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Why You Should Measure Employee Engagement, Not Employee Satisfaction

Why You Should Measure Employee Engagement, Not Employee Satisfaction

Over the past two decades, organizations have moved away from measuring employee satisfaction — but not because satisfaction is unimportant.

As a metric, employee satisfaction reflects a passive relationship between the employee and the organization. Improving employee satisfaction can increase contentment and reduce voluntary attrition, but content employees aren’t necessarily maximizing their potential.

Ultimately, satisfaction shows the employer’s contributions to the employee, but fails to identify the employee’s contributions to the organization. Of course, the employer-employee relationship is not a one-way street, and while satisfaction is an important consideration, it doesn’t tell the whole story.

To address real organizational challenges, we need to analyze the broader engagement construct. Employee engagement actively measures how employees feel about their company — and their willingness to act on those feelings. Compared with employee satisfaction, employee engagement has a much stronger connection to both individual performance metrics and desirable business outcomes. Organizations with high levels of engagement routinely enjoy higher profits, greater customer satisfaction, and lower employee turnover.

How Perceptyx Measures Engagement to Create Actionable Insights

The best employee engagement survey providers use benchmarked survey items that can result in actionable insights. Perceptyx offers a four-item measure of employee engagement:

  • Are you willing to recommend the company as a good place to work?
  • Are you proud to work at the company?
  • Do you get a sense of accomplishment from your work?
  • Do you intend to stay for the next 12 months?

We support these survey items with additional items intended to identify actionable barriers to engagement within an organization. For instance, survey data can compare highly engaged employees with less-engaged employees using a persona-based model, highlighting the gaps most critical to close. Survey items provide insight into key aspects of the employee experience such as wellbeing, teamwork, inclusion, and empowerment. The Perceptyx People Insights platform is designed to adapt to the unique circumstances of each organization.

Most importantly, our employee engagement approach supports insight-driven actions. Context is a crucial consideration, and through the Perceptyx Benchmark Database, leaders can distinguish between organizational weaknesses and areas of strength — and determine which areas deserve the most attention. The Perceptyx platform also facilitates comparisons between teams, departments, and subcultures within your organization to highlight the barriers to (and drivers of) engagement.

Start Building a Better Approach to Employee Engagement

Employee surveys have played a crucial role during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Great Resignation. Organizations that have developed strong listening strategies have benefited, but to adapt to difficult circumstances, leaders must understand the nuances of engagement. Understanding only the level of employee satisfaction is not enough. Having a well-rounded measure of engagement is critical to providing the deeper insight necessary to retain employees and maximize potential.

Perceptyx can identify the listening signals that drive success. Our people analytics platform combines best-practice surveys with organization-specific items to connect the dots between data and actions.

Schedule a demo to see how Perceptyx can redefine the way your business measures — and enhances — employee engagement.

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