Is staff engagement really linked to loyalty?

by Miklos Bolza30 Jun 2016
Employees in Singapore are the second least engaged amongst seven Asia-Pacific economies, according to the latest study by the International Data Corporation (IDC).
The report, commissioned by the HR tech firm Workday, compared Singapore with Australia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, the Philippines, China and India.
In Singapore, a mere 25% of workers said they were very engaged at work. Among those surveyed, the only country performing more poorly was Malaysia at 23%.
While the results varied for each country, Singaporean respondents said the following three factors were the most important for driving employee satisfaction and engagement:
  1. Better pay/salary and rewards
  2. Enjoying the work they do
  3. The feeling of making a difference
Interestingly, despite these lower levels of workplace engagement, workers in Singapore are some of the least likely to jump ship. Only 22% of survey respondents said they were likely to change jobs.
Conversely in countries with the highest engagement levels, such as India and the Philippines, workers were more likely to move to another company.
This means that overall employee satisfaction levels are not linked with loyalty and that organisations need the right tools and metrics to really cement the relationship with staff
Chano Fernandez, Workday's president for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Asia-Pacific and Japan, talked to The Straits Times about this.
“If companies don't understand their employees, they can't take action to engage them,” he said at a recent Workday Elevate conference.
“But if I understand how well my employees’ goals and objectives are aligned to the company strategy, and how well they are performing towards those, it gives me a competitive advantage.”
The study found that, overall, firms in Asia-Pacific were lacking in both metrics and tools required to boost employee engagement.
Only 15% combined both HR and organisational metrics that tracked employee output as well as the impact staff have on the company.
Additionally, only 7% had an end-to-end integrated HR/talent platform which was aligned to the business needs. This type of platform can offer a holistic view of all employees and uses analytics to improve retention and lower annual staff turnover rates.
Related stories:
Are your staff truly loyal?
“Engagement and culture are not HR issues”
Revealed: Singapore’s most engaged workforces


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