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Employee engagement relates to the level of an employee’s commitment and connection to an organization, leading to higher levels of productive work behaviors.
Research by Gallup shows that when companies successfully engage their employees, they experience a 240% boost in business outcomes. In addition, engaged employees are 18% more productive, 87% more likely to stay at their jobs, and 1,000% less likely to make mistakes. The bad news is, only 32% of employees are engaged with their jobs.1
So what’s the secret to employee engagement?
Health care benefits – More important than you think
A good benefits package is an important factor in keeping employees engaged. That’s because it keeps your team healthy and happy, and it signals that you care about their well-being. Surveys by Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), Glassdoor, and MetLife all indicate that that health care is the most important benefit for employees, and they consider health care when selecting a new job or deciding to stay in their current job. Some important aspects of a health plan:
- Preventive care – According to the surveys, 60% of employers say offering health insurance has led to higher productivity levels. And according to the CDC, employees who prioritize preventive care — like regular checkups — get more accomplished at work.
- Comprehensive benefits – More than 75% of employees who say they have good health care benefits also report high job satisfaction, and 71% of those workers are loyal to their employers. Conversely, only about 25% of employees who are dissatisfied with their benefits are happy and loyal to their organization.
- Choice – Studies point to a need for employers to review employee health benefits in order to retain staff members, improve employee performance and reduce workplace stress. Additionally, the EBRI found that employees appreciate the opportunity to have some choices in health care. “Choice of health plans is important to workers, and they would like more choices,” said Paul Fronstin, director of EBRI’s Health Research and Education Program, and co-author of the report.
More factors that affect employee engagement
During the course of your career, you’ve probably enjoyed some jobs more than others, even when the work itself was similar. Chances are, the preferred posts satisfied these important factors that contribute to employee engagement:
- Autonomy – People want to feel responsibility. Trust your employees to do their work and they’ll take pride in their results.
- Recognition – While good work is often its own reward, people also want to know that their hard work isn’t going unnoticed. Show that you value your employees through praise and positive feedback.
- Technology – Give employees the right tools to do their job. For example, it’s frustrating for the employee who has a computer that keeps crashing or lacks software that would automate mundane tasks.
- Communication – Give your employees frequent, clear, and actionable feedback. Believe it or not, employees feel prefer getting negative feedback rather than no feedback at all2. Also inform employees about company performance to make them feel that they’re along for the ride and part of the team and its success.
- Growth – Encourage employees’ continued growth and education, and let them know there’s a career path.
- Corporate Culture – Establish a culture of collaboration and sharing. Ask employees what’s working and what’s not, and constantly tweak it.
See our infographic for a summary of how to engage your employees to improve your company’s bottom line.
1 “State of the Global Workplace: Employee Engagement Insights for Business Leaders Worldwide,” Gallup, 2013
2 “Feedback: You Need To Lead It,” Forbes, July 10, 2017