Are Your Employees Really as Engaged as You Might Think? - performHR

Everything’s going along swimmingly, your staff all seem happy and there’s no reason to worry about employee engagement, right? Ideally, you’ll be looking for the signs of disengaged employees on an ongoing basis, because research indicates that only 53% of employees across Australia and New Zealand are engaged at work.

If you’re not across the benefits of employee engagement, we’ll let the numbers speak for themselves. Gallup research has shown that highly engaged businesses can report 10% higher customer ratings, 20% higher sales, 17% higher productivity and 41% fewer ‘sickies’. Highly engaged employees are more loyal to the organisation, minimising turnover costs, and even have a greater commitment to quality and safety in the workplace.

So how can you tell if employee engagement has been slipping, or isn’t as high as it ought to be?

Some signs of disengaged employees

  • Avoidance of non-essential activities, or only doing the bare minimum required
  • A lack of collaboration and communication within the team
  • Deviations from routine, such as drops in performance or changes in demeanour
  • A sense that people are ‘clock watching’, or filling the time until they can leave each day
  • A lack of passion for backing standpoints or sharing ideas within the organisation
  • An increasing turnover rate.

It’s worth noting that not all of these signs need apply. In some cases, a disengaged worker might be producing quality work but still feeling ready to leave the team.

Of course, if you notice these signs in one worker the next step is to speak one on one with them. But what if you’re noticing these signs across the board? How can you generally support employee engagement? The solution is unlikely to be a simple one, but here are the places to begin looking.

Important aspects in supporting employee engagement

  • Train your leaders. Gallup research indicates that managers account for at least 70% of the variance in employee engagement scores. Your leaders and their skills matter a great deal! Here are some more leadership tips when it comes to engagement.
  • Provide options for professional development. Give your employees ways to grow and learn within the organisation, and they’ll be far more likely to stick around in the long term.
  • Recognise great workers and great work. This is a top driver of employee engagement and it simply makes sense – people want to be seen and appreciated for their efforts.
  • Ask for feedback regularly. In a Qualtrics study, Australian and New Zealand businesses with a feedback program achieved 12% higher engagement scores than those that didn’t.
  • Act on that feedback. Whether your systems and processes are frustrating employees, or work scheduling could be improved, it’s important to listen and respond to staff feedback.


Of course, the right employee engagement strategy will be uniquely tailored for your workplace culture. Regardless of whether you feel like the wheels are spinning in your organisation or if everything seems to be running like a well-oiled machine, you should have a robust HR strategy in place to support high engagement over the long term. HR outsourcing in Sydney and across Australia can help.

Contact performHR today for highly experienced managed HR and HR consulting in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Newcastle and Brisbane.

“only 53% of employees across Australia and New Zealand are engaged at work”

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