Intentional Employee Engagement Practices Shape Positive Experiences

The employee experience is a major point of interest to today’s employers for one primary reason — employee retention. People who have an enjoyable experience with a company are less likely to leave and are more likely to spread the word about that experience. 

“When you create a positive employee experience, you create advocates,” explains Theresa Coo, Vice President of Cybercare at Cyberbacker. “Employers devote so much time and resources to finding new talent today, but they should do more by focusing on their current employees’ experiences. When candidates are looking for places to work, they search online and check company reviews. If your employees feel cared for, those candidates will know about it.”

The connection between employee engagement and positive employee experience

Employee engagement and employee experience are terms that many managers toss around interchangeably, but they are not the same thing. Employee engagement is the level of motivation and commitment that employees feel towards their work, whereas employee experience refers to the overall experience an employee has with the company.

Employee engagement is more about internal motivation than external factors like perks or benefits. At its core, engagement is a relationship between a worker and a company. 

According to Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace: 2022 Report, 65% of US workers are disengaged. In other words, they feel indifferent about the organizations they work for. Managers cannot see this indifference by looking at an employee on paper — they need to observe how employees act in their day-to-day work environment and whether they are connected or disconnected from the organization.

Shaping engagement practices to improve employee experience in the workplace

Employee engagement is the degree to which employees are committed to an organization and is defined by how they feel about their work and role. And while this is a key factor in shaping positive employee experiences, the employee experience is the degree to which employees perceive their workplace as a positive environment. 

“An employee’s feelings about the workplace cannot be forced,” remarks Coo. “However, companies certainly impact how employees feel about their jobs. Go to the beginning of the relationship and look into your data. What expectations did employees have during the hiring process, and are you meeting those expectations? What did you promise them, and are you fulfilling those promises? All of these factors affect employee experience.”

Engagement drives experience. Highly engaged employees will have more positive feelings toward their organization than their less engaged or disengaged colleagues. 

“Creating engagement programs is our top priority,” says Coo. “We hire people dedicated to finding what matters to employees and creating programs to address those expectations. Their sole mission is to ensure our engagement practices improve our overall experience for all Cyberbackers.”

Tracking and maintaining long-term employee engagement

Fostering engagement that makes employees stick around — and even tell other people about their experience — requires an intentional employee engagement strategy. This strategy incorporates programs that address job security, personal growth opportunities, team-building activities, and recognition programs for both individual contributors and teams.

Today’s employees want a healthy relationship with their company that provides them with job security, personal growth, teamwork, fair compensation, benefits, and recognition. At the end of the day, everyone wants to feel like they are contributing something meaningful while being appreciated for their efforts.

“People are not looking only at compensation, incentives, and benefits packages anymore,” Coo explains. “The work experience matters so much more nowadays. Employees want to feel connected to the company’s culture, leadership, and corporate values, which is why we have to provide a complete package that addresses all parts of the employee experience.” 

Fostering employee engagement is a long-term commitment. It is critical to keep this in mind when thinking about how to track and maintain an engaged workforce. 

“We track attendance and participation at company events,” says Coo. “A silent team member signals detachment, and we address that immediately. We also have a team proactively reaching out to Cyberbackers to find out how they are doing and if they need help. Suggestion boxes and surveys are not enough; we make one-on-one contact.”

When employees feel engaged in their work, they want to stay with a company for the long haul. Engagement that drives a positive employee experience creates a workplace culture where employees feel supported and fulfilled.

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