Quantum Workplace’s annual Employee Engagement Trends Report was recently released. The report surveyed 32,000 individuals on their workplace experiences and while employers had reported strong year-over-year growth in employee engagement in 2020, engagement has declined in 2021.
According to an analysis of the report by The Business Journals, “The percentage of employees defined as engaged with their jobs dropped from 81% in January 2021 to 74% in July 2021. Many of the indicators that looked so promising in 2020, such as communication and trust in leadership, were suddenly moving in the wrong direction.”
The decision by many companies to begin bringing employees back to the workplace, reducing the flexibility employees requested to be maintained moving forward. This disconnect can be frustrating for employees, decreasing confidence and trust.
Another interesting shift in responses was related to confidence in finding another job- in the first quarter of 2021, 38% of respondents were confident compared to 52% by the second quarter.
Professional growth is critical to retaining talent, “Without the opportunity for growth, employees can feel stagnant and unwilling to perform more than the bare minimum. Employees may search for other employers in this situation, negatively affecting retention rates.”
The Business Journals noted that the report found that, “Trust in leadership is down. Employees are feeling less valued and recognized. More are confident they could land a job that’s just as good and pays the same or higher. All of those trends are happening during an unprecedented labor market that has more employers seeking to poach talent.”
More time and resources are being invested in recruitment to combat the Great Resignation, however, employers must focus on engaging employees in order to retain them, otherwise, the vicious cycle will only continue.
Our team shares five tips for engaging employees:
- Survey them. Surveys can be serious or fun. Asking employees for their input and feedback is important to ensure they feel seen and valued.
- Develop a plan for addressing change. Employers can’t survey employees then have no plan for action to implement the changes requested. A committee comprised of a mix of senior leadership and employees at multiple levels is important to creating an inclusive culture and building trust and confidence.
- Communicate. Policies and procedures are changing constantly to adjust to the ongoing pandemic. Don’t assume employees understand the changes. Be clear when explaining the changes and expectations, and open the door for questions and concerns. This will create a two-way line of communication and confidence in leadership.
- Benefits and perks. As companies find new ways to attract talent, existing team members rarely receive the same benefits and perks being offered to new employees which will cause angst and animosity. Employers need to find ways to reward existing employers and equitably distribute new benefits so employees feel recognized for their hard work.
- Professional development. Work with employees to create professional development plans so they have goals to work towards and see opportunities for advancement.
Contact us today to learn more about our modern approach to performance management and development that actually improves the manager and employee relationship. Don’t just take our word for it, see what our Customers have to say.