With today’s multi-generational and mobile workforce, business leaders face challenges in building an engaged team culture that will drive their company success. According to a 2015 Deloitte study, 87 percent of organizations consider engagement and culture issues one of their top challenges and only 12 percent of employees feel that their organization is “excellent at effectively driving the desired culture."
Another 2015 survey by Gallup found that only 32 percent of the American workforce is truly engaged, indicating that the rest are either not fully engaged or even actively disengaged. This creates problems for companies because Gallup studies have also found that employee engagement directly affects a company’s bottom line.
With an eye on future success, businesses should look for ways to monitor and measure employee engagement levels.
1) Employee surveys
Surveys are the most commonly used tool for getting feedback on employee feelings and attitudes. The most effective surveys can be filled out and submitted anonymously, which increases participation rates and allows for more honest responses from employees.
Using a third-party administrator (such as Survey Monkey) can also increase employees’ comfort in knowing they can be forthright with their opinions without fear of retaliation.
Managers can get a pulse on their workforce engagement level by asking such survey questions as:
Are you determined to give your best effort at work each day?
Are you satisfied with the culture of your workplace?
Can you see a clear link between your work and the company goals?
A good survey should be able to help you understand employees’ motivations, passions, job satisfaction levels and quality of work relationships. For example, employees are often motivated by professional growth, work/life balance and community involvement in addition to monetary incentives.
2) HR software
While surveying employees once or twice a year is a good place to start, the disadvantage is that they do not provide real-time, ongoing, or holistic feedback. That is why companies are increasingly supplementing periodic surveys with versatile software programs that can gather and track employee engagement year-round.
Modern HR platforms provide tools to collect feedback and measure employee satisfaction, while also allowing you to manage your employees and their data by storing survey results in one place. Performance management software can be crucial for facilitating (and tracking!) more frequent conversations and feedback between managers and employees. This helps ensure everyone is happy, on track and working together on individual, department and company-wide goals.
3) Social media
The rise of social media means that employers have another powerful tool at their fingertips. As an example, companies can measure employees’ sentiment by monitoring Glassdoor ratings and reviews. An internal social media network, like the company intranet that allows employees to post ideas and engage in conversations is also useful. This gives managers opportunities to better understand their teams and get a sense of their morale and the overall company culture.
4) Exit interviews
Asking the right questions via a well-designed engagement survey is important, but asking the tough questions as to why employees, particularly key performers, choose to depart the company can be equally important. This valuable feedback can help identify areas of improvement to help attract and retain the best, fully engaged super star employees. Many experts advocate conducting one written questionnaire with an exit interview during the employee’s final week on the job and, if possible, a follow-up phone interview a month or more after they leave.
5) Take advantage of the employee lifecycle
An employee lifecycle refers to the phases followed by employees during their tenure, which begins with recruiting/acquisition and onboarding, followed by development, performance management, retention and off-boarding. Throughout different stages of the employee experience, you can continuously collect employee feedback and build employee engagement programs to reinforce the value proposition of your company brand and culture.
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