Within your HR department, it’s essential that you’re keeping your employees switched on and engaged at all times. It’s easy for employees to feel dissatisfied with their job, so it’s important to look out for ways to improve that employee’s experience as an HR manager or team member. HR career is very challenging especially in times of hybrid workspaces and remote work. 

There are plenty of opportunities within HR to keep your employees engaged in the workplace so that they’re more productive and efficient in their jobs. In this blog, we’ll explore why employee engagement is crucial this year and how HR strategies put in place can help improve engagement.

Why is employee engagement critical for a business?

Unsurprisingly, your employees influence the success of your business. Without happy and engaged employees, you’re not going to have an efficient workplace to get the work done and make money.

Employee engagement can be a problem for many workplaces. New research of more than 600 US businesses with 50-500 employees found that 63.3% of companies found it harder to retain employees than to hire them.

Retention rates are part and parcel of employee engagement and satisfaction. If they’re not completely happy within their role, they’re likely to find a greener pasture elsewhere. Employees leaving can slow everything down by pulling on the resources of staff who may already be busy enough with their own work.

HR departments within any business need to recognize the importance of their efforts when it comes to working with their employees on a day-to-day business. It can often be the little things that make a big difference to an employee’s experience within the workplace. The right strategies and approach to employee engagement can make a real difference.

Six HR strategies for employee engagement in 2022

Disengagement can cause severe damage to a company’s organizational dynamic, and it can throw off a lot of the hard work that’s being done to drive success. What HR strategies could be useful for your employee engagement in 2022?

Regular communication is vital

Communication within a business is more important than you think. According to a McKinsey report, those companies that have well-connected teams can see a productivity increase of 20-25%.

Employees value communication because it makes them feel seen, and it can highlight any confusion within their own role and that of their co-workers. A lack of conversation between colleagues or customers can lead to problems further down the line.

It’s vital that you’re doing everything you can as an HR department to provide the opportunities and tools to communicate effectively. For example, setting up meetings and using online communication tools is handy.

Use a 1 on 1 meeting tool

One-to-one meetings can be crucial, especially when building a relationship with each of your employees. It can act as a confidential space to talk about concerns that they may have or simply offer guidance to the individual on their work.

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This 1 on 1 meeting tool is a great way to organize meetings in advance and to maintain core communication, despite when the working day or week gets busy.

Invite feedback and action it

Feedback should be welcomed and not seen as harsh criticism or a negative reflection of the business. Many fear that receiving any form of feedback is possibly welcoming a tidal wave of concerns but wouldn’t that alone be a cause for concern?

For any HR manager or department, inviting feedback from your employees should be one thing but actioning it is essential too. Often enough, feedback can be taken on board, but nothing is actually done with it.

Employees will often express their concerns for a reason and so will expect something to come from what they’ve shared. There’s nothing more frustrating than realizing you’re in an echo chamber and that none of your needs are being met.

It’s good to welcome feedback where you can, whether that’s through occasional employee surveys or perhaps having a suggestions box for employees to add into.

Improve employee well-being

Your employee’s well-being is essential to the success of your business. Staff who aren’t mentally present or are run-down due to being overworked or stressed can generally lead to resignations and low-performance levels.

With a growing concern for health and mental well-being in the workplace, it’s a great opportunity to focus this year on improving that well-being. Employees will appreciate their employees being looked after and acknowledged when it comes to their health.

There are certain practices you can put into place to help improve the well-being of your staff, but if you’re struggling to know what, ask the employees themselves.

Boost employee engagement with software

You can easily boost employee engagement with the right software in place. There are a lot of software services available, including Alya. This is a great platform that HR professionals can implement to help introduce various well-being activities and initiatives that better the experience of the employee within the workplace.

From meet and greets with new employees to regular challenges that employees can compete in, it’s all part of maintaining a healthy working environment. 

Give your employees empowerment

Some managers like to micromanage, which, although it can sometimes be effective, doesn’t always benefit the rest of the team. Delegating the work properly and giving employees an opportunity to grow is vital.

Employee engagement can take a knock if employees are constantly being corrected or not given the proper feedback required to improve their work.

A better strategy to approach as an HR manager is to give your employee the empowerment they need to do their work without being critiqued every other second. It’s important to let those in senior roles know that empowering and trusting staff to work independently is a lot more effective. 

Of course, support is always needed. You don’t want to leave the employee in a boat without a paddle, so ensure there’s a degree of support provided. Work with the management and hierarchy within your business to create an action plan that will help delegate work effectively.

R department, it’s also a great practice to identify any staff development opportunities that may be apparent and can be utilized with company resources available.

Recognize and reward good work

It’s always necessary to recognize and reward good work. Even if it’s not something that has made a big difference, it deserves to be noticed regardless.

Recognition and rewards should be handed out regularly and to all those within the organization. It shouldn’t just be reserved for those who are in senior positions and, therefore, perhaps get more opportunities to impress.

Whether it’s a financial reward or just a mention in the company newsletter, recognition and rewards are crucial. They go a long way in helping employees feel valued and appreciated within the workplace.

Try to implement this structure within all of the relevant departments so that all individual staff members are being given a chance to impress.

Appreciate a new working environment

There’s a new working environment post-pandemic, and it’s something that should be recognized. A hybrid model of working from home and from the workplace itself is likely to be the new norm for most businesses.

As a department for human resources, it’s necessary to acknowledge this and to appreciate that for some, this will be the new way of working in 2022. With that said, you may need to invest in the right tools and software to help improve hiring and remote working in general.

Try to adapt where you can in order to cater to existing employees that need a bit more flexibility within their work life.

Use tools to hire remotely

When recruitment drives come around, tools to hire remotely may be required. Not all prospective employees will be able to come in for physical interviews, and there may be new roles that are completely remote-based. 

Use tools to hire remotely

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With that in mind, being prepared for this is essential, especially with remote working going nowhere soon.

Tips for keeping employees happy in the workplace

There are many ways that you can help keep employees happy within the workplace. By doing just a few of the following, you can help lower staff turnover rates and create a more pleasant working atmosphere. 

  • Don’t neglect their hard work
  • Check-in regularly
  • Create a positive workplace environment. 
  • Reward and acknowledge employee efforts.
  • Listen to concerns and address them.
  • Provide a work-life balance.
  • Create career mobility.
  • Encourage breaks.

Wrapping up

In 2022, employee engagement should be a priority and something that doesn’t get placed further down the list. 

Focus on how your HR department can introduce better strategies that are going to keep your employees satisfied within their roles and the company itself. With active efforts towards employee engagement, staff will certainly be more engaged within the workplace.