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Top Employee Engagement Trends for 2022

17 min read

The idea of employee engagement has always been a contentious subject among corporate leaders. It is fairly obvious that companies with a highly engaged workforce have a better probability of succeeding than their competitors. Many companies, on the other hand, have failed to get employee engagement right. 

Establishing an intimate connection between an employee, their workspace, and the firm is what employee engagement is all about. Without employee engagement, companies struggle to accomplish their long – term goals, and business suffers the consequences. 

As people began working remotely as a result of the pandemic, there was a drop in employee engagement, which contributed to an increase in employee turnover in numerous companies. 

Many businesses are putting plans in place to increase employee engagement, which is causing new industry trends. Today, you’ll learn about a few trends that will dominate in 2022. 

A Superior Employee Experience 

Wanting your employees to leave individual issues at home is unrealistic, especially for remote employees who work and live in the same place. Many of the former job perks may no longer be available due to drastic change in the work model.

Although it is a massive responsibility, HR leaders must rethink the overall employee experience in order to bolster every individual in the organization. 

The rise of the millennials and gen-Zs in the workforce and their preferences, catalyzed by the rage of digitization has led employees to expect a much more fun, engaging and end-to-end solution (as they call it) to their woes.

In the years to come, companies will see their leaders focus on how to achieve an outstanding employee experience across the lifecycle of an employee.

Factors such as work environment, team relationships, professional growth opportunities, company culture, and recognition will be looked at from a fresh perspective. Organizations just cannot afford to ignore low engagement levels in 2018. 

Employees will become like customers, and their overall happiness will matter as much as customer satisfaction. Current trends will make leaders focus on examining their current employee journey map, and optimize it for their employees.

Technology such as pulse feedback tools, employee wellness apps, learning apps, mentoring, and productivity tools will be explored and experimented with by HR. This will lead to deeper analysis and understanding of talent and what keeps them engaged in a digital age and beyond. 

Continuous Learning 

Research by Tiny Pulse shows that a lack of career direction is a great source of employee disengagement. If an employee does not see avenues for growth or reasons to have a long-term association with a company, he/she will likely be leaving soon.

This likelihood of employees leaving the company due to lack of learning opportunities is getting recognized by companies. 

2018 hence, should see companies invest in the career development of their employees to make them feel fulfilled and worthwhile. Remote working is a reality of today’s work environment and companies have to leverage on the talent that likes to work from distributed locations.

However, employees who primarily work out of the office have complained about being paid less attention to when it comes to their career development.

Even companies with a remote workforce will start paying more attention to their staff and execute strategies that will help them engage their workforce through career development plans. 

95% of millennials are willing to pay for their own professional development and training.  

Investment in professional development of candidates is critical to retaining them. Organizations in 2018 will be providing their employees engaging learning opportunities that fits their lifestyle, along with regular coaching, mentoring and feedback that will give employees the direction to become what they aspire to be. 

Improved work-life balance 

According to research, 88 percent of employers have compelled their employees to work from home since the pandemic began. 

While remote work provides employees with the flexibility they need to stay productive, we must consider the impact on their personal lives. According to a new McKinsey survey, parents see the benefits of remote work in different ways.

According to the data, 63.2 percent of remote-working fathers are engaged, compared to 38.5 percent of remote-working mothers. 

Culture Over Compensation 

Company culture has never been more important from an engagement perspective. It is no longer a topic discussed in closed conference rooms or only known to people working in it.

Glossy terms on the career page of the company’s website are also not enough. Today, culture is a global phenomenon and known to everyone. 

According to Andrew Chamberlain, chief economist at Glassdoor, the top predictor of workplace satisfaction is not pay. It is the culture and the values of the organization, closely followed by the quality of the senior leadership and career opportunities for the employees within the company.

Reviews from Glassdoor data also showed that culture and values of the organization become more important as the income of an employee increases.

However, this not deny the importance of compensation as being one of the top factors that job seekers consider when evaluating potential employers. Once that is made, the next question to ask is what steps can improve employee engagement, morale, and productivity. 

The behavior and interactions of employees within a company on a daily basis can change a company’s culture. Even a small issue like an email or the phrases used while conducting a meeting can drive or hamper employee engagement levels.

Politics or gossip are bound to make businesses fail, and cannot go ignored. Employee behavior and reactions to daily activities need to be tracked to understand what is going on.

A good way to do this could be to use new tools for employee engagement and feedback in order to track and measure daily interactions. 2018 will take culture way more seriously by understanding these issues. 

Diversity And Inclusion 

An inclusive workplace is one in which everyone on the team is recognized, appreciated, and included in decision-making. Furthermore, having an inclusive workspace is considered important when a team is global in nature, with members of various ethnic and cultural backgrounds. 

In such cases, it is very evident to feel isolated and disconnected from the team, and if this takes place, your employees will leave quickly. 

Companies are attempting to foster an inclusive workplace culture by hosting informal gatherings, shifting toward diversity and inclusivity, and treating all employees equally. 

Relooking At Performance Management 

The present situation compels that companies make performance management a holistic process. Agile goal management with quarterly/monthly reviews is required in today’s business.

This, combined with a 360-degree feedback-based approach that incorporates multi-dimensional feedback for an employee, ensures that performance management is up to date in this modern era. 

Employees will be engaged and compelled to grow if they have a data-driven, real-time, and transparent picture of their performance.

Furthermore, an advanced performance management system would provide managers with precise information and statistical insights to help them make informed decisions.

All of this is crucial for enhancing employee satisfaction. 

Rewards And Recognition 

Organizations must recognise that each employee is unique, as are his or her goals and what makes him or her feel valued.

Developing a tunable rewards and recognition system that is interconnected with your performance management software is becoming a top priority for organisations. The competence from both of these approaches helps organisations identify and retain potential talent. 

Furthermore, we anticipate that leaders will use more technology-driven reward and recognition notions to praise and empower employees. More businesses will use employee recognition platforms to provide digital rewards and incentives to their employees. 

Quality Of Senior Leadership 

People are increasingly losing faith in their political systems, and shifting their focus to business leaders. Large organizations are expected to do them but and contribute to social causes such as income inequality, health care, diversity, gender disparity and the like.  

Such expectations are causing tremendous pressure on organizations, but also creating opportunities.

Large organizations are focusing on their contribution towards creating a positive relationship with their internal and external environment and tackling social issues that need pressing attention. 

People First Culture 

People First culture characterizes a company’s culture that prioritizes people before the profits. Companies are more creative, robust, and productive when employees are engaged, appreciated, and given the chance for well-being.

Many employees are aware of the void between the skills they possess and the skills they need to possess to perform best in their jobs.

Developing new skills and updating the existing skills has become the subject of discussion in every organization, this has led to the initiation of training and development for the employees that can lead to more success. 

Social distancing and remote-work models have made employees crave togetherness, priorities appraisal, and more compassion.

As there is an increase in hybrid work models and non-desk workforce, organizations will not overlook the need for connection between the employees.

Management should be persistent and cooperative in breaking the language barrier and distance, to ensure employees feel involved and make it easy to build relationships. This can assure employees do not have to feel left out. 

The well-being of an employee has to be emphasized more now than ever before.

The management has to prioritize more on people’s mental health and physical strength, allow flexible working hours, more opportunities to connect with other employees and respect their privacy outside of working hours.

As it is more evident that the well-being of employees will be playing a major role in the organization’s future plans. 

Inundation of ML and AI in the workplace 

The major requirement of HR management in the present situation is AI and ML technologies. Challenges during the remote recruitment, interviewing and onboarding process can become easy to resolve.

Already many organizations have started to use AL and ML-driven software to screen resumes for compatible candidates’ selection.    

Today’s Millennial workforce believes in constant and real-time feedback as well as long-term connectivity.

Instead of an annual performance review system, employing AI and ML technologies to perform monthly surveys makes employees feel appreciated, recognized, and emotionally invested in the organization.

These tools can also be used to make customized feedback forms to assess employee engagement levels as well.   

AI offers numerous advantages for human resource management by eliminating exhaustion, and repetitive procedures, speeding up the hiring process, boosting employee engagement, and lowering turnover.

AI has the ability to greatly improve the employee experience. 

Opportunities for Career Growth 

Organizations should frequently focus on the career growth of employees. Individuals feel career development allows developing one’s skills and knowledge, boosting one’s talent, and embracing accomplishment.   

Employees who continue to stay with the company to engage and develop more in their careers are more likely to achieve higher levels of performance.  

Providing opportunities for employees in increasing their skills, knowledge, and competence assures them that the organization is committed to its employees.

Being focused on employees’ career growth deeply impacts their self-confidence and dedication to the company growth which leads to increased employee engagement. 

Mental Health Wellbeing  

For the past 2 years, employees, as well as employers, have been through a rollercoaster ride, both physically and mentally.

The pandemic has shown just how important it is to support not only the physical health but also the mental health of every employee. 

Employees would work more effectively and efficiently, be engaged and satisfied in their jobs only if they feel healthy and happy.

The organization has to consider the well-being of an employee as the primary significance to achieve better productivity. 

There are many ways to help employees overcome mental and physical struggles: 

  • Initiate programs and workshops that can provide the employees with ways to balance their lifestyles. 
  • Conduct weekly or biweekly physical fitness programs like ZUMBA, YOGA, or palates, either by hiring professional trainers to enhance employees’ physical strength. You can also offer monthly or yearly subscriptions to join fitness centres. 
  • Initiate stress relief workshops and motivational talk shows, and sometimes arrange stand-up comedy which in turn can help employees have a change in their monotonous evenings as this can greatly impact in clearing all the negativity. 
  • Managers should schedule regular one-on-one meetings with their employees working remotely and interact with them regarding the problems they face within the organization along with the regular feedback and task-related progress.  

Guiding them during their difficult times can boost one’s confidence and mental wellness.

This will create a healthy and carefree environment that makes the employees feel valued in the company. Investing in employees’ happiness will reflect highly in terms of engagement, productivity, and of course, attrition. 

Final Thoughts! 

The pandemic’s long-term effects have created an unpredictable work environment, astounding in recent memory. The unusual series of events that occurred in workplaces over the last 18 months induced an understanding of the significance of employee engagement. Use our knowledge to navigate the ever-changing modern workplace. 

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    Meet the author

    Bhagyashree

    Content Writer

    Bhagyashree Shreenath is a full-time Content Writer at Keka Technologies. She is very passionate about writing and loves to write about the gaps in organization & human resource management strategies to handle the related concerns. When she isn’t writing, you will find her reading a book, or exploring new places.

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