years ago does not lend itself to innovation, or idea-sharing. When needed, be sure your working environment is designed to support team and group work.
- Flexibility: Flexible schedules and remote work are fast becoming highly valued features in attracting and retaining valuable personnel. Mobile time and attendance management helps employees—and you—track time wherever your employee is deployed.
- Authenticity: Not surprisingly, employees in all cohorts want to know their work is valued—and they are valued for the work they do. Entertainment giant, The Walt Disney Company laid off 250 skilled employees in October, 2014, after outsourcing their jobs to a managed service provider. Personnel laid off were given the opportunity to earn 10 percent severance pay to train their replacements. While Disney saves a bundle replacing highly skilled workers with immigrant outsource workers, the Magic Kingdom loses luster in the American workplace.
- Effective HR management: HR personnel are usually the first and last point of contact for most employees. Through recruiting, training, scheduling, and professional development, ensure your on-boarding and off-boarding is smooth, welcoming, and in compliance with company and other regulations. A well-designed digital HR platform saves you time, money, and paper—while increasing employee engagement throughout their tenure with your company.
When companies are engaged with their workers, employees return that investment. Reduce turnover, and increase profit, by making the right hires—and keeping valued personnel aware of their importance to you. Should you be thinking about employee engagement? The answer is yes.