Employee engagement has become critical for organizations seeking to improve their overall performance. Studies have shown a strong correlation between engaged employees and improved productivity, lower absenteeism rates, and employee retention. Disengaged employees, on the other hand, can lead to reduced productivity and increased turnover rates. In fact, research from Gallup and Towers Watson found that organizations with engaged employees have 21% higher profitability and 47% higher total shareholder return than those with disengaged employees. In this post, we'll discuss how to use employee engagement data to drive positive change and provide recommendations, including a notable case study.
What is Employee Engagement?
Employee engagement refers to employees' emotional connection to their work and their employer. Engaged employees are passionate about their work, feel valued by their employer, and are willing to go above and beyond to help their organization succeed. On the other hand, disengaged employees are emotionally disconnected from their work and their employer, leading to a lack of motivation and commitment.
Measuring Employee Engagement
Measuring employee engagement is critical to identify areas where improvement is needed. Several tools are available to measure engagement, including employee engagement surveys, focus groups, and interviews. These tools can identify areas where employees have engaged and the areas where improvement is needed.
Analyzing the Data
Once you've collected engagement data, you must identify trends and patterns. You can pinpoint the areas where employees are engaged and those where improvements are necessary through this analysis. Identifying any demographic trends in the data, such as differences in engagement levels between departments or employee tenure, is also important. (Learn more: How to Conduct and Analyze Employee Engagement Surveys)
Using the Data to Drive Change
Once you've identified areas where improvements are needed, it's time to take action. There are several steps you can take to use employee engagement data to drive positive change within your organization:
- Develop a Plan: Based on your analysis, develop a plan to address areas where improvements are needed. This could include changes to organizational culture, management practices, or employee benefits.
- Communicate with Employees: Communication is critical when implementing changes. Communicate with employees about your changes and why they're important.
- Implement Changes: Implement changes in a phased approach to ensure they're effective and to minimize any negative impacts.
- Measure Progress: Continuously measure employee engagement to determine the effectiveness of your changes. Use this data to make additional adjustments as needed.
Benefits of Using Employee Engagement Data
Using employee engagement data to drive company success has several benefits, including:
- Increased Productivity: Engaged employees are more productive, increasing efficiency and overall productivity.
- Higher Retention Rates: Engaged employees are more likely to stay with their current employer, leading to lower turnover rates and decreased recruitment costs.
- Improved Morale: Engaged employees are happier and more satisfied with their work, leading to improved morale and overall job satisfaction.
One notable case study of using employee engagement data to drive organizational change and improve performance is the experience of the Marriott hotel chain. In the early 2000s, Marriott conducted an extensive study of employee engagement across its global organization. They found that employee engagement was unevenly distributed across different locations and departments, and that some areas of the organization had much lower levels of engagement than others.
Based on this data, Marriott developed a comprehensive strategy to improve employee engagement across the organization. The strategy included changes to management practices, employee training programs, and employee benefits & work-life balance improvements. Marriott also implemented a program to regularly survey employees and gather feedback on their engagement levels.
The results of these efforts were impressive. Over the next several years, Marriott saw a significant increase in employee engagement across the organization. They also saw improvements in key performance metrics, including customer satisfaction, employee retention, and profitability. By using employee engagement data to drive organizational change, Marriott improved performance and achieved long-term success.
Employee engagement is critical to organizational performance. Measuring employee engagement can help you identify areas where improvements are needed and take action to drive positive change. By developing a plan, communicating with employees, implementing changes, and measuring progress, you can use employee engagement data to drive positive change within your organization. The scientific evidence supports the importance of employee engagement, so start measuring and taking action to improve engagement in your organization today!
- Brown, D. (2011). The impact of employee engagement on key business success metrics. People Metrics.
- Hinkin, T. R., & Tracey, J. B. (2008). The cost of turnover: Putting a price tag on the learning curve. Cornell Hotel and Restaurant Administration Quarterly, 49(3), 282-295.