Saturday, November 15, 2014

Employee Engagement

In today's cut throat competition scenario, employee turnover is a very delicate issue. Attrition rates are increasing. Most employees tend to leave a company due to disengagement. Disengagement at work is considered a costly and  highly frustrating problem. Treating employees as human and not experimental robots makes reducing the problem a little simpler. In order to counter this issue engagement has become a major buzzword across all corporates. According to a survey recently taken by Deloitte, Seventy-eight percent of leaders say it is both an urgent and important priority. Employee engagement is a measure of an employee’s positive attitude towards his/her work and commitment to remain attached to the organisation for a long period of time. 
Engaged employees care about the future of a company and act as their brand ambassadors as well as endorse the brand as an Employer of choice. All core business measures – profitability, productivity, customer satisfaction, quality, retention and sales are significantly higher at companies with a concentration of engaged employees.  
Practitioners and academicians have argued that an engaged workforce create a competitive advantage to any company. In short, it can be said that Engagement is the new currency of the current economy.

It is said that if a company wants to improve their engagement, they must not think of complicated strategies but instead make an effort to create a dialogue with and among their employees. According to Michael Papay and Alexandre Santille the following four strategies turn real time feedback into real time employee engagement:

1.     Focus On What Matters Most
Organisational alignment occurs when top level management focuses their employee’s energy on the most important issues on hand. Solutions for issues come from the most unexpected source at times!

2.     Use Open Ended Questions
      Excessive surveying of employees leads to dehumanizing and increases   further drag on the intentions of improving employee engagement. So once a basic survey has been carried out for the employees it would more feasible to send out open ended questions instead of testing a pre-existing set of solution.  It is better to make the experience of a survey more conversational so that there is a two way communication.

3.     Offer Anonymity and Transparency
Employees should be free to express what they think. It is important for the employer to create an environment for the employees where they feel secure and keep the information exchange flowing to all so that everyone adds on.

4.     Take Action
Before doing anything else it is imperative to put away the ego and pride, be polite and acknowledge people.

The key to employee engagement is to keep the employees involved and motivated. Employee engagement if utilized correctly could be a very powerful tool. It not only has the potential to significantly affect employee retention, productivity and loyalty but also is an essential link to customer satisfaction, company reputation and overall stakeholder value. 
                                                                                             - Sarthak Daing