A recent report published by Gallup indicates only 33% of all employed Americans are engaged in their work.1 Huffington Post reports, that if only 1/3 of U.S. employees are engaged then "...the rest of our employees - 70 percent - aren't engaged and aren't reaching their full potential. That disengagement rate - which is even higher globally - costs U.S. companies between $450 and $550 billion each year."2
Addressing the issue, however, does require an investment from the company both in time and money, so it's no wonder you'll want to feel confident that the investment is a wise one. If you're dubious about employee engagement ROI, read on to learn about the undeniable benefits of employee engagement.
1. It's Good For the Company
Having a more engaged workforce benefits a company on a great many levels. Engaged employees show up for work and to get more work done. Better employee engagement has been shown to result in greater productivity, less absenteeism, and lower turnover rates.
Aon Hewitt agrees in their study of employers with engagement levels at or above 65%, who apparently beat industry averages in revenue growth, profit margins, and shareholder returns.
Engagement also affects quality. Highly engaged business units experience fewer quality defects and reduce inventory shrinkage.
By definition, engaged employees are more interested and passionate about their work. This often results in greater innovation as these individuals feel more connected to the organization and strive to bring good ideas and improvements forward.
Perhaps most significantly, however, is the impact that engagement can have on the bottom line. Companies with a highly engaged workforce are 21% more profitable than companies with less engaged employees.1 In publicly traded companies, similar results are found in comparing earnings per share.
A 4-year Best Companies Group study revealed that organizations named Best Places to Work reduced voluntary turnover by 21%.3 The employers we recognize as Best Places to Work have an average employee engagement level of 92%.
It's Good For Customers
A company's relationship with its customers is among its most valuable assets. It’s something that must be nurtured and protected. Engaged employees tend to engender greater customer loyalty.
A highly engaged individual is more likely to provide outstanding customer service and deliver a more positive experience. They're more likely to pay attention to the details that will help ensure that the customer is satisfied with the product or service they received. Thanks to such superior service, your customers are more likely to return next time.
Engaged employees make for excellent brand ambassadors. They're enthusiastic about your company's offerings and promote them to your customers and others.
By being more focused on satisfying your customers and ensuring that they are thoroughly pleased with every transaction, an engaged employee helps to make your company more customer-centric. Organizations with engaged employees report far better customer retention rates.
It's Better for the Employee
It may seem self-evident that improving employee engagement is beneficial to the employee. Nevertheless, it bears a closer look to see just how making an employee engagement investment will serve the individual.
Greater happiness: employee engagement and happiness is not the same thing, although they are linked. It's quite possible for someone to be happy yet not engaged in his or her work. Nevertheless, those who are fully engaged are far more likely to also be happy.
Improved health: studies have shown that individuals who are fully engaged in their work experience less stress and have improved blood pressure and cholesterol readings. On the other hand, disengaged employees are more likely to be diagnosed with depression.
Safety: engaged employees tend to be more aware of their surroundings and of the safety regulations. They are more likely to be diligent about safety procedures designed to keep them and their coworkers safe. In fact, business units with more highly engaged workers saw 70% fewer incidents than those with less engaged workers*.
A better life away from work: The things that happen and the emotions that are felt at work often bleed into life at home. So, if an individual is disengaged at work, he or she is more likely to become disengaged at home also.
With all of these clear benefits for the employees, the customers, and the company, you can now understand why making an employee engagement investment is well worth it.
1 State of the American Workplace. Gallup. Retrieved from http://www.gallup.com/services/178514/state-american-workplace.aspx
2 Boyce, C. (2014). Engaged Employees: Your Company’s No. 1 Competitive Advantage. Retrieved from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/chris-boyce/engaged-employees-your-co_b_6344230.html
3 Aon Hewitt. (2018). Best Employers Have Better Business Performance. Retrieved from http://www.aon.com/human-capital-consulting/best-employers/best-employers-better-performance.jsp
4 Dineen, B. and D. Allen. (2015). Third Party Employment Branding: Human Capital Inflows and Outflows Following “Best Places to Work” Certifications. Retrieved from https://journals.aom.org/doi/abs/10.5465/amj.2013.1091