Employee engagement is defined as the mental and emotional connection or commitment that an employee has to the company they work for and its wider values.
This goes beyond employees doing the day-to-day role that is expected of them and can have a big impact on your company’s success overall.
Why is employee engagement important?
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Employee engagement is essentially how actively engaged your employees are with their work and your company.
Higher employee engagement can help to improve employee satisfaction levels and boost employee socialisation. All of which will provide your employees with a more enjoyable experience at work.
Another area that employee engagement can help improve is employee turnover, as happy employees are more likely to stay.
Tackling employee problems
Your employees have many priorities, from their families to hobbies to personal challenges. Any changes in these can affect your employee’s ability to engage with their role.
Employee benefits are a great way to support your employees as you can cover so much with your offering, depending on which schemes you offer.
Get to know your employees and try to understand what their priorities are. This should give you an idea of what challenges could be preventing them from engaging fully.
Once you have this information, look at your employee benefits offering and see what you have available that could help employees to tackle their problems.
Speak with your employee benefits provider to get a better understanding of the schemes you could further introduce.
Make sure that you are consistently pushing what is available to your employees too, so they have the chance to use it to their advantage.
Boosting employee’s health and wellbeing
If an employee is having issues related to their health and wellbeing then this can have a significant impact on their engagement at work. This can be short or long term.
For employees with health challenges, they are likely to have appointments they need to attend regularly and more days than average where they are not feeling their best. Health issues can also cause employees more financial strain.
Employee benefits are a great way to help employees tackle some of the issues as there are options for both. For example, a Health Cash Plan can help employees manage the cost of healthcare whilst Health Assessments can help employees get an overview of their current health.
Another way to look at these schemes is how they can help prevent health issues from arising.
Burnout has become a big topic in HR and many employers are trying to find ways to tackle this problem.
Schemes like the Holiday Trading scheme help employees to take more annual leave without having to worry so much about how it will affect their finances.
These are just some of the options available that can help employees with their health and wellbeing. There are more employee benefits to help support your employees too so researching what’s available is key.
Reward and recognition
A large part of your employees feeling engaged with their work is whether they are rewarded and recognised for their hard work. If someone is getting out as much as they are putting in, they’re more likely to stay engaged.
There are a few ways you can use your employee benefits to help your employees feel recognised and rewarded for their hard work.
One option is peer-to-peer e-cards, where you as the employer can send your employees e-cards for a range of occasions. This includes a thank you note for their hard work or something more personal like their birthday.
Employees can also make use of these to send e-cards to their colleagues. This is great because it helps employees to not only feel recognised for their hard work but also helps to boost employee relationships.
Employee awards and rewards gives you and your team the chance to recognise employees for specific achievements. You can also add monetary rewards onto these awards to say a tangible thank you.
An area that can affect how your employees engage with their work is their financial situation. If an employee has a challenge with their finances, this can cause a lot of stress which can affect the employee while at work.
There are a lot of employee benefits that can help your employees manage their finances, in several ways, so they should be able to find a scheme that works best for them.
For example, some employees will want to speak with people that are more clued up about financial topics, so a scheme like Financial Planning would be good. Some people may want to just know more about topics to help them manage their finances by themselves, for these employees adding a Financial Education Library to your offering can help.
The financial issues your employees may have will vary widely so the more you can offer your employees, the better.
As mentioned earlier, your employees have a wide range of challenges and priorities, all of which can affect their ability to engage at work.
Flexible benefits are a great way to support your employees here because it puts the ownership in their hands of how they use their employee benefits.
Employees can utilise what they need most, when it’s needed most. Over time their needs will change, so the support they need will change too. Flexible benefits are useful here because employees can look at what’s available to them and utilise what they need.
Being able to get the support they specifically need will help them to be able to engage in other areas of their life again, including work.
Engaging remote or hybrid workers
Over the last few years, the ways of working have changed dramatically. The coronavirus pandemic forced most of us to work at home for a while but not all of us made the return to work premises full time.
This increase in remote working means that how employees engage with your company is changing. It can be easier for you to figure out how employees that are working on premises are engaging but because you don’t see them physically, it can be harder to do this for remote employees.
Employee benefits are a great addition to the engagement offering you can give your remote or hybrid employees. You can give them the chance to access the schemes that support their needs the most.
Plus, offerings like reward and recognition and communication tools can help them feel involved with their colleagues and business activity overall. It also helps them to receive the feedback and praise that they would normally get from colleagues in person.
For more on employee benefits, discover our wide range of benefits all available through our Salary Extras employee benefits platform.