How to Improve Employee Engagement
Employee turnover can cost your business. It can cost you time and money to find a new fit—even more money if you choose a head hunter. Instead of solely focusing on hiring, one solution to reducing the cost of turnover is to hire and keep employees engaged with your business. Not only will they likely stay longer but they also may provide better service.
What do Engaged Employees Look Like?
While engaged employees come in various types, they share some similarities across industries. Many engaged employees:
- Provide feedback and suggestions for how to improve your business
- Seek new opportunities instead of complaining about lack of work
- Inspire clients, partners, and coworkers to feel passionate about your mission
- Refer friends as potential hires to your organization
Linda Lucarelli, a Paychex HR consultant, shared in a podcast that engaged employees feel like, "they're a part of the organization, part of the mission, part of what the company believes in and what they're doing for their clients or customers."
Hiring Engaged Employees
Proper hiring processes are critical to finding employees that will fit well with your organization and become passionate advocates. To find that fit, you need to know what your company's culture is and what it means for prospective employees.
Take some time to think about your organization. How would you describe the culture there? Is it fast paced? Perhaps attention to detail is a key to your business. It's important to take stock of not only what employees need to do in your office, but how they conduct themselves. Do you have flexible hours or telecommuting options? Be sure to ask others in the company the same questions to get a holistic view of your company's culture.
With a better knowledge of your culture, it's easier to create and ask questions regarding company culture to help determine how well a qualified prospect will fit into your company. You'll be able to sell your organization to the people you really want to hire.
Practices to Keep Engaged Employees
Employees tend to be most engaged when they first join a company. But there are ways to help ensure employees stay engaged long after this honeymoon period, such as:
- Communicate your mission or company vision clearly to employees. Be clear about what your company does as well as your values, and why you do what you do.
- Give employees opportunities to learn and grow their skills. Note that as millennials become a larger part of the workforce, they aren't just looking for a job, but a career.
- Provide desirable benefits.
Learning from Employees Who Leave
Even the best companies have employee turnover. While your gut reaction may say the reasons must be about money, that's not always the case. Instead of assuming, take time with an employee before they leave for an exit interview, preferably in a place where they will feel comfortable speaking honestly about the company.
While you will want to ask about compensation package issues, don't stop there. Be sure to ask about working inside the company, especially with their managers. Knowing if there is anything that could have been done to make them stay may help your company keep other employees engaged and remain with your organization.
Employee engagement is a holistic process. It affects hiring as well as managing employees in order to mitigate turnover. No two businesses will have the same engagement processes. Still, this well rounded view can help businesses retain productive, satisfied employees.
If you'd like to learn more about employee engagement, listen to more insights from Linda Lucarelli.