Employee engagement globally presents dismal figures, according to Gallup 78% of employees are disengaged. Frontline employees make up 80% of the global working population making it imperative for organisations to have a clear engagement strategy in order to convert and keep previously disengaged or actively disengaged employees into engaged employees.
Employee engagement has historically not been high on the list of priorities within organisations and has often been thought of as a soft metric, however, what we now know is that it is a critical driver of core objectives having a direct impact on business outcomes such as employee productivity, safety and staff retention.
In Gallup’s 2020 Meta-Analysis, a study on team engagement and performance highlighted that organisations with high levels of engagement experienced 17% higher employee productivity and 23% higher profitability.
This blog will look at three practical ways to start increasing employee engagement levels across your manufacturing operation today.
Creating an engaged workforce is challenging.
- There is a lack of alignment between organisational culture and strategy.
- Shareholders are not inclined to recognise engagement efforts as a priority
- Engagement strategies are generalised for the entire organisation and not aligned to all levels of the business.
What are 3 ways to effectively drive employee engagement for manufacturing workers?
1. Establish a digital channel that connects the entire business
Manufacturing is an industry with stringent employee productivity, safety, security, and operational requirements. This means that large workforces need to be educated, updated and constantly trained on new and relevant protocols via innovative learning systems. This is largely done by utilising traditional systems, paper-based methods which are difficult to maintain, or tier-down briefings that can be overwhelming for managers with large teams.
Digital channels, especially mobile, are ensuring employee engagement solutions are utilised to help streamline and digitise core processes. It can be used to send critical company information, employee surveys, and can even be used to send out COVID-19 screening compliances to help make sure your employees are maximising time spent on the factory floor.
2. Include and recognise your employees
When employees feel included and informed about what’s happening within their organisation, they feel valued, which increases their sense of self-worth. This can increase morale, loyalty, employee productivity and overall culture.
Often frontline employees are the last to hear about updates or changes within the business even though they are the most impacted. So it will come as no surprise that the most popular request from employees is to get access to information that is workplace related.
So what are the most frequently asked for business updates?
- Urgent/Crisis updates
- Leadership messages
- Company news and awards
- Products and services
- Operational updates
Linked to this is recognition and reward. Employees spend a large portion of their lives at work and so want to feel that their employers value this significant investment of time. Recognising their participation and contribution can be done in a number of ways from recognition programs to monetary or lifestyle incentives like airtime or vouchers.
So why is it so important?
Employee recognition and appreciation are core tenants to building a high-performance culture. A survey by Workhuman found that 31% of respondents indicated that “recognition directly impacts their motivation to succeed” at work.
Furthermore, 53% of respondents indicated that they would like to “see employers incorporate more human moments in the workplace by offering recognition for their hard work.”
Here are a few ways to highlight top achievers within your business.
- Develop a recognition program to formalise your appreciation efforts, this can be management to team or peer to peer.
- Share employee achievements such as Long Service awards with the business.
- A Covid-friendly elbow bump can go a long way to showing your appreciation.
3. Listen to your employees
Giving your employees a voice to speak directly to the organisation can be beneficial in many ways, not only to gauge what the employee sentiment is but also to collect great ideas that can improve the business. Some of the best ideas to increase productivity or reduce operational drag come from frontline workers and giving them the opportunity to contribute to the business is a key driver in creating an engaged workforce.
Employee surveys can also be used to provide results with actionable outcomes.
Surveys allow your employees the opportunity to provide valuable feedback about the processes and operations. According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the responsiveness of a business to employee feedback can bring about higher employee retention, lower staff absenteeism, improved workplace productivity, and boost employee morale.
Here are some examples of the many surveys available to gather this feedback:
- Pulse surveys
- Annual performance review
- 360 surveys
Find out more about digital employee engagement solutions here.
Key Take Outs
Employee engagement is a proven tactic in helping drive company success. Organisations such as Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), dedicated to researching its efficacy on company success, say this:
“Engagement is also a key link to customer satisfaction, company reputation and overall stakeholder value. Increasingly, organisations are turning to HR to set the agenda for employee engagement and commitment to establish a competitive advantage.”
It is, therefore, vital to begin considering how your organisation is utilising employee engagement as a critical driver of sustainable success.
Are you ready to join some of the biggest global companies, actively turning their dispersed frontline workforce into engaged, motivated and productive teams? Click 👉 here to speak with a Wyzetalk expert today.