Engagement Isn't Everything
Engagement Isn't Everything

Most know that diminished engagement has reached a crisis point – only 30 percent of workers are engaged. Eighty nine percent of Glassdoor users are either actively looking for new jobs or would consider better opportunities. And 93 percent of workers that took a new job did so outside their current organizations.

According to analyst Ben Eubanks, our mistake as HR professionals lies in thinking that our leaders are focused on engagement as a unique outcome. But engagement is typically not the end variable. Rather, CEOs want to move the needle on productivity, customer satisfaction, retention, and revenue. The key is to understand how employee engagement impacts all of these things.

For example, per IBM, employees who score highly on the experience index, which is correlated with engagement, gave 40 percentage points more discretionary effort and were therefore far more productive. Per Aon Hewitt, teams of engaged employees saw an additional 25 percent growth in Net Promoter Scores. The Corporate Leadership Council found that engaged employees have the potential to reduce staff turnover up to 87 percent, while Hay Group discovered that engaged workforces lead to 2.5 percent annual revenue growth.

In building a business case to focus on engagement, you must make an effort to use the same language as your leaders. Eubanks suggested that you gather data on these metrics (productivity, customer satisfaction, retention, revenue, etc.) as they currently exist in your business. Plot them against your employee engagement data and note any connections or correlations. What are your strongest conclusions? For instance, is there a team that’s driving the greatest business value that you need to focus on engaging and retaining?