Employee Engagement Statistics to Kick Off 2020

Employee engagement is a hot topic for business leaders around the globe — and for good reason. Studies show that companies with engaged employees realize greater productivity and higher profits than those with less-engaged workers. For example:

  • Teams with high employee engagement have better customer engagement, greater productivity, better retention, and 21% higher profitability. (Source: Gallup)
  • A 10% increase in employee engagement investments can increase profits by $2,400 per employee per year. (Source: Palmer Morrel-Samuels at Workplace Research Foundation)
  • Companies with engaged employees outperform those without by 202%. (Source: Dale Carnegie

On the flip side, actively disengaged employees cost the U.S. $450 to $550 billion per year in lost productivity. Despite the fact that studies have shown the connection between employee engagement and profits, many leaders still don’t know how to strategically bridge the gap. In fact, one study from Dale Carnegie reveals that only about 25% of business leaders have an employee engagement strategy.

As you begin to execute your 2020 strategies, employee engagement is an integral factor to ensure success. To help you develop your engagement strategy, Wrike surveyed 5,000+ adults in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Australia who work full-time for an organization with more than 500 employees. Below, we round up some of the top statistics from the eBook measuring engagement and productivity across company size, gender, role, personality and more. 

Read the full eBook report Employee Engagement Survey: The Productivity Gap for the whole picture and complete set of statistics, along with contextual insights and engagement strategies.

Engaged and disengaged employee statistics

Overview

  • 91% of employees report that they’re engaged to some degree at work.
  • Only 40% of employees say they’re very engaged at work.
  • 9% of employees say they’re disengaged at work to some degree.
  • Individual contributors are more likely to be disengaged. 13% of individual contributors report being disengaged to some degree, compared to 5% of managers and 3% of executive respondents.

Why employees say they're engaged

  • 43% – They enjoy their role and work.
  • 40% – They collaborate well with the people they work with.
  • 26% – They understand how their work contributes to overall company goals and success.
  • 22% – They’re engaged because they feel their boss recognizes their hard work.
  • 21% – They believe in their company’s mission and feel like their work gives them a bigger purpose.
  • 20% – Their company has a great culture where they feel respected and trusted by their peers.
  • 20% – They have the tools, resources, and support they need to execute their work effectively.
  • 19% – They feel fairly compensated for their work.
  • 16% – Their workload is well-balanced and they don’t have too much on their plate.
  • 16% – They have a clear growth path and opportunities for career progression.
  • 9% – Their CEO is motivating and inspiring.

Why employees say they're disengaged

  • 45% – They feel like their work is undervalued or unrecognized.
  • 32% – They’re not making enough money.
  • 29% – They’re burnt out from being overworked.
  • 26% – They don’t have a clear path to grow their skills or career.
  • 24% – They feel untrusted and/or disrespected by their colleagues.
  • 21% – They’re uninterested in their company or job.
  • 15% – They feel like their company and job lack a sense of greater purpose.
  • 15% – They don’t have the tools, resources, and support they need to execute their work effectively.
  • 13% – Their CEO is demotivating and uninspiring.
  • 6% – They struggle to collaborate effectively with others.
  • 4% – They don’t understand how their work fits into the big picture of company success.

What employees say happens when they're disengaged

  • 48% – Their productivity suffers, and they do less work than usual when they’re disengaged.
  • 35% – They care less about the quality and results of their work when they’re disengaged.
  • 28% – They vent to their colleagues when they’re disengaged.
  • 25% – They look for a new job, sometimes during work hours, when they’re disengaged.
  • 21% – They struggle to be creative when they’re disengaged.
  • 17% – They care less about customers and giving them a good experience when they’re disengaged.
  • 15% – They show up late and/or leave early or take unexpected time off when they’re disengaged.

What employees say would make them more engaged

  • 42% – Higher compensation or a better job title would make them more engaged. 
  • 30% – Greater recognition for their accomplishments would make them more engaged.
  • 30% – A better work-life balance would make them more engaged.
  • 24% – A clear growth path and opportunities for career progression would make them more engaged.
  • 19% – Having the tools, resources, and support they need to execute their work would make them more engaged.
  • 18% – A better work culture where they feel more trust and respect from their colleagues would make them more engaged.
  • 15% – Better visibility into how their work impacts larger company goals and success would make them more engaged.
  • 14% – Tighter, more effective collaboration with the people they work with would make them more engaged.
  • 13% – A more interesting company or job would make them more engaged.
  • 13% – Believing in their company’s mission would make them more engaged.
  • 12% – A more motivating and inspiring CEO would make them more engaged.

Employee engagement and productivity 

  • 18% of employees say they’re productive at work 90% of the time or more.
  • 34% of employees say they’re productive at work 75-89% of the time.
  • 30% of employees say they’re productive at work 50-74% of the time.
  • 13% of employees say they’re productive at work 25-49% of the time.
  • 3% of employees say they’re productive at work 11-24% of the time.
  • 2% of employees say they’re productive at work less than 10% of the time.

Tools or capabilities employees say would improve engagement and productivity 

  • 28% – The ability to access their work at any time and work effectively from anywhere would help them be more engaged and productive.
  • 26% – Automation for the repetitive or mundane parts of their job so they can focus on doing more impactful and strategic work would help them be more engaged and productive.
  • 26% – A way for their manager to see everything on their plate and better balance their workload would help them be more engaged and productive.
  • 25% – An easier and more effective way to collaborate in context across teams and stakeholders would help them be more engaged and productive.
  • 24% – A better way to structure and view their team’s work so they can see how it supports larger company goals and initiatives would help them be more engaged and productive.
  • 20% – Defined project ownership and processes to hold collaborators accountable would help them be more engaged and productive. 
  • 19% – Dashboards with task statuses that provide a clear picture of their team’s projects and how they’re progressing would help them be more engaged and productive.
  • 18% – A centralized location where they can easily access the communication, files, and feedback they need to execute projects would help them be more engaged and productive.
  • 18% – Reports to measure their/their team’s output and prove their value to key stakeholders would help them be more engaged and productive.

Engagement and productivity for enterprise companies and teams

  • Enterprise (companies with 10,001 or more employees) employees are 37.5% more likely to report being disengaged.
  • Enterprise leaders are 50% more likely to feel their direct reports are disengaged than leaders at smaller companies.
  • 68% of respondents at enterprise companies report being disengaged for over a year, compared to 50-52% from companies with 500-10,000 employees. 
  • 61% of enterprise respondents say they never work remotely. Compare this with 43-46% of respondents in companies with 500-10,000 employees who say they never work remotely. 

Employee engagement and productivity differences between executives, people managers, and individual contributors

  • 94% of managers feel their direct reports are engaged. However, 58% of disengaged leaders report their employees are also disengaged.
  • While all leaders say collaboration (36%) and work-life balance (35%) are the most critical to employee engagement (35%), engaged leaders say a positive work culture that promotes trust and respect between colleagues is the third most important aspect (30%). Disengaged leaders, on the other hand, feel more recognition for employee accomplishments (29%) would increase engagement.
  • Employees globally rank feeling their work is undervalued or unrecognized as their top reason for feeling disengaged. But it’s interesting to examine the second-ranked reason given by role: 
    • Executives: “My CEO is demotivating and uninspiring.” 
    • Individual contributors: “I’m not making enough money.”
    • Managers: “I’m burnt out from being overworked.” 

Engagement is from Mars and productivity is from Venus 

  • Male employee respondents are 3.3% more likely than female counterparts to report being engaged or very engaged at work.
  • Female employee respondents are 8% more likely to say they’re productive more than 75% of the time at work.

Engagement across the generations

  • Every generation ranks “I feel like my work is undervalued or unrecognized” as their top reason for feeling disengaged. However, for 40% of millennials, that top spot ties with “I’m not making enough money.” In fact, millennials are 48% more likely to rank pay as a top reason for disengagement than other generations.
  • 66% of baby boomers said they’re productive at work more than 75% of the time, compared to 56% of Gen X, 46% of millennials, and 44% of Gen Z.
  • How generations rank the top five tools/capabilities that would help them be more productive:

Employee Engagement Statistics to Kick Off 2020 3

Introverts vs. extroverts on engagement and productivity 

  • 89% of introverts say they’re engaged at work. But 95% of extroverts say they’re engaged at work. 
  • 52% of introverts report being productive less than 75% of the time. 42% of extroverts report being productive less than 75% of the time.
  • How introverts and extroverts rank the top five tools/capabilities that would help them be more productive:

Employee Engagement Statistics to Kick Off 2020 4

Internal Surveys could boost engagement

  • Employees who say they feel engaged at work are 50% more likely to say that their company conducts a regular engagement survey.
  • In the companies that do an annual employee engagement survey review, 73% of very engaged employees and 35% of engaged employees feel their feedback is acted upon. Compare this to only 13% of disengaged and 5% of very disengaged employees who feel the same. 
  • Only 59% of employees say their company takes regular engagement surveys. 
  • Only 52% of employees who say their company takes a regular engagement survey say they feel changes are made based on their feedback. 
  • 61% of our survey respondents in companies with 500-1,000 employees feel their feedback is acted upon, compared to other cohorts: 58% of companies with 1,001-5,000 employees; 57% of companies with 5,001-10,000 employees; and only 35% of companies with 10,001+ employees.

Adopting Agile could boost engagement

  • Employees at companies that employ Agile methodologies are 73% more likely to say they’re engaged.
  • 50% of our very disengaged survey respondents say, “My company has not yet undergone a digital transformation and still uses primarily slower, older tools like to-do lists, spreadsheets, meetings, and emails to get work done.” 

The employee engagement strategy for your team

We hope that these statistics help you build a winning strategy for your team in 2020 and beyond. For more tips, statistics, and strategies, fill out the form below or read the full report.

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