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Reasons for poor employee engagement

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With 67% of the global workforce claiming to be disengaged there clearly is an issue that needs addressing with immediate effect. What are these specific issues, and how can they be practically addressed?

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Results from Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace report, states that 85% of global workforces are not engaged and could be actively disengaged.

This could result in an approximate loss of $7 trillion in productivity. The report indicates that 18% are actively disengaged and 67% are “not engaged” at all. With 67% representing the majority of the workforce it shows that although they are present and appear to be working, they are indifferent to it at the same time, they don’t see work as a place they want to actively be or enjoy.

A recent report* has included the top five reasons why employees become disengaged. By gathering and curating several major sources of research over a number of years from bodies such as CIPD, WERS, Investors in People (IIP), and Gallup, the report has highlighted the most frequently cited drivers of employee engagement, these were:

  • Positive motivation
    This was one of the largest drivers of employee engagement – but also one of the most expansive. While employees may be content to do what is required of them, they will be more willing to emotionally invest in their work and consequently increase productivity if they get recognition and reward for good performance. Other positive motivation factors include access to professional and personal development and tailored benefits packages.
  • Innovation
    While employees can be one of one of the best sources for new ideas, the analysis reveals that less than half of managers actively seek out employee suggestions – or give feedback. The clear message to employers is to encourage staff to share their ideas and encourage innovation, but also to ensure that these suggestions are responded to in a timely manner.
  • Employee well-being
    Today’s employees want to feel valued not only in terms of their contribution to the business but also that their employer is taking their well-being into account and seeing them as more than just a worker. As an employer, this can be as simple as supporting healthy lifestyles by encouraging employees to take their lunch breaks and holidays through to more formal support for health problems and personal issues.
  • Communication and relationships with management
    The world of work is changing; hot desking, remote, part-time and flexible working is challenging the way that employees and employers communicate and it is all too easy for employees to feel isolated or cut off from the business for which they work. Employers could explore whether their existing communication methods are working or if additional channels harnessing new technology such as employee apps could be key to better understanding and a faster flow of information.
  • Development and control
    Job satisfaction is clearly linked with the amount of control employees feel they have over their own destiny in terms of both the scope of their role – and the opportunities for personal and professional development. The aggregated research found that less than half of employees felt that they had enough opportunities for development.

*The Workvine report is available on request.

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