Are your employees more disengaged than usual? Has employee engagement at your office dropped? If so, don’t worry — organizations are often at the receiving end of falling engagement levels. It’s usually changing internal or external policies to blame.

For instance, consider the recent work-from-home mandate — work culture at almost every company took a major hit due to it, didn’t it? 

Well, it happens! But it’s nothing that can’t be resolved with a little pre-planning. 

Yes, if you want employee engagement at your company to flourish despite disruptions, you need to invest in employee engagement strategies that will stand the test of time and yield fruitful results. 

It’s every bit worth the effort too! An actively engaged workforce is key to increased productivity, profitability, and employee retention.

With that in mind, we’ve put together 5 quick and clever tactics to improve employee engagement in your organization.

How to improve employee engagement in the workplace?

1. Listen in

Do you frequently conduct employee engagement surveys? If so, are you proactive in implementing the feedback you receive? Do you share the results with your team? 

Successful managers go above and beyond in their attempts to improve engagement in the workplace — they address pertinent challenges teams are facing through regular meetings and company-wide surveys and encourage participation or “engagement” from every member to contribute to enhanced productivity in the workplace. 

This also extends to frequent evaluations of employee performance and long-term goals. 

More often than not, it’s poor communication that leads to employee disengagement. If your organization lacks such diagnostic tools to foster transparency and clarity in communication, employees feel unheard, affecting their performance.

So, make sure you hold regular meetings, one-on-one sessions, evaluations, etc., to stay updated on overall performance and address common questions and issues.

Invite feedback and suggestions, and take action immediately to improve employee engagement.

2. Improve your onboarding experience

First impressions do play a significant role in how your employees view you. Are you aware that 69% of new-joinees (source: SHRM) are likely to stay on for at least 3 years in a company if their onboarding experience is positive? Yes, that’s right! 

A successful onboarding includes giving your employees a thoughtful welcome, training them effectively, and helping them build amicable relationships with their coworkers. It means to make them feel comfortable in a new environment and take things slow to ease their transition. 

Start from the very beginning. Most companies shower their new employees with welcome gift hampers or new-joinee kits to leave a lasting impression. This could include a jumper or hoodie, pen set, notebook, sipper, and so on — basically, branded everyday items they can use in and out of the workplace. What better than a customized welcome package to make your employees feel like they belong? Pretty cool, right?

Next, instead of overwhelming them with complex tasks, let them gradually understand the processes and get used to the workload. Your employees will appreciate you for it. Studies show that a successful onboarding experience can increase the employee retention rate by 82%, according to SaplingsHR.

3. Send tangible appreciation to acknowledge employee performance/achievements

A tried-and-true tactic to engage employees is to acknowledge performance and ensure peer-to-peer recognition. 

According to a study by Gallup, employees whose efforts and successes aren’t recognized by peers and managers are twice as likely to quit.

This is why, big-game companies leverage rewarding programs to acknowledge top-performing employees, their professional milestones, and achievements. This isn’t just limited to merit-based incentives, promotions, or salary increments are a given; there are other personalized and thoughtful steps you can take to inspire your employees to continue doing their best. 

We are talking tangible tokens of appreciation such as gift cards to their favourite shopping stores, cool tech gadgets (wireless headsets, smart devices, etc.), or expertly curated gift boxes containing nutritious snacks or baked goods. All of these make your employees feel more connected to your goals and mission. 

4. Invest in the mental and physical well-being of your employees

Healthy employees = active employees.

Companies should leverage regular wellness-boosting, fun activities (or, as Michael Scott from The Office would call it, “funtivities”) to keep their employees engaged. Make your office an active and fun place to work.

From dedicated vacation days to fun runs, there should be exciting opportunities for your employees to let loose and enjoy the fruits of their hard work every once in a while.

You can have a yearly Wellness Day or host on-site yoga sessions, celebrate your employee’s birthdays and anniversaries, company events, and so on. Energizing activities like company-wide marathons and charity fun runs go a long way in bringing your employees together. 

Organize free healthy lunches once in a while, have your company kitchen stocked with healthy snacks and fruits — to promote smart snacking and a healthy lifestyle in the workplace.

But what about work-from-home employees? It’s no secret that working remotely can take a toll on your mental well-being. With no dedicated working hours, people tend to overlook their physical health as well. 

An excellent idea to cater to your remote employees is to send them home care packages. Did you know that companies that did so during the pandemic witnessed an increase in employee engagement by 17%, according to GoDelta.

Your remote working care packages can include various items to boost employee morale and promote a healthy lifestyle. 

It could be kitchen essentials, tea or coffee packs, or yoga mats, hoodies, and other fitness gear — thoughtfully customized as per their needs to help relieve stress, and make your employees feel cared for. 

5. Encourage your employees to volunteer

Associate with socially responsible causes your employees can contribute to. This could include blood donation campaigns, community service initiatives— delicate a few hours every month for your employees to volunteer and display their commitment to giving back to the community.

In fact, you can have them choose a worthy cause every month, one they are passionate about and wish to share with their coworkers. 

You can reward them with coupons or gift cards to acknowledge their participation.

Improve employee engagement step by step

As per Gallup’s State of the American Workforce, nearly 51% of the common workforce is disengaged, and only 33% is engaged. Companies can direct their energies to increase the engagement of approximately two-thirds of their workforce.

However, you can’t rely on a single initiative or employee engagement program to improve retention rates and enhance overall performance. Building employee engagement is an ongoing process, one you have got to creatively address, step by step, to inspire your team to contribute with their best work. 

If your employees see that their feedback is heard, efforts are recognized, and work culture is positive and rewarding, you’ll earn their trust and gather the necessary momentum to improve organizational efficiency.