The Triple Bottom Line in business measures the non-financial aspects of your organization, which includes one of your biggest assets: your employees. A successful business requires employees who are successful in both work and in life. Finding effective ways to enhance employee development naturally leads to improved retention rate, employee satisfaction, and overall better productivity throughout the lifetime of their business management careers.
A recent Gallup survey found that 63% of workers in the U.S. are “not engaged” with their work, while 24% say that they feel “actively disengaged.”1 Disengaged staff lower morale and productivity, and can be a liability and cost businesses both money and productivity.
A successful employee engagement plan should include elements focused on workers in order to be successful for the long-term. The plan can include:
- Training programs or continued education
- Equal access to resources
- Health coverage
- Paid time off and retirement plans
This form of employee engagement and benefits can lead to an employee reporting an overall enhanced feeling of well-being and a higher quality of life. A successful employee engagement plan should also take a holistic approach to employee satisfaction.
Why Measure Staff Engagement?
Companies that actively work to create and maintain a positive culture will cultivate increased employee engagement and reap its benefits. These include:
- Better customer outcomes
- Increased worker loyalty
- Better productivity
- Better adherence to standards/best practices
- Higher retention/lowered need to train new staff
- Reduced loss of key employees to competitors
The marketplace is competitive, and workers are less content with just putting in their time and collecting a check. A well-engaged employee goes beyond just “showing up” and takes pride in their work. They are more likely to strive to excel at what they do, and this means better results for the business.
Measuring employee engagement helps business leaders understand what motivates employees, learning ways to develop employees and improve employee retention rates. A successful employee engagement plan can help propel businesses to new heights of success, but it must also be tracked, measured and continually refined for best results. There are some key ways to measure the effectiveness of employee engagement plans as well as improve upon them. Some of the best methods to accomplish this and glean valuable data about staff members include:
- Surveys: Asking employees direct questions regularly is one of the most targeted ways to measure their engagement. The information gleaned should be tracked in terms of metrics like ratings, frequency, duration and virality. Try using these basic questions to help measure staff engagement:
- Do you know what’s expected of you at the workplace?
- Do you feel like your opinions count at work?
- Are you equipped with the items and supplies required for doing a good job?
- Does the company’s purpose and mission show how your job matters to its success?
- Do you feel you’re given the opportunity to excel each day at work?
- Are your fellow employees committed to quality, consistent work?
- Have you received praise or recognition for doing good work within the past week?
- Do you have a best friend among your co-workers?
- Do you feel cared about as a person in the office?
- Has someone at work discussed your progress within the past six months?
- Do you feel encouraged in your development at work by at least one person?
- Have you had opportunities to learn and grow at work in the past year?
- Focus Groups: Having regular discussion groups with staff members can also be very effective in gleaning insights about the employee engagement and satisfaction level at a workplace.
- Social Communities: Tracking employee engagement in terms of social media conversations as well as “offline” social groups can be extremely effective in taking the pulse of employee engagement on an ongoing basis.
- Anecdotal Feedback: Supervisors and management should also be aware of the day to day conversations within the office. An anecdote or offhand conversation can yield valuable insights about the business climate as things arise.
Improving Business with Better Employee Engagement
Enhanced staff engagement starts with listening to employees and letting them know that their input matters. Employers should find out what motivates their staff and work to adjust the workplace to accommodate these needs. Constructive feedback and exit interviews for staff are also valuable in employee development. Lastly, employers should share their long-term vision and let workers know they are a part of it. This is crucial in helping staff feel like they are an integral part of something larger than themselves and the success of the company.
Better productivity and a higher retention rate lead to an improved overall customer experience; however, this doesn’t always just happen on its own. Business owners must be proactive in creating the type of team environment that fosters and cultivates employee development. Measuring an employee engagement plan regularly allows for fine-tuning of the strategy to keep employee satisfaction high and productivity and customer service strong going forward.
- Rielly, Robyn. Five Ways to Improve Employee Engagement Now. Gallup, January 7, 2014. Accessed February 8, 2016. http://www.gallup.com/businessjournal/166667/five-ways-improve-employee-engagement.aspx.