Employee Engagement in HR | Definition, Roles & Strategies
It is no secret that unsatisfied employees are more likely to leave their jobs. To retain top talent, it is important for HR to keep employees engaged. Optimal employee engagement is also a huge part of employee satisfaction.
HR deals with talent management, enforcing labor laws, and much more. Facilitating employee engagement is also a primary function of HR.
What is Employee Engagement?
Employee engagement can be defined as a workplace method devised that takes into consideration the emotional attachment an employee has to their job duties, their designation, co-workers, and their company in general.
In simpler terms, it can be described as the level of enthusiasm or the level of dedication an employee has towards their job and the organization they work for.
What is The HR Role in Employee Engagement?
All departments in an organization can take measures to improve employee engagement but it is the human resource department that is extremely vital for a successful employee engagement.
Employee engagement has close relations to employee satisfaction, employee retention, and productivity.
Following are the key HR roles in employee engagement:
- Employee onboarding programs
- HR statistics
- Exit-interview analysis
- Employee acknowledgement and recognition
- Staff communication
- Onboarding employees
- Maintaining in-organization blogs and forums
1. Onboarding programs to Inspire employees
Employees should feel motivated and inspired by their HR managers. HR can contribute a lot to making employees inspired by empowering their managers and providing them with the tools they need to inspire and motivate.
It is not even a labor-intensive process either. HR can lead an onboarding program for new managerial candidates and give them the resources that will equip them to inspire employees.
The HR can include steps for active listening, delegating tasks, giving personal gratitude for a job well done, providing constructive criticism, and more.
2. HR statistics
There is a huge relationship between employee engagement and employee retention, absenteeism, and other factors.
These statistics and numbers are collected by the HR department from time to time. It is the role of HR to continually analyze and report these statistics and underlying employee engagement trends to the higher management. These reports will later allow the organization to make strategies to improve employee engagement if needed.
3. Exit interview analysis
While the staff is departing, HR is often responsible for conducting exit interviews. These exit interviews play an important role in pointing out the dissatisfaction quotient and why the employee is leaving.
A staff member who is departing can talk openly about their experience in the organization without fear of repercussions. HR can source honest, unbiased feedback that can be used to measure employee engagement and ways to improve it.
4. Employee acknowledgment and recognition
It is imperative for companies to recognize good work and routinely reward employees for their valuable contributions. This may include thanking staff members publicly or going the extra mile by presenting them with corporate gifts to acknowledge their achievements. Recognition is instrumental in sustaining an engaged workforce.
5. Staff communication
HR officials play an important role in communicating with the staff. If the employees fail to be engaged in genuine and open conversation, they are most likely to be disengaged.
So there needs to be open, honest, and ongoing two-way conversation between the staff and management. The HR officials are the ones who should bridge the gap between these two.
6. Onboarding employees who are a cultural fit
One of the primary responsibilities of HR is to ensure employees onboarded are a cultural fit. This involves making sure employees have values and vision that align with that of the company they are applying to. Employees who are a cultural fit meaningfully contribute to the organization and remain engaged at every step.
7. Maintaining in-organization blogs and forums
This goes a long way in giving your employees a platform to voice their views and share insights. Blogs and forums are excellent engagement tools that allow employees at different levels to stay connected and be aware of the happenings in the company.
📌 Relevant read: Deskless employee engagement strategies
1. Employee Engagement Survey
Before an organization starts to work on improving its employee engagement, there should be knowledgeable as to where the baseline is. This is where the engagement survey comes to play.
You can structure employment surveys in various ways that will give you an idea of where your company stands in terms of employee engagement. There are many ways to form questions like open-ended questions, rating statements, and multiple-choice questions about employee development and communication, etc.
You can later make statistics based on these surveys and devise strategies based on the responses.
2. Employee engagement activities
Giving employees a chance to ditch their desks and have some fun activities with other co-workers will help a great deal in optimizing employee engagement.
You can opt to arrange for office games, theme days, lunch n learns, office picnics, and more. You should make sure to arrange activities during work hours and not after work time. This is important to make employees not feel as if you are not infringing upon their personal time for official needs.
3. Diversity and inclusion
A diverse team of employees in terms of age, gender, race, ethnicity, and skill sets is a great way to improve employee engagement. Surveys have found that employees tend to stay longer in a job where there are diverse team members.
Having an inclusive team also reflects better on your customer base too. There will be better ideas and inclusive representation with a diverse team too. This will also help in improving employee engagement.
4. Corporate gifting
Corporate gifting is a great strategy that is well known that will help in optimizing employee engagement. A thoughtful gift at the right time will do wonders to increase the morale of your employees.
You can opt for customized gifts at the time of the holidays like Christmas, new year, Diwali, and more. It might also be a good idea to send personalized gifts to employees on their work anniversary, retirement, and new employee joining. This will make the employees feel valued and appreciated that they are part of an organization.
Relevant read: Work anniversary gift ideas to consider this year
5. Employee recognition program
Everybody feels valued when they are appreciated for a job well done. It is extremely important for employers to make employees feel valued with positive affirmations.
An employee recognition program is a great way to optimally engage employees. You can set up a monthly reward program for the top performers. It will allow employees to have a sense of camaraderie and sportsmanship.
6. Help in career growth
No one wants to stay in a career that is stagnant and not going anywhere. Hence it is important for the employers to help in the professional growth of their employees.
Management should take active steps to help in the growth of their employees and carve out new paths and opportunities. It might also be a great idea to be a part of their skill development and provide workshops for the same.
Employee engagement is a huge part of making them feel valued, appreciated, and not taken for granted. An engaged employee is a satisfied employee and it reflects positively in the customer satisfaction department too.
We hope this article has provided you with enough insight into the role of HR in employee engagement.
I am Srikanth Acharya, CEO at TheHomeOffice.in & OffiNeeds.com. TheHomeOffice helps professionals work more efficiently from their homes and at Offineeds, we help companies create #BrandAmbassadors through #CorporateGifts.