Best Practice in Workplace Engagement 2019
If you’re reading this, the chances are you have some interest in Workplace Engagement. Whether you’re looking to drum up engagement levels before entering The Sunday Times Best Companies List and Best Companies Accreditation, or if you’re simply looking to make a start on your engagement journey from an HR or Marketing perspective, chances are you’re looking for some inspiration.
And why wouldn’t you be? If you’re going to do up a kitchen, you’ll probably look through brochures, magazines, Pinterest, Instagram and any number of other sources to figure out what you want to achieve. In the same vein, researching ways to increase engagement levels and figuring out what works for you is invaluable to achieving sustainable workplace engagement, minimising staff turnover and generating positive messages to the outside world about your company culture.
We are beginning to ramp up to this year’s survey launch (if you haven’t registered already, there is still time!), and we thought it would be great to share the best workplace engagement practice from some of the top companies in 2019.
Key Drivers in Workplace Engagement 2019
We surveyed 242,211 individuals across 697 companies, and these responses are what we use to analyse the major drivers across workplace engagement. Our methodology breaks this down into eight factors, each of which connects with the others in different ways. However trying to improve all of these at once is like trying to run a marathon at a sprint! It’s definitely easier to slow the pace down, and establish which of these factors are going to have the biggest effect on overall engagement levels.
We analyse which of the factors are most correlated with workplace engagement each year. What this means is that we can identify which of the factors are going to affect your engagement levels most, allowing you to put more energy into improving these areas, and increasing your overall engagement levels further.
Most Correlated Factors – All Companies 2019
As we can see, Leadership and My Company are the two most highly correlated factors of the eight, closely followed by My Manager and Personal Growth.
We have looked into the statements that make up the Leadership factor, and across the board there has been an increase in scores year-on-year. In particular, confidence in the leadership of senior management and perception of these individuals demonstrating the values of their companies has increased:
Year on year, Leadership, My Company, Personal Growth and My Manager consistently matter most to the workforce, giving us strong ground from which we can begin to improve.
As mental health awareness increases and the stigma around this challenged, we have included Wellbeing initiatives in our research. With these areas targeted, let’s have a look into some of the Best Practice showcased by companies who scored the highest in The Best Companies to Work for List 2019…
There is a strong relationship between sight of an organisation’s leadership and an employee’s understanding of the company goals and values. An organisation’s senior management that exemplifies the company values and engages with the whole business not only sets an example for communication for other managers, but also reinforces the overarching goals that each member of staff is working toward. This year. Admiral placed 1st in The Sunday Times Best Big Companies to Work for List, and the following is how their Senior Management and CEO approach this factor.
- David Stevens, Admiral CEOView Admiral's full engagement profile here
A factor which is impacted by feelings about leadership and an employee’s manager, the My Company factor focuses on how much people value the organisation, how proud they are to work there, and whether they feel they make a difference. This factor is very dependent on a company’s mission, values and vision, and how a company communicates this to their workforce. This is something that The New World Trading Company has been highly successful in this year, and they ranked 5th in this year’s The Sunday Times Best Companies to Work for List.
A highly-correlated factor in most every organisation we work with, having a manager that employees respect and that can get the best out of them is crucial to an engaged workforce. This factor measures whether people feel supported, trusted and cared for by their immediate manager. The age-old adage of ‘People don’t leave jobs, they leave managers’ is often quoted but nonetheless relevant, and Clarasys, who came 3rd in The Sunday Times Best Small Companies to Work for List, have excelled in this area.
This factor examines whether people feel challenged by their job, whether their skills are being utilised and their perceived opportunities for advancement. This factor is very much associated with an employee’s feeling of getting a fair deal from the company, and is where organisations can have a marked impact in having a positive effect on an employee’s feelings about the company. Stockport Homes, who ranked 3rd in The Sunday Times Best Not-for-Profit Companies to Work for List, share some of their ideas here.
Wellbeing at work is defined by so many variables, in particular it can be impacted by an employees manager, the company leadership. The statements from our survey under this factor measure the stresses and pressures a person perceives, their balance between home and work life, and the effect these elements have on personal health and performance. The good news for companies around the UK is that compared with the 2018 results, the majority of statements from across the Wellbeing factor have been responded to more positively. In particular, scores for the statements ‘My health is suffering because of my work’ are 2% more positive than they were last year, indicating that fewer people are negatively affected as a result of their work.
Connect Catering, who topped The Sunday Times Best Companies to Work for List, have shared some of the initiatives they have to bolster their employees’ Wellbeing.
- Kate Bendall, Joint Managing Director“It’s the people at every single level that matter the most. We want everyone who works for Connect Catering to be able to do their job with a smile on their face, because they have all the support and training they need, to perform their roles in the most efficient way possible with knowledge at their fingertips. In this way we are able to provide an unrivalled service for our clients – quite simply we actually do what others just say they do.”
- Louise Laver, Joint Managing DirectorView Connect Catering's full engagement profile here
What Can I Take from This?
These individual best practice examples are implemented as part of a wider strategy in each case – they are by no means a one-action policy which you can implement to increase your engagement levels. Every organisation is different, with distinctive goals and culture patterns, meaning that not all of the above examples may be relevant to you and your company.
However, by examining what some of the highest-scoring organisations have implemented as part of their engagement plans, you might be inspired to apply these ideas to your own strategies.
If you would like to find out more about the surveying that Best Companies offers, and the subsequent opportunities for insight, improvement and recognition, please contact [email protected] or call us on 01978 856 222.
 When compared to other companies in the ‘Big’ size category (2000+ headcount.)
 When compared to other companies in the ‘Small’ size category (50-249 headcount.)