Companies that have engaged employees considerably outperform competitors whose employees are not engaged. Measuring employees’ engagement is challenging because it is based largely on employee perception, which is subjective.
In addition, there is no hard and fast definition of employee engagement. As a result, there are no standard analytic tools used for measurement purposes.
While surveys are the most common method used to evaluate engagement, there are six steps to take in order for their results to provide meaningful data.
1. Evaluate managers/employee relationships.
If you are being treated unfairly in a relationship, you will likely be unsatisfied, and therefore, disengaged. Your employees are no different. If they feel they are not being treated well by their managers, are undervalued, or are always getting the short end of the stick, there is a high probability that they are not going to be engaged. A key indicator to employees’ engagement, then, is to determine how fairly your employees perceive the way they are treated.
2.Analyze communication levels.
Engaged employees are employees who believe that the lines of communication between them and their superiors are open. Not only do they expect managers to communicate a clear vision for the company, but they also expect to have the ability to communicate their thoughts with managers and that their input will, at the very least, be considered.
If your employees believe there is an open door policy when it comes to communication, they are more likely to be engaged than those who believe their voices are never heard.
3. Take stock of benefits.
These factors include satisfactory benefits, compensation, working conditions, and company pride. While these factors aren’t considered motivators, their absence is associated with dissatisfaction. Therefore, the more content employees are with these factors, the better the chance they are going to be engaged.
Do your employees view their working conditions positively or is there much to be desired? Do they trust in the abilities of their managers? Do they feel a sense of pride in working for your company and have a strong commitment? Because engagement is linked to emotional attachment, the answers to these questions provide critical pieces of information necessary for assessing employees’ engagement.
4. Don’t underestimate the importance of empowerment.
A little empowerment goes a long way. If your employees receive praise from their superiors, they likely will feel inspired and have a desire to do their jobs well. Similarly, they will feel empowered if they believe there are sufficient opportunities for growth and advancement. Empowered employees are likely to be engaged employees.
5. Review rational factors.
Beyond the emotional factors that drive engagement, there are several rational factors as well. Rational factors supersede emotional ties to your company and focus on more pragmatic issues, such as whether employees believe staying with their current supervisor represents the best way to advance their careers, or if staying with their group gives them the best opportunity to develop skills.
6. Study employee choices.
Not every person possesses a high degree of self awareness. Therefore, if employees are asked questions about how they feel, there is no guarantee they will have the ability to answer accurately. In addition to conducting strategic surveys, one of the best ways to measure how engaged employees are is to analyze their values.
You can do this by watching and studying the choices they make on a day-to-day basis and see what consistent decisions they are making. Engagement levels can be more accurately assessed by taking the time to study important clues these decisions provide.
Considering employees’ disengagement is a primary cause of company failure, it is critical you use effective measurement methods. Relying on simple satisfaction surveys is not enough. In order to most accurately determine how your employees feel, you must include questions that cover key factors as well as analyze their daily choices. This will enable you to best understand your employees and make any necessary adjustments to increase their level of engagement and, ultimately, the overall success of your company.