The State of Employee Engagement in America and the Lowdown on Great Places to Work | DCR Workforce Blog

The State of Employee Engagement in America and the Lowdown on Great Places to Work

Every year companies are assessed on their workplace cultures and trust index ranks as they vie for the top spots among the country’s best employers and as great workplaces. This year, we have long-time contender – Google – on top again (for the seventh time), followed by the likes of Goldman Sachs and Hilton, as ranked among the best employers in America. Every year, only a handful of companies were recognized for the greatness of their workplace cultures and employee engagement.

These exemplary companies and their employee engagement activities have over-delivered on value to employees. We’re going to deconstruct some of their best practices to understand why they’re loved by their employees. Check them out to see if your company can take a leaf out of their book and aspire to provide similar offerings.

  1. Google: High compensation, great health care, personal fitness classes, great food (organic, gourmet, etc.), haircuts, spa treatments, on-site laundry, oil change and bike repair facilities are just some of the reasons employees LOVE working at Google. Being valued and respected as a human being (instead of as just another minion) was also cited as a main reason.
  2. Stryker: A medical device company, Stryker involves its 12,000 employees in the end-use of their products, and makes them feel a part of the life-saving process – which is a deeply fulfilling experience that can transcend the usual perks that any old employer can provide.
  3. Aflac: A supplemental insurance company, Aflac offers workers flexible schedules, subsidized on-site child care (which is also open during the office Christmas party, on-site chaplains, paid paternity leave and a work and family resource center. An employee’s paid time off can be scheduled by the day, week or hour – as needed.
  4. NuStar Energy: This oil pipeline and terminal operator’s motto is that “The Best is Yet to Come.” NuStar is committed to a no-layoff policy and loves to appreciate the contributions and efforts of its staff members while providing them with 100% health coverage, a rich retirement plan, company-wide bonuses and 60 hours of paid time off for volunteering.
  5. Novo Nordisk: This Danish maker of diabetes treatment products inspires its workers through videos that show the life-saving benefits of its products. It hires people with diabetes, and encourages further studies for staff members by reimbursing tuition up to $10,000.
  6. Goldman Sachs: This Wall Street firm pays its employees well. It also focuses on their wellness. A fitness center and a fully staffed clinic are not the only perks here, as the staff get to hear speeches from specialists on topics such as combating stress and being happy.
  7. Hilton Worldwide: In the U.S., women comprise 51% of this hotel chain’s employees, with 52% of them working as non-executive managers. The company offers two weeks of paid leave for new fathers and adoptive parents; and a 10-week leave after childbirth for new moms. They host events to promote women’s leadership as well as mentor them and provide support to through Women’s Team Member Resource Groups.
  8. Publix Super Markets: This employee-owned supermarket chain (largest in the country) promotes a strong family feeling and keeps voluntary turnover at an incredibly low 5% (other supermarkets stand at 65%) for full-timers and 38% for part-timers. Nearly 20,000 employees have worked at Publix for more than 15 years, 201 have been there for more than 40 years and one veteran has put in more than 50! Every employee enjoys the stock ownership plan that automatically plunks shares worth 7% to 10% of their pay into their accounts at the end of each year, keeping the cost to employees at zero. (P.S. For the last 55 years, Publix stock has grown on average by nearly 16% annually.)
  9. Whole Foods Market: This natural food supermarket caps its executive salaries at 19 times that of the average worker, and strives for an egalitarian culture. Teams that come under budget are rewarded by a share in the surplus, at about 6% of a worker’s total wages.
  10. Nordstrom: Established in 1901, this retailer is loved by its staff members for its family feel, open communications “getting to know one another” approach that emphasizes listening. Nordstrom offers on-site fitness centers and medical care plus it extends health insurance even to part-timers.

Employee engagement below 33%

Not every company may aspire to be ranked among the top employers in the country, but no company can hope to achieve great results with disengaged employees either.

employee engagement gallup

Source: Gallup

According to a Gallup survey in May, after a strong start to 2016, which has maintained the monthly averages in 2016 above 32.5% at all times, employee engagement stands at 32.7%, while 50.9% of employees were “not engaged” and 16.4% were “actively disengaged.”

If you’re an employer, now’s the time to wake up and start undertaking employee engagement activities that can stoke your employees’ enthusiasm and commitment to the workplace.

The importance of engaging employees cannot be questioned because engaged employees drive the innovation, growth and revenue that their companies need. Employee engagement guarantees the achievement of business outcomes essential to any organization including productivity, profitability and customer engagement.

What employee engagement activities is your company doing that could land it on the “Best Companies to Work for” list?

The content on this blog is for informational purposes only and cannot be construed as specific legal advice or as a substitute for competent legal advice. They reflect the opinions of DCR Workforce and may not reflect the opinions of any individual attorney. Do contact an attorney for advice specific to your issue or problem.

One response to “The State of Employee Engagement in America and the Lowdown on Great Places to Work”

  1. Shelley Luzaich says:

    Besides offering great perks, such as house cleaning services, meals and car washes, DCR is focused on encouraging every employee to voice his or her ideas to help create an innovative workplace. The internal gratification of being valued is as important as any external perk or reward.

Lalita is a people/project manager with extensive experience in operations, HCM and training and development across industries like banking, education, business consulting, BPO and information technology. She believes in a dynamic approach to life and learning as change is the only constant.