The power of employee engagement has been well published. Every business owner knows that engaged employees are more productive, more innovative, and create a satisfied workplace. But how does a business measure whether or not their employees are engaged? Measuring employee engagement takes more than just administering an annual survey, it takes some introspection. Use these tips to develop a plan to measure employee engagement at your workplace.
One of the more straightforward and simple ways to measure employee engagement is to simply ask your employees. Gallup polls have been measuring employee engagement for decades using twelve questions that ask employees to rank their employer from a scale of one to five. With topics ranging from whether employees' believe their opinion counts or whether they have a best friend at work, these simple polls can provide insight into the underlying thoughts employees have about their job and their importance to the company. A simple annual survey is an easy way to measure employee engagement and find places to increase engagement throughout the year.
Investigate Your Employees' Motivations
Employee engagement is one of the rare factors in business that doesn't focus on company growth or productivity. While that's a by-product of an engaged workforce, focusing on employee engagement means setting aside business wants and focusing on employee needs. What motivates your workforce? If your workforce is mainly part-time staff or family-oriented, flexibility may be a large motivation. Focusing on initiatives that increase scheduling flexibility and telecommuting options can give a big boost to your employee engagement by meeting their personal needs. Take a candid look at what motivates your employees and how you can meet those needs within the framework of your business.
Involve Your Engaged Employees
You have engaged employees within your ranks right now. Even if employee engagement is down, there are some employees who love coming into work and doing their job. If you want to measure employee engagement, start with employees who are already engaged. Ask managers to nominate their most engaged employees and ask those employees what makes them so motivated to work for your company. It may be as simple as a great boss or fun co-workers but by understanding where your currently engaged employees find happiness and contentment, you can start formulating a plan to engage other workers too.
Analyze Internal Parameters
While employee engagement polls provide insight into the employee mindset, they don't really paint a complete picture of how to engage more employees. An employee who's having a bad or great week while taking the poll can skew results and lead to employers focusing on the wrong factors to engage employees.
Rather than relying fully on employee engagement results, it's important for employers to develop their own engagement parameters. Think about what engagement means to your business and start tracking those things. For example, engaged employees are more likely to communicate with customers and work assignments outside of normal working hours. Track employee discretionary effort to get a glimpse into those engaged employees. Developing internal parameters to measure gives you extra insight into employee and department engagement for a better understanding of engagement within your company.
Increasing employee engagement is becoming a more pressing issue for small and large businesses alike. With employees switching jobs more than ever, the only way to attract and retain the best and the brightest is to offer not only a great job but a great work environment. Start creating a plan to measure and improve employee engagement in your workplace today.