Over 50% of UK Employees are disengaged

51% of UK employees are disengaged according to HR Magazine, and there has been a 17% decrease in employee engagement since 2006. These figures are clearly negative, but just how important is employee engagement? Pretty important according to 83% of senior executives surveyed, who regarded unengaged employees as one of the 3 most significant threats to their business.

Employee engagement revolves around employees being committed to their company, and willing to ‘go the extra mile’. There are countless benefits to having an engaged workforce, and I won’t attempt to cover them all. But a few to consider:

• Companies with the highest engagement tend to grow 4.5 times faster than those with low engagement.
• Employee engagement is proven to improve business performance – engaged employees drive profit up, and you are more likely to retain talented staff if you keep them engaged.
• Engaged employees will become your greatest brand ambassadors – make them proud to work for you and feel involved in the decision making process and they will, in turn, paint a glowing picture of your organisation.

The Trafford Shopping Centre realised the raft of benefits engaged employees bring with them. Through reward and recognition strategies combined with people engagement, the centre recently became the first UK Shopping Centre to be awarded with an Investors in People Gold Award. The centre appreciates that world class customer service needs to start from within – and engaging their employees was the route to this.

Sounds great doesn’t it? But there’s always a catch! There is no short cut to engaging your employees. You will need to work at it, and work continuously to maintain the engagement levels. Involve employees in company decisions and encourage their suggestions – this can easily be done through your recognition scheme. The key to employee engagement is ensuring employees feel involved and valued, with sufficient recourses and support to work effectively. Your efforts will be rewarded in the long run.


  1. Are 50% of employees disengaged simply because they don’t have job security? According to a study by recruitment firm Badenoch & Clark 25% of employees are unhappy at work due to job security, inflation and downward pressure on wages http://www.needofficespace.com/servicedoffice-blog/a-quarter-of-office-employees-unhappy-in-job-7549.html/comment-page-1#comment-7533

    If that’s the case is employee engagement a step too far? At best a distraction and at worst detrimental to employee motivation? If an employee is unhappy and feeling uncertain about their job, asking them to ‘engage’ with the company, their managers and to understand how they can impact the business or suggest improvements is going to go down like a lead balloon. Perhaps the age of austerity has stalled the development of engagement and we should set our heights a little lower with defined schemes that focus on tangible benefits that make employees working lives better – eg more satisfied rather than engaged? Or is employee engagement only suitable for top performers who are more secure in their jobs?

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