Employee engagement

  • Performance & Appraisals
Two employees shaking hands before a meeting

Peter Done, Group Managing Director and Founder

(Last updated )

Read our article: 'Employee engagement: An important marker for business success'. Contact us today for more information about our Employment Law, Health & Safety, and HR services.

Having engaged workers benefits companies in a variety of ways.

Your HR team can take ownership of employee engagement initiatives and help you integrate an effective employee engagement strategy into your management practice.

This will increase employee engagement and have a favourable impact on staff retention and the company's financial performance.

Customer engagement and revenue may drop drastically if your employees are not engaged to the best of their ability.

In this guide, we will define employee engagement and its different levels, how to measure it, and offer advice on how to implement a successful strategy for it.

What is employee engagement?

The level of employee engagement indicates how good employees feel about their job, how devoted they are to the business, and how much discretionary effort they put into their tasks.

Employee engagement and employee satisfaction are not the same. The latter is defined as how happy or content your employees are with their job and the impact it has in their lives.

Why is employee engagement important?

Employee engagement is important because it drives performance. Companies with an engaged workforce do better than their competitors.

An engaged employee looks at the entire organisation and understands their role, where they fit in, and how they can contribute.

This leads to better decision-making and even fewer safety incidents in the workplace.

Human resources managers find employee engagement enticing because of the immediate benefits it has on employee motivation, employee retention, recruitment, job satisfaction, and happiness.

How to measure employee engagement

There are several ways for measuring employee engagement. Many employers prefer conducting employee engagement surveys for this.

Employee surveys provide a realistic view of organisational identification, which is the employee's tendency to identify with your business.

The engagement survey is often undertaken alongside qualitative techniques like focus groups. Since different techniques have different advantages, a mixed approach is preferable.

Below are a few tips to keep in mind when conducting employee engagement surveys. These tips can help you choose engagement metrics that are precise and specific:

  • Keep your questions simple: This will allow your employees to give clearer responses and make data analysis much easier. 
  • Ask at least one open-ended question on potential areas for improvement: Having this in the employee engagement survey allows your employees to voice their concerns about their work.
  • Ask more, say less: The main point of an employee engagement survey is to get a clear understanding of how employees feel about the company. Keep long questions at a minimum. 
  • Try to organise your responses on a five-point scale: Many questions on your survey should be responded to on a "Strongly agree - Strongly disagree" scale. Make sure you use the same scale throughout the survey.

Levels of employee engagement

Employees are divided into three levels according to how they perceive their workplace. It’s important to understand what level your team is playing at. You can then seek to increase their engagement and offer the appropriate amount of help.

  • Actively-engaged employees: these employees have a positive emotional connection with your company and speak highly of the business to family and friends.
  • Not-engaged employees: these employees carry out their responsibilities but are less passionate about the company. A push from senior leaders can get them actively engaged and improve their job satisfaction.
  • Actively-Disengaged employees: these employees are disconnected from their workplace and have a negative view of the company culture. Their expectations need to be realigned with their managers' to see any improvements.

How to improve employee engagement

Improving employee engagement requires a diverse strategy fueled by constructive feedback and constant development.

The following are some of the most significant factors that you should consider about your employees:

  • Provide them with the information they need to do their job well.
  • Recognise their contributions to organisational success.
  • Develop a strong work relationship with them based on mutual respect. 
  • Assure them that future business outcomes will be desirable.
  • Invest in their personal growth.
  • Make them confident that senior leaders can lead the business to future success.
  • Value them as your most important resource for business success.
  • Demonstrate integrity across the company culture.
  • Use engagement initiatives to motivate employees on a regular basis.

Employee engagement strategy

Employee engagement strategies are about fostering a culture in which employee engagement is likely to thrive.

Simply, an employee engagement strategy means increasing the possibility that employees will have a good emotional connection with your company.

Depending on the results of your employee engagement survey, your company will need to focus on a few specific factors.

A successful employee engagement strategy will:

  • Increase productivity.
  • Improve employees' wellbeing.
  • Improve job satisfaction.
  • Make employees happier.
  • Improve employee retention.
  • Reduce employee turnover.
  • Improve customer loyalty.

A good employee engagement strategy includes information on how to maintain engagement efforts over time.

Keep in mind that the success of the strategy ultimately rests on your company's direct supervisors.

The following are some examples of useful employee engagement strategies which many organisations may find useful for their business:

Recognise achievements

Taking time to recognise high-performing employees drives employee engagement and contributes to the organisation's success.

A great way to do this is to mention them in your employee engagement platform, which all of your employees are using.

Encourage employee feedback

Your employees have firsthand knowledge of what's working and what's not.

Gathering employee feedback serves more purposes than just providing an overview of how your business is doing.

It can engage employees in measuring your business metrics and help in spotting possible issues before they arise.

Listen to employees

Your employees want their opinions to be heard just as much as your customers do. Ignoring their opinions might result in employee disengagement.

Building meaningful relationships and hearing employee voices can be more than just enlightening.

Effective listening is critical in developing open and trustworthy relationships between employees, leaders and managers, as well as in making employees feel valued.

Sharing ideas in the workplace

Fostering strong internal communications and sharing ideas in the workplace is an effective employee engagement strategy that helps employees succeed in their daily tasks.

Capturing the thoughts, insights, and suggestions of other team members may lead to improvements that will increase customer benefit, connect employees, and increase employee morale.

Emphasise respect in the workplace

Respect ensures that each individual employee feels equal and that all ideas are respected. This culture will help employees develop both personally and professionally.

Since respect can drive employee engagement, improve employee experience, and reduce stress, it can help you boost the company's bottom line.

Foster transparency in the workplace

Transparency in business matters from the onboarding process and helps the organisation succeed because it fosters a culture built on honesty, trust and open communications.

Transparency implies that you are fostering transparent communication, cooperation, and a better knowledge of other employees as well as other parts of the business.

This allows you to hire engaged employees and develop managers who are emotionally involved in the organisation's mission and vision.

Get expert advice on employee engagement

Employers should focus on employee engagement to keep employees on board for a longer period of time. This boosts staff retention and reduces employee turnover costs.

Highly engaged employees perform better in the workplace, which results in increased customer satisfaction, loyalty, and engagement.

Employees that are disengaged can have a significant negative impact on customer experience, productivity, and revenue.

Peninsula offers 24/7 HR advice on employee engagement which is available 365 days a year. We take care of everything when you work with our HR experts.

Want to find out more? Contact us on 0800 029 4383 and book a free consultation with one of our HR consultants.

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