We won’t go over it again, because it’s an established fact: employee engagement is good for business. High profits and productivity, lower turnover and absenteeism – the list goes on.
For managers and HR professionals, the question is how to improve employee engagement. That means you need to know what drives it – not generally, but in your organisation and each individual team specifically.
Ask someone how to drive engagement, and you’ll get a wide range of answers. Some studies suggest it’s about feeling “valued and involved”, but others point to the “manager-employee relationship”. The reality is, there’s a lot of things that drive engagement – but that’s not much help if you’re trying to build a practical strategy.
If you’re a HR manager with a limited budget, needing to know whether to prioritise line manager training or a rewards programme, then it’s crucial to understand what’s driving engagement more than anything else.
It’s important, but not surprising, to know that different industries have different drivers – and that information is crucial in learning how to boost engagement:
In our latest benchmarking data, we saw the biggest driver of engagement in Insurance was ‘experience’ – which is about being respected, recognised and fairly rewarded.
With that in mind, leaders know to look at pay, perks, praise, and whatever else comes out of deeper analysis in this area. And since your focus is already narrowed, that’s less of a daunting task if you’re dealing with a lot of data.
For Telecommunications, the main driver was ‘listening’ – which means having opportunities to give genuine feedback and employees feeling like their voice is heard.
Again, this narrows down any potential initiatives. It could lead to making employee surveys a bigger feature in the top team’s strategy planning, and making sure their feedback is responded to in a transparent, timely manner.
In the Legal Services, ‘purpose’ is the biggest engagement driver – this is about the organisation setting goals that are important, meaningful, and help to keep the team motivated.
Something less tangible like ‘purpose’ might not seem like a priority, but if it’s the biggest driver then it deserves a focus. Managers in this situation might look at reaffirming their company’s mission, goals, and values in a visible way.
Benchmarking is a useful way to add context. But it can be misleading, or just an excuse to pat yourself on the back and say “that’s good enough” when you exceed the mark. By all means, use benchmarking as supporting data – especially if you’re looking at different industries – but you’ll need to go further for real results.
There’s a lot of questions to ask about employee engagement – like how and why should you try and measure it? What’s the benefit of asking a team member engagement questions? Measuring engagement is one thing, but you should be using your employee engagement platform for more than that.
The whole point of an employee engagement survey should be to improve engagement, by learning what actions you can take to boost it. That means learning what drives it on an organisational and team-based level.
Our employee engagement platform is a tool for change. We help you gather better feedback, for better insights. Then, we help you turn them into manager actions – to make a real impact on your organisation.
We ask a mix of closed and open ended engagement questions, use advanced Smart Reader tech to analyse them, and – most importantly – tell you how much different aspects of the employee experience drive engagement. This means identifying your priority areas is easy.
Find out more, by booking a demo: