Employee engagement a priority for employers

A lot of employers see employee engagement as a priority, but many have yet to set up a strategy to deal with it.

Research published by YouForce in May found that 79% of respondents rated employee engagement as a high priority, but only 41% had a strategy in place. Of the 41% that do have a strategy, 30% said it improves employee performance and 13% said it improves retention.

The Benefits Research 2013, published by Employee Benefits last month, found engagement has risen in importance this year, with 74% of respondents citing it as the top issue shaping their benefits package. In 2009, 62% of respondents said the same.

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Dilys Robinson, a principal research fellow at the Institute for Employment Studies, said employers value engagement, but are sometimes hesitant to label an engagement programme as such to avoid it being perceived as a short-term event.

“Any good organisation ought to be focusing on engaging its employees,” she said. “Really, engaging employees is part of day-to-day management activity. If organisations are serious about engaging their workforce in the long term, it’s about thinking about what motivates and interests staff and thinking about the messages senior leadership are giving out about employee contribution.”