Social care organisations looking to improve employee engagement levels should pay particular attention to their leadership, the quality of service delivery, and the values of the organisation, according to recent research that we have undertaken.
We analysed employee survey data from 28 social care organisations involving over 11,000 respondents, to determine the best way for organisations to measure employee engagement and what key factors influence it.
Organisations with high levels of employee engagement benefit from lower absence and turnover, reduced recruitment costs and often higher levels of customer service and greater innovation. As many social care organisations are facing severe financial constraints and pressures to deliver even higher standards of care, it’s critical they understand what drives employee engagement and how to improve it.
The research highlighted that the best question to ask to measure someone’s engagement is whether they would “wholeheartedly recommend their organisation as a good place to work”. This question is most influenced by organisational factors and as such, provides the greatest insight.
To determine the key factors which influence engagement in the sector, analysis was conducted on the relationship between respondents who would recommend the organisation as a good place to work and other key employee experience factors.
The results were that trust in the leadership team, and perceptions of the quality of service delivery and the values of the organisation are the factors that have the strongest influence on employee engagement in the social care sector.
Other factors such as reward, learning and development, and well-being were found to have the weakest influence – indicating that it is possible for someone to be happy with reward, their learning opportunities, or manager, but that this will not necessarily improve engagement.
The findings shine a light on the key factors that impact the engagement of social care employees. Organisations looking to improve engagement should aim to achieve high levels of positivity about their leadership, services and values. However, every organisation is different and we would recommend they explore the impact of different factors in their own organisation and prioritise accordingly.
A survey of staff will determine the key factors of employee engagement in an organisation and asking open questions about what staff would change in the organisation can help to find out where any dissatisfaction may lie.
Read the report in full: Employee Engagement in Social Care April 2015
For more information, email Roger Parry – Director, Agenda Consulting