Employee engagement isn’t a new topic by any means, but it continues to remain a primary challenge and focus for many organizations. Engagement strategies are introduced and built upon to inspire retention, increase business performance, enhance employer brand and drive quality candidates toward your organization.

Simply stated, engagement has an immediate and long-lasting, bottom-line impact. The key, then, is to find out how successful organizations are driving employee engagement and what today's talent desires most in terms of engagement strategies.

Quantum Workplace recently released their 2014 Employee Engagement Trends Report, featuring feedback from nearly 5,000 organizations and more than 400,000 employees. According to the report, eight items in particular are “extremely likely” to correlate to a high level of overall engagement.

For a look at these eight behaviors and additional trends pertinent to employee engagement, we turn to this week’s Talent Acquisition Fast Facts:

According to Quantum Workplace’s report, based on the feedback from 400,000+ employees, the following eight talent strategies are today’s “top drivers” of employee engagement:

1. The leaders of this organization are committed to making it a great place to work.

2. I trust the leaders of this organization to set the right course.

3. I believe this organization will be successful in the future.

4. I know how I fit into the organization’s future plans.

5. I see professional growth and career development opportunities for myself in this organization.

6. The leaders of the organization value people as their most important resource.

7. I trust the senior leadership team to lead the company to future success.

8. The organization makes investments to make me more successful.

Looking at these eight items, it appears there is one common theme: trust in leadership. As a recent edition of Talent Acquisition Fast Facts highlights, mistrust in leadership is the No. 1 reason employees choose to leave their current roles. Do you agree? Are there additional drivers you feel are important but not included in this list?

Also according to the Quantum Workplace report, organizations that have steadily improved retention rates over the past three years, 70.5% of these companies report “significantly” more engaged employees.

  • Organizations with declining retention over the past three years report that only 57.6% of employees are engaged. Tweet this!

Similarly, organizations with increased profits over the past three years report that 70.3% of employees are engaged; organizations that increased sales report 70.3% of employees were engaged.

If looking for bottom-line impact, there is little need to look further than increased retention, profits and sales! 

17 industries were represented in Quantum Workplace’s study, with 32.3 percentage points separating the most and least engaged industries. According to the survey, these are the best and worst industries in terms of employee engagement:

Top Three Industries: 
1. Real Estate (77.3%) 
2. Construction (74.8%) 
3. Technology (73.7%)

Bottom Three Industries: 
1. Public Administration (45.0%) 
2. Utilities (53.0%) 
3. Manufacturing (58.9%)

The bottom three industries remained unchanged from 2013-2014.

Interestingly, according to The Age of Modern HR, a new report published this month by Harvard Business Review (HBR) and featuring feedback from 498 surveyed business executives, employee engagement is the No. 2 most important goal for HR management in 2014:

1. Talent acquisition (64%)
2. Employee engagement (59%) 
3. Talent retention (58%)

Despite employee engagement being near the top of the talent agenda for 2014, only 20% of surveyed executives rate their performance on a scale of 1-10 as an 8 or higher.

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Perhaps the most noteworthy statistic from HBR’s study: only 27% of surveyed executives say their organizations collect and analyze data to evaluate the impact of their employee engagement initiatives. Tweet this!

Although employee engagement is the No. 2 priority among surveyed respondents, only 27% collect and analyze data, if HBR’s report is to be believed—perhaps indicating organizations aren't failing to focus on employee engagement, they’re simply not sure how to evaluate whether their strategies are working. Do you believe this conclusion, or is there a bigger reason (e.g., leadership, lack of career development or others) that’s causing employee engagement to remain such a challenge for so many organizations?

We’d love to hear your thoughts on Twitter and/or the Cielo Facebook page!