As you know, employee engagement is an important factor in how well organizations function. But how important is it, really? Joe Wedgwood of The Happiness Index answers that question using the latest research on engagement — and he provides some helpful tips on how to improve engagement in your organization.
“Organizations with high employee engagement levels outperform their low engagement counterparts in total shareholder returns and higher annual net income.” — Kenexa.
Your people are undoubtedly your greatest asset. You may have the best product in the world, but if you can’t keep them engaged and motivated — then it counts for very little.
By making efforts to keep your people engaged, you will maximize your human capital investment and witness your efforts being repaid exponentially.
The benefits of an engaged workforce
1. Increase in profitability:
“Increasing employee engagement investments by 10% can increase profits by $2,400 per employee, per year.” — Workplace Research Foundation.
There is a wealth of research to suggest that companies that focus on employee engagement will have an emotionally invested and committed workforce. This tends to result in higher profitability rates and shareholder returns. The more engaged your employees are the more efficient and productive they become. This will help lower operating costs and increase profit margins.
An engaged workforce will be more committed and driven to help your business succeed. By focusing on engagement and investing in your people’s future, you will create a workforce that will generate more income for your business.
2. Improved retention and recruitment rates:
“Replacing employees who leave can cost up to 150% of the departing employee’s salary. Highly engaged organizations have the potential to reduce staff turnover by 87%; the disengaged are four times more likely to leave the organization than the average employee.” — Corporate Leadership Council
Retaining good employees is vital for organizational success. Engaged employees are much less likely to leave, as they will be committed to their work and invested in the success of the company. They will have an increased chance of attracting more qualified people.
Ultimately the more engaged your people are, the higher their productivity and workplace satisfaction will be. This will significantly reduce costs around absences, recruitment, training and time lost for interviews and onboarding.
3. Boost in workplace happiness:
“Happy employees are 12%t more productive than the norm, and 22% more productive than their unhappy peers. Creating a pleasant workplace full of happy people contributes directly to the bottom line.” – Inc.
Engaged employees are happy employees, and happy employees are productive employees. A clear focus on workplace happiness, will help you to unlock everyone’s true potential. On top of this, an engaged and happy workforce can also become loyal advocates for your company. This is evidenced by the Corporate Leadership Council, “67% of engaged employees were happy to advocate their organizations compared to only 3% of the disengaged.”
4. Higher levels of productivity:
“Employees with the highest levels of commitment perform 20% better than employees with lower levels of commitment.” — The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).
Often your most engaged people will be the most dedicated and productive, which will give your bottom line a positive boost. Employees who are engaged with their role and align with the culture are more productive as they are looking beyond personal benefits. Put simply, they will work with the overall success of the organization in mind and performance will increase.
5. More innovation:
“Employee engagement plays a central role in translating additional job resources into innovative work behaviour.” — J.J. Hakanen.
Employee engagement and innovation are closely linked. Disengaged employees will not have the desire to work innovatively and think of new ways to improve your business; whereas an engaged workforce will perform at a higher level, due to increased levels of satisfaction and interest in their role. This often breeds creativity and innovation.
If your people are highly engaged they will be emotionally invested in your business. This can result in them making efforts to share ideas and innovations with you that can lead to the creation of new services and products — thus improving employee profitability.