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Why employee engagement is key to company success

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Invest in employee engagement to increase productivity, work quality, and retain top talent.
employee engagement

Employee engagement is one of the most important indicators in gauging work satisfaction. Employees today want to be involved in their work, enthusiastic about the organization they work for, have a sense of belonging, and be afforded flexibility around schedules and location.

Belonging is at the top of the most recent Global Human Capital Trends survey with 79% of survey respondents saying that fostering a sense of belonging in the workforce was important to their organization’s success in the next 12–18 months, and 93% agreed that a sense of belonging drives organizational performance.

Despite employee engagement being viewed as positive company-wide, the majority of employees are disengaged at work. According to Gallup data, the overall percentage of engaged workers during 2021 is only 39%, up from 36% in 2020. Low engagement can be caused by several factors including lack of recognition by managers, poor company communication and not being aligned with the mission of the company. More than ever, employee engagement is a strategic business objective because engaged employees lead to long-term employee retention, higher levels of productivity, and improved quality of work.

Employee retention

HR leaders are focused on improving employee engagement at their organization and retention is one of the key reasons. Organizations with high engagement reduce both turnover and hiring costs and disengaged employees are a major factor contributing to high employee turnover. Engaging employees is critical for retaining valuable talent and is an important piece of the employee satisfaction puzzle; as disengaged employees are more likely to leave their jobs. According to Forbes, employees who are engaged in their work are more likely to be motivated and remain committed to their employer. This leads to achieving more business goals and helping to drive the organization forward.

Employee productivity

Employees who are engaged at work are more likely to be productive consistently, which leads to more revenue. Companies with a high level of employee engagement are more profitable by a factor of 21%, according to TechJury. The Workplace Research Foundation found that employees who are engaged are 38% more likely to have above-average productivity. But is there a dollar amount that can be associated with an engaged employee?


Significance of employee engagement

When employees are engaged, they are more likely to invest in the work they do which leads to a higher quality of work produced. 

Glassdoor research shows that on average, a 1-point increase in company rating is associated with a 1.3-point increase in customer satisfaction. Employees who are engaged are more involved and work harder while disengaged employees are likely to only do the bare minimum to get by. This holds for organizations across multi-industries including healthcare organizations or factories. Harvard Business Review found that organizations that scored higher in employee engagement reported 48% fewer safety incidents and 41% fewer patient safety incidents.


By investing in employee engagement, your company will be able to increase productivity, work quality, and retain top talent. After a record high engagement level of 38% in 2000, Gallup measured employee engagement during 2021 at 39%.

What is employee engagement?

According to Wikipedia, an engaged employee is “one who is fully absorbed by and enthusiastic about their work and so takes positive action to further the organization’s reputation and interests. An engaged employee has a positive attitude towards the organization and its values. In contrast, a disengaged employee may range from someone doing the bare minimum at work (aka ‘coasting’), up to an employee who is actively damaging the company’s work output and reputation.”

Employee engagement has also become synonymous with concepts like employee satisfaction and the employee experience, which is more about the complete employee journey from hiring to when they leave their job.


Why is employee engagement so important?

For engaged employees who are happy and completely committed to their work, it’s more than just a paycheck – it is the dedication towards their employers and role that makes them passionate about their work, which is often reflected in their outcomes.

If you’ve been wondering why employee engagement is important and how to improve it, start with employee communication.

Employee communication remains the most essential tool to develop strong working relationships among employees and achieve higher productivity rates. Companies that offer clear, precise communication can swiftly build trust among employees.

Often, companies miss the core issues related to employee engagement because executives assume engagement is directly linked to salary and compensation. Most leaders figure employees leave the company due to the lack of promotional opportunities or the lure of better job packages elsewhere.

Connection, communication, and engagement are the three most vital aspects for the growth of an organization, both internally and externally.

However, recent studies contradict this, showing other more important factors directly impact employee engagement. These include:

  1. Employee trust in the company’s leadership,
  2. Employee relationships with the management teams/supervisors, and
  3. Employee pride in being a part of the company.

Of these three factors, it turns out cultivating work relationships through proper, clear, and open communication is the core of improving engagement. 

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How to improve employee engagement

If you’re in HR, you must create an environment that encourages employees to naturally want to be involved in and care deeply about their work. If you want high levels of involvement, motivation, trust, commitment, and empowerment, invest your efforts in improving employee communication.

For large companies, ensuring employees are aligned with the changing priorities of the business is also vital. This is precisely why internal communication is even more essential today.

“Don’t lose sight of the value of communication. It’s not a “nice to have,” it’s a “need to have.” It’s in the bloodstream of every business objective, every element of a mission statement or core value. Be thoughtful and thorough about how you approach it, both editorially and technically and your organization will benefit.”

— Paul Baltes, Director of Communications at Nebraska Medicine

If employees lack relevant, accurate, engaging information and instruction, how can you expect them to do their jobs well (much less be excited about their work)? With proper communication, employees will minimize the time and resources they might otherwise waste.

Communication is also key to setting clear expectations. When employees lack guidelines about what’s expected of them, they won’t know precisely what they need to do, or by when. Communication in this area helps them prioritize tasks and plan their workdays efficiently.

Importance of effective communication in the workplace

Encouraging proper employee communication can build a strong bond between your company and your employees. With proper communication, employees start to identify themselves with the company’s vision, values, and goals. They are then enthusiastic about doing better and becoming more engaged in every aspect of their jobs.

That includes even your remote or deskless workers, or employees who might spend most of their time in the field. This is the population that’s most vulnerable to feeling disconnected from the company. If a large part of your workforce does not come into a central office every day and instead 1) works remotely from home, or 2) spends lots of time out in the field, you need to pay particular attention to what you can do to make sure your communication efforts reach those groups.

Learn the 5 steps you can take at your organization to increase engagement and improve communication satisfaction, regardless of the location of your employees.

Encouraging proper employee communication can build a strong bond between your company and your employees. With proper communication, employees start to identify themselves with the company’s vision, values, and goals. They are then enthusiastic about doing better and becoming more engaged in every aspect of their jobs.

Using communication to improve employee engagement

When you improve employee engagement, you improve performance and therefore increase your value as an HR professional.

Here are some key drivers teams can take a few key steps to ensure better employee engagement and effective communication:

  • Develop clear internal lines of communication and execute the strategy effectively within the company.
  • Enable and promote better organization transparency through communication.
  • Effectively communicate business plans and strategies for every member of the team.
  • Encourage open lines of communication within the company between employees.
  • Recognize the efforts made by employees on various grounds and reward them well.
  • Use a workforce communication platform to integrate your communication channels to target, personalize, and measure your internal communications.

The value of the digital employee experience

Finally, if you want to create effective engagement and communication as an HR professional, you need to show the value of the employee experience.

The employee experience affects everything from employee engagement and productivity to the customer experience. How can you prove to the c-suite that the results will be worth the investment?

We’ve compiled real-world advice from business leaders who transformed their digital employee experience (DEX) by gaining executive buy-in at every step. Learn how they leveraged employee data and built support across the company to achieve their goal. Plus, get a free roadmap you can use to plan your DEX project. 

Download the ebook and get started!

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We are changing our company name, but our platform is still the same—Firstup. We are redefining the digital employee experience to put people first and lift companies up. We make communication solutions that build authentic engagement and create two-way conversation between employees and companies. Our powerful orchestration engine connects every worker, everywhere, on any device with personalized information that helps them do their best work. That’s why 40% of Fortune 100 companies like Amazon, ABInBev, Ford and Pfizer have chosen us to power their frontline, simplify their digital workplace and unlock the potential of their workforces. Get started at

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