Ask an HR Expert: Does Employee Engagement Truly Have an Impact?

Today’s question has to do with employee engagement.

Hi! This is Katie Stewart and welcome to Ask an HR Expert, where we answer any of your HR questions.  The question is: Does employee engagement, or the lack thereof, truly have an impact on your organization?

I want to start off by giving you a definition of employee engagement. According to Forbes, employee engagement is “the emotional commitment that an employee has to an organization or to the job itself.” Does the employee actually care about the company they are working for or the job they are performing? I found a great definition, I’m not even sure where I got this as I’ve had it for a while, for employee engagement. I’d like to read it to you. I think it really provides an “aha” moment in understanding the impact that employee engagement can have on an organization.

Engagement is when an organization encourages their employees buy-in to their goals, mission, vision and values, in such a way that it will inspire them to want to drive the business forward proactively to generate success.

 

Stop and think about that definition for a second. This means that you’ve created such a culture of engagement that your employees have a buy-in into your vision, mission, values and goals of your organization. Now they take it upon themselves to be proactive and do whatever it takes to drive the business forward toward success. That can have a huge impact on your bottom line. But, you must up the level of engagement in the employees in your workforce.

According to a 2016 Gallup survey, 33% of the workforce is engaged. That is only up about 3% from 2012. We’re not making a huge process there.

The best organizations boast a 70% employee engagement rate. One of the key things attributed to those organizations’ success is effective use of their communications strategy. Seems simple, right? Your employees want to know what is going on in the organization. They want to be kept in the loop. They want to understand how their jobs are linked to the purpose, mission, vision, values and goals of the organization.  The organizations that have a 70% employee engagement enjoyed 17% higher productivity, 20% higher sales and 21% higher profitability.

So, the answer to the question is YES – employee engagement can have a huge positive or negative impact on your organization!

Thank you for listening in. I look forward to answering more questions soon!

 

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