SINCE 2007, we have been talking about the concept of employee engagement and why businesses should take note of the engagement levels. With the Best Employer Survey carried out annually since then, with the exception of 2008 due to the peak of the global financial crisis, we accessed the engagement index for several companies and came up with the National Employee Engagement Index. Unfortunately, in 2015, we also withdrew from carrying out the survey due to the chaos in the market caused by the Supreme Court ruling in July of the same year.
Although we did not conduct the actual Best Employer Survey in 2015, we had several companies that participated in the Employee Engagement Survey in their individual capacities. From there we obtained the proxy National Employee Engagement Index which stands at 68,92 percent for 2015, 0,66 percent lower than the previous year (2014) index. This is the second time the national average has dropped in the five year period of comparison; first being in 2012.
A study conducted by Gallup, Inc. in the 1990s, identified employee engagement as the most important factor in helping companies grow. Several, if not all, business performance indicators are significantly influenced by how much employees are effectively engaged in their jobs (workplaces). As such, to improve the performance of the business, the management will need to take note of which areas to work on.
The instrument for measuring the engagement of employees constitutes of eleven (11) dimensions. For instance, the remuneration dimension has always been the lowest of all dimensions throughout the entire period. As such, to raise the engagement of employees — and in turn improve business performance — the employer (management) will need to design remuneration systems that increase employee engagement.
A somewhat “beautiful” concept on employee engagement dimensions is that of correlation (i.e. positive correlation), whereby effective engagement in one dimension means the same or similar engagement level in another.
For instance, most of the companies we surveyed revealed that the commitment and loyalty dimension has a positively significant correlation with the job design dimension. This means that an employee who is committed and loyal to the organisation is also satisfied with the design of his/her job and vice versa. Hence, when implementing solutions to one of these dimensions, the business will be killing “two birds with one stone”.
Important to note is that periodic measurement of employee engagement and acting on the findings can have significant impact on the performance of your business.
Memory Nguwi is the Managing Consultant of Industrial Psychology Consultants (Pvt) Ltd, a management and human resources consulting firm. Phone 04-481946-48/ 481950/ 2900276/ 2900966 or cell number 0772 356 361 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website at www.ipcconsultants.com
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