What is Employee Engagement?

Employee Engagement definition

Employee engagement is the emotional attachment employees feel towards their place of work, job role, position within the company, colleagues and culture and the affect this attachment has on wellbeing and productivity. From an employer's point-of-view, employee engagement is concerned with using new measures and initiatives to increase the positive emotional attachment felt and therefore productivity and overall business success. Employee engagement is seen by many to be an example of a competitive advantage.

Proponents of employee engagement say that employees that feel emotionally connected to their positions are more likely to go the extra mile, remain loyal and perform to the best of their ability. For fans of employee engagement, the emotional connection is the anchor which keeps employees motivated during difficult economic and personal times.

Engaged employees are perceived to form part of an organisation's brand and an engaged, happy workforce can have a knock-on effect on customer retention, recruitment of key talent and the ability to attract new customers in a world where a company's values is crucial to consumers.

Critics question whether employee engagement is compatible with the naturally competitive business environment, whether positive emotional attachments actually result in increased productivity and whether there is sufficient ROI on employee engagement initiatives to make them worthwhile. Measuring employee engagement can pose a problem for many businesses.

HRZone has developed an Employee Engagement toolkit to help you develop a more engaged workforce - it contains insight from leading academics and provides handy tips to apply to your own organisation.