How Employee Engagement Drives Revenue

Engaged employees provide better service, and it begins with training.

Alan Mullaly, the business executive who as CEO of Ford Motor Company brought the automaker from the brink of collapse in 2008 to its first profitable quarter in years, outlined his thoughts on leadership and employee engagement in an April 2018 interview with Forbes magazine.

It isn’t a leader’s role to have the solution to every problem, Mullaly said. Instead, their role is to find people who know how to solve problems. The takeaway: if you engage your employees, your employees will do the rest.

During Mulally’s tenure, Forbes noted, employee engagement skyrocketed, leading to a transformation in the company’s product line and financial results. Although he retired from the company in 2014, Mullaly Is still commonly referred to as “the man who saved Ford.”

On the flip side, a 2016 Gallup study pointed out that low levels of employee engagement can have a negative effect on company success. Workers with low engagement are less productive, less profitable and less likely to be loyal, the study found, leading to higher turnover, more absenteeism, increased shrink and a greater number of safety incidents.

Anyone who’s been in the retail or restaurant industry for any length of time knows that a loyal, productive, well-trained staff leads to increased customer satisfaction, which in turn leads to higher sales and overall improved profitability. Engaged workers take pride in their jobs, delivering better, more attentive service.

With a clear link between employee engagement and revenue, though, some questions remain: What exactly is employee engagement, and what can a business operator do to foster it?

A 2018 study by London-based consulting firm Aon defines employee engagement as “the state of emotional and intellectual involvement that motivates an employee to do their best work.” And while there are many ways to foster employee engagement, the Society for Human Resource Management cites training programs, ongoing assessments and strong communication as some of the key ways to accomplish the task.

To help deliver the training, assessments and relevant communication that helps drive employee engagement, many companies today are adopting e-learning training programs. Technology firm Multimedia Plus, for example, recently introduced INCITE 5.0, the latest version of its INCITE mobile Associate Communications Platform. Already used by major retail brands, INCITE can help retail and restaurant operators improve communications and train employees via interactive, in-store mobile devices.

In addition to providing a consistent training experience across multiple locations, the INCITE platform provides managers and executives with data-rich metrics, including progress completing training materials and scores achieved on certifications. They can then measure that data against key performance indicators at levels ranging from individual employees to the entire organization, using that data as part of employee assessments. The platform can track completion dates for courses and prompt employees and managers when training deadlines are near.

Supporting employees with ongoing training, feedback and communication can be a key building block in employee engagement. And increasing employee engagement can lead to lower turnover, increased loyalty and a more productive team. The end result will be higher revenue, a stronger bottom line and an outstanding experience for customers.