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Why Employee Engagement is the new Employee Satisfaction in 2018

November 15th 2018

Employee Satisfaction – tracking it, improving it, monitoring it – has been a strategic priority for companies over the years, but it’s time to switch focus.

Companies have long recognised that having a happy workforce is a key element to reaping a multitude of benefits, from reducing churn to raising profits. However, it’s no longer about simply knowing that your staff are satisfied in their role, or even with your company. The new crucial factor in determining what does and doesn’t work for your employees – which is a direct reflection of the overall health of your organisation - lies in evaluating employee engagement.

It’s all about engagement

What is employee engagement anyway?

"The emotional commitment the employee has to the organisation and its goals." – Forbes Magazine

Employee engagement surpasses employee satisfaction. Rather than ensuring that employees aren’t dissatisfied with their roles, measuring employee engagement goes the extra mile in determining whether employees are emotionally invested and committed to their roles, and who care about the company they work for as much as they care about their work.

But what’s the difference?

The connection between employee satisfaction and engagement remains a strong one. A satisfied employee is infinitely more likely to be, or become, an engaged one. The key difference hinges on the state of mind, and the differences in behaviour associated with staff members who are all-in for their employers.

For example…

Meet Joe

Joe has been in his job for five years and has been happy in his role. He believes his salary is fair and is satisfied and motivated by his company’s annual bonus incentives, rewarding company performance. Joe likes his colleagues and often attends company events such as charity golf days and Christmas parties. Then 17:30 arrives, Joe clocks out and he immediately forgets about work until tomorrow.

Meet Harry

Harry is engaged with his role within the company he has been working for for two years. Harry appreciates the opportunities he is given to offer feedback on company initiatives, big and small – from new product features to the choice of venue for the next team day. Harry understands the company’s goals and is invested in the eco-friendly values and ethos behind their product line. Harry speaks to customers enthusiastically about both the company and its products, and processes orders that come in late to ensure that customers have exactly what they need, when they need it. When Harry goes home for the day, he passes new job vacancies with the company on to his friends and housemates.

Be more Harry

Every company needs a Harry. In fact, the ultimate goal would be a company filled with employees like Harry. Populating your organisation with engaged employees like this, who passionately advocate for your company, and feel valued and consulted within their roles leads to better business outcomes.

As well as delivering attentive customer service, increasing conversions and referral rates, staff who are as engaged as Harry are fulfilled. Harry won’t be coasting or checking job sites. Harry believes in the company he already works for will work towards delivering its common goals, and will raise awareness of what his employer does, speaking positively about them long after his working day is over.

Increasing employee engagement – the feeling’s mutual

Engagement is a mutually beneficial state for employees and employers alike to strive for, creating optimum conditions for the exchange of ideas, productivity, and growth. So why is it that our latest employee benchmark report statistics reveal that many UK sectors are falling behind and failing to prioritise employee engagement?

Why Employee Engagement is the new Employee Satisfaction in 2018

Download the full report here

Over 12 months, data collected between June 2017 and June 2018 shows that the sectors with the lowest employee engagement ratings were:

  • Utilities – employee engagement rating 7.7 (out of 10)
  • Restaurants – employee engagement rating 7.8
  • Public Sector – employee engagement rating of 8.0

Improving employee engagement within an organisation is never a quick fix – what promotes engagement in one company may fall completely flat in another.

Developing and implementing an effective staff engagement strategy using tailored professional employee engagement research is the key strategy tool for success. This enables employees to confidently voice their thoughts and feelings about engagement in their workplace and provides a baseline of staff’s current perceptions as a benchmark to measure change.

How to measure employee engagement

The term ‘engagement’ is subjective and complex in itself and has different meanings for different people. Perhaps not surprisingly, the process of measuring employee engagement is equally so. It encompasses a range of feelings and behaviours – for example, the commitment a worker feels to their company; their willingness to go above and beyond to do their job effectively. Because of this, agreeing upon a definition and developing questions which will yield insightful, interpretable data about engagement is often more difficult than it seems.

The good news is that help is at hand. As a trusted market research agency with over 30 years’ experience in conducting employee research, a key area of our work here at TTi Global has been developing next-generation employee survey models. This is how we devised our industry-leading Employee Engagement Quality Analysis framework. This first-of-its-kind research model explores the employee experience in the round, asking questions about different elements that make up an organisation – including infrastructure, culture, people, environment. All this information is taken into account when we calculate employee engagement.

What does EEQA do?

  • Accurate engagement measurement – Evaluates all areas contributing to ‘employee engagement’ including employee satisfaction, working conditions, peer and manager relationships, personal progression and recognition and growth opportunities, giving a true picture of engagement within an organisation.  
  • Actionable data to raise engagement – Unlocks employees’ expectations (what they want) and perceptions (what they actually receive) identifying gaps and action required to drive engagement.   
  • Scalable employee research platform – Scalable solution for indexing enterprise employee engagement encompassing proven research methods, including customised online surveys, employee pulse surveys and one-to-one and team focus groups, ensuring a flow of relevant data.    
  • Benchmarks engagement - Analyses organisation’s employee engagement and benchmarks with competitor’s engagement performance, picking out strengths and weaknesses of engagement strategy and where attention is needed to build engagement, so staff consistently give their best, helping gain and maintain competitive advantage.    
  • Drives customer satisfaction - Identifies efficiencies and improvements across all business areas and workflows and gauges how ‘customer focussed’ employees are, helping build better customer interactions and stronger service culture, in turn raising customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Ready to improve your employee engagement? 

To find out more about how our employee engagement research can improve your company performance get in touch today