5 Common Reasons Employee Engagement Declines

3 min read
Mar 11, 2017

5 Common Reasons Employee Engagement Declines

Because engaged employees are happier and more productive than workers who are disengaged, a majority of organizations consider engagement a top priority. 

But according to a recent Gallup report, only 32% of US workers are engaged. It’s even worse on a global scale, as only 13% of workers are engaged worldwide.

Despite the best intentions, it appears that many organizations’ engagement efforts fall short. With that in mind, let’s take a look at five of the more common reasons employee engagement starts to suffer, as revealed in our 2017 Employee Engagement Report.


01. Employees don’t feel connected to their peers

In past studies, we found out that the number one thing employees love about their jobs is their coworkers. Unfortunately, in this year’s report, we discovered that only 24% of workers say they have a strong connection with all of their colleagues.


Generally speaking, today’s workers form connections with the members of their immediate teams. They don’t get to know colleagues who work in different departments too well.

Only 27% of workers believe their companies are doing a great job with team-building efforts, according to our Engagement Report. There’s any easy fix: invest in team-building activities so that all of your employees get to know all of their coworkers. The stronger the bonds your employees develop with one another, the more engaged they’ll be.


02. Employee recognition programs take a back seat

Only 26% of employees feel valued by the organizations they work for. That’s down from 31% of workers who felt that way last year. When you’re working hard and no one seems to notice, how can you possibly be engaged?

When your employees go above and beyond, make sure that you recognize their hard work. According to a recent report, 58% of employees believe that more recognition would increase engagement. What do you have to lose? This list of employee recognition ideas will point you in the right direction.


03. Despite great perks, cultures leave something to be desired

It turns out that measurable things — like salaries, benefits, and other perks — aren’t that important when it comes to engagement. According to our report, the top drivers of employee happiness are having fun at work, enjoying company culture, being supported in career goals, and working next to people who are also happy.

Perks are great and all. But the invisible company culture still reigns supreme. Build a great culture, and engagement will follow.


04. There aren’t enough opportunities for professional development

While half of today’s managers believe there are adequate opportunities for professional development at their organizations, only 26% of employees do.


This is perhaps because only 25% of employees feel as though management is transparent — compared to 42% of managers who feel the same way.

To boost engagement, make sure that you understand each of your employees’ career goals. Support them any way you can. Check in with them from time to time to make sure they feel like they are progressing toward their goals.


05. The review process is outdated

More than three-quarters of employees (79%) think that their companies’ performance review processes need to be updated.


Some believe this makes it difficult to understand how to get a promotion while others say it makes it hard to figure out whether they are performing well in their jobs. Still others say the feedback delivered in annual reviews is untimely — they’d much rather have their performance reviewed periodically.

Good news: There’s an easy fix. Utilize pulse surveys that enable you to review performance and respond to feedback on a much more frequent basis. That way, employees will know whether they’re doing a good job right away. And if any problems materialize, they can be remedied immediately.



2017 Employee Engagement Report

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