Many employers only pay lip service to engagement, SHRM/Globoforce global survey finds

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Most HR leaders (99%) anticipate employee engagement being a key challenge to face, yet non-strategic engagement and recognition programmes continue to pervade companies, global research published yesterday shows.

The report from Globoforce, a provider of SaaS employee recognition solutions and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) had more than 700 responses from HR leaders and practitioners worldwide.

While 86% of companies track employee engagement scores, 71% of those same respondents track engagement levels via employee exit interviews, the survey found. This means companies are only learning about engagement issues at the time employees voluntarily leave the company.

Only 37% of HR leaders said they tie employee recognition programmes to corporate values, while less than half (43%) recognise employees based on performance related to the organisation's financial goals. These low percentages indicate an enormous missed opportunity to drive performance and manage culture through a strategic recognition investment, said SHRM.

Disturbingly, employee performance and acknowledgement remain disconnected: 54% of HR leaders do not think managers and supervisors at their company effectively acknowledge and appreciate employees, and more than more than two-thirds believe employees are not satisfied with the level of recognition they receive at work and 44% of respondents do not think their employees are rewarded according to job performance.

Evaluating the success of recognition programmes is a black hole for HR leaders and CEOs: some 87% of companies do not track the ROI of their recognition programme and 68% said they find it difficult to measure the effectiveness of their recognition programme. Just under half (49%) of responding companies track their programmes by unit/department - making it hard for senior management to get a full view of recognition efforts and effectiveness companywide.

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