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HR Basics: Employee Engagement



HR Basics is a series of short courses, designed to highlight what you need to know about a particular human resource management topic. In today’s HR Basics, we explore employee engagement, what it means to be an engaged employee and a proven method for measuring employee engagement.

Engaged employees as those who are involved in, enthusiastic about and committed to their work and workplace. To create an environment where people flourish, employers need to understand what it means to be an engaged employee and how manage people for engagement in their workforce.

Although the concepts of employee engagement and job satisfaction are interrelated, they are not synonymous. Satisfaction is about the employee being happy with their job or organization. Satisfaction is an attitude, like organizational loyalty or pride. Engagement is about the employee being actively invested in their work and the value they add to the organization. Engagement predicts satisfaction, as well as many other concrete organizational results.

Gallup measures employee engagement using a 12-element survey – called the Q12 – rooted in employees’ performance development needs. Each question reflects one element of great managing.

Through rigorous research, Gallup has identified 12 core elements that link to key organizational outcomes. These 12 statements emerged as those that best predict employee and workgroup performance.

Creating a culture of engagement requires more than completing an annual employee survey and then leaving managers on their own, hoping they will learn something from the results that will change the way they manage. It requires an organization to take a close look at how critical engagement elements align with how managers understand and manage employee needs.

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