Human Capital Management Blog

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4 key issues with the state of employee engagement today

employee engagementA key responsibility in the modern HR office is attending to the ongoing challenge of propping up employee retention and productivity, but nowadays, talent leaders are finding that more difficult to do. The main problem is a lack of employee engagement.

Far too often, today’s employees don’t feel any passion for their jobs or any real connection to their employers – as a result, it becomes far more difficult for companies to keep their people productive.

According to HR BLR, there’s been a noticeable shift in the employee mindset. People don’t think of themselves as dedicated team members at their current place of business – instead, a job is just a temporary posting before moving on to the next one.

The news source noted that as hiring increases, it’s becoming more and more difficult to engage employees and retain critical talent. Recent survey data from Mercer, released in the organization’s “Employee Views on Moving Up vs. Moving On” report, showed that 32 percent of employees today consider their employment to be a job, not a career.

Ilene Siscovick, partner and North America talent and career leader at Mercer, says that a number of factors have converged to create this changing mentality.

“The dynamic interplay of multiple trends – a disenchanted workforce that is multigenerational, skill shortages, global expansion and gender equality – is creating real challenges for managing talent,” Siscovick said. “By outlining specific skill sets for career paths, organizations can help employees better understand growth potential within the company and improve overall efforts to retain and motivate their existing workforce.”

So how can your company address the issue and bring employee engagement back? The effort should start with a basic understanding of the problem. To that end, here’s a look at four key issues with the state of employee engagement today:

An undefined career path
Often, the problem is that people simply don’t know where their careers are going. Mercer found that 78 percent of employees would stay with their current employers if they knew the “career paths” they were on, but often, they don’t. Workers are often left in the dark.

A lack of managerial input
People like getting input, either in the form of positive reinforcement or negative, about how they’re performing in their jobs, but often that doesn’t happen. Among today’s employees, 51 percent say they receive “no input” or “input only once in a while” from superiors on how to perform better.

Greener pastures all around
It’s hard to be engaged with one job when you’re constantly tempted to leave and get another one. This is a widespread issue – 28 percent of employees have considered leaving their employer and moving to a competitor within the last 12 months.

The search for transparency
People like to know what’s going on at their places of business. They want an employer that’s transparent and lets them know about opportunities to gain new skills or apply for new positions. Unfortunately, 26 percent of people say this type of information is available “not at all” or “hardly ever,” while another 27 percent say “only from time to time.” This is a lingering issue that causes a decline in employee engagement.

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