Cerkl Broadcast
Cerkl Broadcast

Employee Engagement and Retention: A Comprehensive Guide for 2024

Unlock the potential of your workforce with proven techniques for employee engagement and retention. Maximize productivity and profitability.
Written by: Penny Swift
employee engagement and retention
Published: June 26, 2024
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In today’s competitive business environment, employee engagement and retention play crucial roles in the success of organizations. When employees are engaged and committed, they are more likely to contribute their best efforts, resulting in increased productivity, higher morale, and reduced turnover rates.

One of the key components of employee engagement and retention is effective internal communication. By establishing transparent communication channels, companies can ensure that their employees feel valued, connected, and motivated. 

Exploring the relationship between internal communication and employee engagement and retention is crucial. Internal communication done right can lead to more engaged employees, which also increases employee satisfaction. If employees are more satisfied, productivity improves, leading to overall value for the organization. 

Benefits include retention of top talent and the opportunity to promote best practices for enhancing employee engagement. The organization can provide insights into measuring and evaluating employee retention and engagement efforts. And by leveraging the power of internal communication, they can foster happier employees and attain success. 

Take TriHealth, an award-winning healthcare system based in the Greater Cincinnati area. With Cerkl Broadcast’s powerful Audience Manager and AI-powered content delivery, they increased employee engagement by 164% in just one year.

But first, it’s important to understand the importance of employee engagement and retention and the ways internal communication affects it. Then, you can measure current employee retention and engagement and take the next step to improve. This involves learning best practices for enhancing engagement and retention — and applying them. 

Understanding the Importance of Employee Engagement and Retention

Well known for its ongoing top notch research, Gallup estimates that highly engaged teams show 23% greater profitability, 43% less employee turnover, and 10% higher customer loyalty.

Retaining Top Talent for Organizational Success

Retaining top talent and reducing turnover is crucial for an organization’s success. High-performing employees bring valuable skills, knowledge, and experience to the table. When companies retain these individuals, they benefit from their expertise and the continuity they provide. Retention of top talent also contributes to a positive work environment, as other employees are inspired by their peers’ achievements and growth.

By retaining talented employees, organizations can maintain a high level of productivity, ensure continuity in key projects, and foster a positive work culture. Top performers often serve as role models for other employees, inspiring them to strive for excellence and contributing to the overall development of the workforce. Retaining top talent also saves organizations from costs associated with recruitment, onboarding, and training new employees. Ultimately, this results in increased efficiency and profitability.

Minimizing the Cost of Employee Turnover 

Employee turnover comes with a high price tag. It involves costs from recruiting, onboarding, training, and lost productivity during the transition period. Several years ago, Gallup estimated that the cost of replacing just one employee could range from one-half to two times that person’s annual salary. The costs associated with employee turnover extend beyond the obvious expenses of recruitment, hiring, and training new employees. There are intangible costs as well, such as the loss of institutional knowledge, disruption of workflow, and decreased team morale. The recruitment process itself can be time-consuming and expensive, involving advertising, screening resumes, conducting interviews, and background checks. Moreover, training new employees requires resources and effort, not only in terms of providing initial training but also in the form of reduced productivity as new hires get up to speed.

Additionally, turnover negatively impacts employee morale and disrupts team dynamics; if people are constantly joining and leaving the team, then it’s impossible to establish a consistent work state. By focusing on employee retention, organizations can reduce these costs and maintain a stable and efficient workforce.

The solution, of course, is to increase engagement and reduce turnover. 

In its State of the Global Workforce 2024 Report, Gallup shares statistics from a 2024 meta-analysis that involved 183,000 business units across 53 industries in 90 countries. When teams were highly engaged, turnover dropped from 21% in high-turnover organizations (40% or more) to 51% where there was low low-turnover (40% or less). 

A lot goes into attracting top talent, and if there is low retention, they might not stay long. Things like employee banding, education, and onboarding take lots of time and money. Therefore, it is important to save these costs and focus on employees who are already working for you.

Enabling Employee Advocacy

Employee advocacy is a powerful tool for attracting top talent and enhancing an organization’s employer brand. Satisfied employees serve as brand ambassadors, sharing their positive experiences and thoughts about working for the company. These testimonials highlight the potential impact of effective employee engagement and retention strategies. They showcase an organization’s commitment to employee satisfaction, a supportive work environment, growth opportunities, and a culture that fosters long-term job sustainability. 

By sharing their stories, employees add an authentic touch to the organization’s marketing and branding efforts, building trust and credibility with customers, clients, and potential hires. This approach not only attracts new talent but also reinforces the company’s unique strengths and values, providing valuable insights into its culture and work environment.

employee quotes

Employee quotes also add an authentic and personal touch to the organization’s marketing and branding efforts. They showcase the company’s commitment to employee satisfaction and can enhance its reputation as a desirable workplace. When employees share their positive experiences and thoughts about working for the company, it creates a sense of trust and credibility among customers, clients, and potential hires. 

Improving Productivity and Performance

Employee engagement and retention are crucial for improving productivity and performance. When employees are engaged, they are more motivated, focused, and committed to their work. This leads to increased job satisfaction, better work quality, and higher levels of productivity. Engaged employees are also more likely to take ownership of their work, innovate, and adapt to changes, ultimately driving business results. By prioritizing engagement and retention, organizations can reap the benefits of a more productive and high-performing workforce.

Fostering a Positive Work Environment

Fostering a positive work environment characterized by open communication, trust, and respect among colleagues and leaders is crucial. It is a place where employees feel valued, heard, and supported, and where they can grow and develop their skills. A positive work environment also promotes collaboration, innovation, and creativity, leading to a more engaged and motivated workforce. By creating a positive work environment, organizations can reduce turnover, improve morale, and increase job satisfaction, ultimately driving business success.

Best Practices for Employee Engagement and Retention

A much-quoted piece of advice from Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, highlights the potential simplicity of a good employee engagement and retention strategy.

“Take care of your employees, and they’ll take care of your business.”

Richard Branson

But it does take planning and a lot of positive input from leaders and managers. Here are four of the most important best practices to follow. 

#1 Create a Positive and Inclusive Work Environment

A positive and inclusive work environment promotes engagement and encourages employees to stay with the organization. Inclusivity means embracing diversity in all its forms, including race, gender, age, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, and disabilities. It’s crucial for fostering employee satisfaction, collaboration, and organizational success. There are many ways to create and foster this kind of environment within internal communication. 

Foster a Culture of Diversity and Inclusion

This begins with establishing clear policies and practices that promote equal opportunities and fair treatment for all employees. By embracing diversity and inclusion, organizations create a sense of belonging and respect among employees. This fosters innovation, collaboration, and employee satisfaction, leading to higher retention rates.

Diversity and inclusion in organization leading to higher employee retention rates.

Encourage Employee Collaboration and Teamwork

Promoting collaboration and teamwork creates a supportive environment where employees feel valued and motivated. By fostering cross-functional collaboration, organizations can tap into the diverse expertise of their workforce and enhance engagement and retention. Encouraging open communication and active listening allows for the expression of diverse perspectives and experiences, which cultivates a sense of belonging and psychological safety.

#2 Provide Growth and Development Opportunities 

Employees value growth and development opportunities. Organizations should invest in training and development programs that help employees acquire new skills and advance in their careers. This way, employees have more cultural and social competency. This can help them in new situations and make them more adaptable. 

Provide avenues for professional growth, such as training programs, mentorship, and internal mobility. Create individual development plans for employees and support their ongoing learning and skills development. Establish clear career paths and communicate opportunities for advancement to motivate employees to stay and grow within the organization.

Employee Training and Development Programs

Comprehensive training and development programs enable employees to enhance their skills, stay relevant, and pursue growth within the organization. These programs can include workshops, mentoring, job rotations, and tuition reimbursement initiatives. Moreover, these programs contribute to building diverse and inclusive teams, enhancing creativity, innovation, and overall organizational performance.

If you want more people in your organization to learn about internal communication, then it might be valuable to attend a conference dedicated to the topic. This encourages continuous learning and will develop communication skills they can bring back to work. 

Career Pathing and Succession Planning

Career pathing and succession planning demonstrate an organization’s commitment to employee growth and development. As a result, organizations help employees visualize their future within the company, motivating them to stay and contribute their best efforts.

#3 Recognize and Reward Employee Contributions

Recognizing and rewarding employee contributions is crucial for boosting engagement and retention. This recognition boosts employee morale and motivation, leading to increased job satisfaction and engagement. When employees feel valued and recognized, they are more likely to go above and beyond in their work, resulting in improved productivity and performance. Additionally, recognition and rewards programs contribute to employee retention by creating a sense of loyalty and commitment to the organization. 

Employees who feel appreciated are less likely to seek opportunities elsewhere. Moreover, these programs help to reinforce desired behaviors and values, aligning employee actions with organizational goals. By publicly acknowledging exceptional performance or milestones, recognition programs also inspire healthy competition and inspire others to strive for excellence. 

Within Cerkl’s research, some of the most popular topics for hospital employee newsletters are wins and team members. Material about recognizing and rewarding employees is not only a great way to make employees feel valued and appreciated, but also to increase engagement with internal communications.

Competitive Compensation and Benefits

Ensure employees are compensated fairly and receive competitive benefits packages. Conduct market research to stay updated on industry standards and make necessary adjustments to salary scales, bonuses, and other incentives. Offer benefits that cater to employees’ needs and preferences, such as health insurance, retirement plans, and flexible work arrangements.

Recognition and Rewards

Implement recognition programs to acknowledge and reward employees for their contributions and achievements. Recognition is closely aligned with employee engagement and promotes teamwork. Celebrate milestones, both personal and professional, and publicly recognize outstanding performance in your internal communications. Consider a mix of formal and informal recognition initiatives to ensure all employees feel valued and appreciated. Additionally, celebrating and recognizing achievements and contributions from diverse individuals and groups reinforces the importance of employee engagement and retention and creates a positive atmosphere. 

#4 Ensure Effective Leadership

Employee engagement figures depend to a large extent on the support of managers and how companies treat their employees.

Invest in leadership development programs to create supportive and empowering managers who encourage engagement and retention. Train leaders to communicate effectively, provide feedback, and cultivate a positive work environment. Encourage managers to build strong relationships with their team members and support their growth and development.

Employee Engagement and Retention Statistics

Statistics on employee engagement and retention reinforce the importance of effective internal communication. These numbers emphasize the positive impact of internal communication on retention as well as overall organizational performance.

We dug out a few of the most interesting recent employee retention and engagement statistics.

In an article, U.S. Engagement Hits 11-Year Low, Jim Harter, Chief Scientist of Workplace Management and Wellbeing at Gallup, states that 4.8 million fewer U.S. employees were engaged in early 2024. This is the lowest reported level of engagement since 2013. Additionally, in the first quarter of 2024, 17% of employees were actively disengaged, one point higher than the 16% for the full year of 2023 and equivalent to the percentage actively disengaged in the fourth quarter of 2023.

The Buffer State of Remote Work 2023 states that 58% of remote workers reported feeling engaged compared to 30% who were unengaged. But only 35% were “very engaged.” 

Gallagher’s State of the Sector 2023/24 report indicates that 32% of companies think that employee disengagement is one of the biggest barriers to success in 2024.

The Kincentric Global Trends in Employee Engagement 2022 report shows that higher levels of engagement are closely related to a higher level of diversity and inclusion. These organizations exhibit 8.4 times higher engagement and 5 times higher retention rates.

Employee Engagement and Retention Strategies

It’s vital to have a plan of action. Here are some strategies to get you going.

Craft an Employee Retention Plan 

An employee retention plan outlines the strategies and initiatives that an organization can implement to retain its workforce. It serves as a roadmap for driving employee engagement and satisfaction, ultimately leading to higher retention rates.

Internal communication is a large part of retaining a workforce and creating a strategic communication plan can be a part of your overall employee retention plan. 

Identify Key Drivers of Employee Engagement and Retention

Organizations should identify the key drivers that impact employee engagement and retention. These may include factors like leadership effectiveness, career growth opportunities, recognition programs, and work environment. By focusing on these, organizations can use resources and implement targeted strategies to improve engagement and retention.

For instance, nurses experience burnout for many reasons. These include feeling undervalued, poor work-life balance, no sense of belonging, and low engagement with work. However, they can use this information to identify issues and find ways to increase employee retention and engagement rates.

Develop an Employee Retention Plan Template

An employee retention plan template provides a structured framework for organizations to identify retention goals, assess current practices, and outline specific actions and timelines. The plan should address key drivers of engagement and retention, such as career development opportunities, competitive compensation and benefits, and work-life balance initiatives.

Nurture Employee Motivation and Well-Being

Motivated and well-supported employees are more likely to stay with an organization. Employers should prioritize nurturing motivation and well-being through various initiatives. This goes beyond physical health. It encompasses mental, emotional, and social aspects as well. When employees feel supported and cared for, they are more likely to demonstrate higher levels of creativity, innovation, and loyalty to the organization. Moreover, a strong emphasis on employee well-being contributes to a positive work-life balance, reducing stress and burnout and improving overall job performance.

Motivation's Role in Employee Engagement and Retention

Communicate Organizational Vision and Values

It might seem like conveying values starts during the first couple of days in the office. But it really starts from the moment organizations interview and onboard new employees. Show how you are adopting those visions from the start of your interactions. Don’t just say what the ideas are. Show prospective and new employees how you adopt them into communications and culture from the start. It is much easier to teach and reiterate values than to introduce them later. 

Internal communication channels should effectively convey the organization’s vision, mission, and values. Employees need to understand how their work contributes to the larger purpose and goals of the company. Regularly communicating the organization’s strategic direction helps employees align their efforts and feel a sense of purpose, increasing their commitment to staying with a company. 

By consistently sharing and reinforcing these values, organizations can foster a sense of purpose, alignment, and shared identity among their workforce.  Providing real-life examples and success stories that align with these values can help employees understand how they translate into action and impact the organization’s overall mission. Additionally, leaders can actively engage in open and transparent dialogues, encouraging employees to express their thoughts, concerns, and suggestions. This two-way communication promotes a sense of inclusion and belonging and allows for feedback and discussions that can further refine and strengthen organizational values. 

using employee engagement channels

Share Performance Feedback and Recognition

Regular feedback and recognition are closely aligned with employee engagement and promote teamwork. Managers should provide constructive feedback to help employees grow and improve in their roles. Recognizing employee contributions, whether through public praise, rewards, or promotions, demonstrates appreciation and motivates them to continue performing at their best. Some communications can include a recognition section or shoutouts for team/individual accomplishments.

Encourage Two-Way Communication

Two-way communication channels like employee surveys, suggestion boxes, and open forums, allow employees to share their ideas, concerns, and suggestions. By actively listening to employee feedback and acting on it, organizations demonstrate their commitment to creating a supportive and inclusive work environment. This fosters a sense of ownership and engagement among employees, ultimately contributing to their retention and engagement.

Leveraging Technology for Effective Employee Engagement and Retention

Technology plays a vital role in facilitating internal communication and boosting employee engagement. If employees aren’t given the right tools, they won’t be able to properly engage with coworkers and the company as a whole.

Employee Engagement Apps and Platforms

Employee communication apps and platforms provide a centralized hub for communication, collaboration, and recognition. These tools offer features such as real-time updates, past information, and personalized news feeds. This enables employees to connect and engage irrespective of their physical location. By leveraging technology, organizations can overcome communication barriers and cultivate a sense of belonging among remote and distributed teams. It can also increase employee engagement within the apps by allowing them to interact with more information and messaging. 

Employee engagement platforms can also help with engaging remote employees. It might be hard to set expectations with people when you’re not face-to-face. However, it can be achieved by giving each employee personalized News Digests that contain communications they care about. If they are receiving relevant, important information, then they will interact with the messages they are receiving — and you will have more engaged employees.

Gamification for Employee Engagement

It is important to consider the rising workforce when leveraging technology for internal engagement. That’s why it’s important to understand “what makes us tick” by breaking traditions and shaking up the way that work is conducted. This way, companies can adapt their internal communications for younger generation employees

Incorporating gamification elements, such as leaderboards, badges, and rewards, into internal communication platforms can make engagement more interactive and enjoyable. By gamifying communication and recognition, organizations can motivate employees to actively participate, share knowledge, and collaborate, leading to increased engagement and retention. 

Scavify shares 12 Best Examples of Gamification for Employee Engagement in 2024. Give them a try. 

Employee Engagement Survey Tools

Employee engagement surveys are valuable tools for measuring and improving engagement levels within an organization. They assess employees’ perceptions of various aspects, such as leadership, communication, and job satisfaction. You can incorporate this in messages to get feedback about different events, projects, or procedures. By utilizing specialized tools, you can collect, measure, and analyze data effectively. You can also identify areas of improvement and take necessary actions to enhance employee engagement and retention.

Communication and follow-up actions are vital in the survey process. Inform employees about the purpose of a survey, its timeline, and how you will utilize its results. 

Conducting Employee Surveys and Feedback Mechanisms

Employee surveys and feedback mechanisms are powerful tools. Surveys gather insights, identify areas of improvement, and involve employees in shaping the organization’s culture and practices. There are several types of employee surveys, each serving a distinct purpose, including engagement surveys that measure employee morale and satisfaction, and pulse surveys for real-time feedback.

Conducting regular employee engagement surveys is an effective way to measure the level of engagement within an organization. These surveys typically consist of a set of questions designed to assess employees’ satisfaction, commitment, motivation, and overall engagement. The results provide valuable insights into the factors that affect how engaged employees are. Surveys enable organizations to identify areas of improvement and develop targeted employee engagement and retention strategies.

Pulse surveys are shorter, more frequent surveys conducted at regular intervals, such as monthly or quarterly. They provide a timely snapshot of employee sentiment and engagement levels consistently. By capturing real-time feedback, organizations can address emerging issues quickly and make necessary adjustments to improve engagement.

Collecting and analyzing employee feedback and suggestions is another valuable way of measuring engagement. You can do this through various channels including suggestion boxes, focus groups, and one-on-one conversations. By actively seeking and acting on employee input, organizations demonstrate that they value their opinions and are committed to creating a supportive and engaging work environment.

Designing Effective Employee Surveys

Well-designed employee surveys include a mix of qualitative and quantitative questions that cover various aspects of the employee experience. Surveys should be anonymous, easily accessible, and designed to encourage honest feedback. It is crucial to communicate survey results and action plans transparently to foster trust and demonstrate that employee voices are heard and valued. It is also important to communicate that feedback is welcome and necessary for the organization’s success. 

employee surveys

There are several key considerations to take into account when creating impactful surveys. It is crucial to establish clear objectives and determine the specific information needed to inform decision-making. This helps ensure that survey questions are relevant and focused. Additionally, using a mix of closed-ended questions (like multiple-choice and rating scales) and open-ended questions allows for both quantitative and qualitative data collection, providing a comprehensive understanding of employee sentiments. Take care to create unbiased and neutral questions to avoid leading or influencing responses. Furthermore, survey length should be kept concise to encourage higher participation rates and minimize survey fatigue. 

Employers should emphasize anonymity and confidentiality to nurture trust and encourage honest responses. 

Analyzing and Acting on Survey Results

Analyzing survey results provides organizations with valuable information about areas of strength and sections that require improvement. By identifying trends and patterns, organizations can develop targeted action plans to address specific issues. 

It is important to involve employees in the feedback loop by sharing survey results and communicating how their feedback is shaping decision-making and organizational changes. One way organizations can incorporate quick employee feedback is through Email Blasts, which hold information as well as provide a way to gauge opinions.

Measuring Employee Engagement and Retention

Measuring Employee Engagement and Retention

To gauge the effectiveness of employee retention and engagement initiatives, organizations should measure key metrics. This is possible with an analytics dashboard that includes metrics like click rates, open rates, content stats, and more. All the data is easily accessible and in one place, making it easy to measure the success of communications.

Employee Engagement Metrics and KPIs

Key engagement survey metrics include:

  • Engagement score: A composite score that indicates the overall level of engagement within the organization. It is calculated based on responses to various survey questions related to satisfaction, motivation, and commitment.
  • Satisfaction levels: Assessing employees’ satisfaction with their work, compensation, benefits, work-life balance, and other aspects of their employment provides a snapshot of their overall contentment. It can also indicate areas of improvement and who might be leaving soon. 
  • Employee net promoter score (eNPS): This measures the willingness of employees to recommend their organization as a place to work. It indicates the level of loyalty and advocacy among employees, which is closely linked to their engagement.
  • Specific engagement drivers: Analyzing responses to specific survey questions related to factors such as leadership, communication, career development, and recognition helps identify areas of strength and areas that require improvement.

Employee Retention Metrics and KPIs

There are metrics for measuring employee retention:

  • Employee turnover rate: This is a fundamental metric for measuring retention. It quantifies the percentage of employees who leave the organization within a given time frame. Monitoring turnover rates over time helps organizations assess the effectiveness of their retention strategies and identify areas for improvement. Indicators like time and behavior can predict employee retention
  • Average length of employment: Tracking the average length of employment provides insights into the stability and tenure of the workforce. A longer average length of employment indicates higher retention rates and suggests employees are committed to the organization.
  • Early tenure turnover: Early tenure turnover refers to the rate at which employees leave the organization within the first year or two of employment. High early tenure turnover can be indicative of issues with onboarding or training. Analyzing this metric helps organizations identify opportunities to improve the employee experience during the initial stages of employment and enhance retention.
  • Internal mobility and promotion rates: Monitoring internal mobility and promotion rates provide insights into opportunities for career growth within the organization. A higher percentage of employees moving into new roles or being promoted demonstrates that the organization values talent development and invests in the growth of its employees. 
  • Absenteeism and sick leave: Tracking rates of absenteeism and sick leave can indirectly reflect employee retention. High rates of absenteeism or frequent sick leaves may indicate employee dissatisfaction, burnout, or disengagement. Monitoring these metrics can help organizations identify potential retention issues and take proactive measures to address them.
  • Performance and productivity metrics: Performance and productivity metrics such as individual and team performance evaluations, sales targets, and project outcomes, can indirectly reflect employee retention. Monitoring these metrics alongside retention rates can provide a holistic understanding of the impact of engagement on performance and organizational outcomes.

How to Improve Employee Engagement and Retention

The Cerkl Broadcast platform has a variety of features that organizations can use to improve engagement and minimize turnover. A key element is MyNews, which is designed to ensure your internal communications team can engage, inform, and retain your workforce. 

MyNews will let you know when employees aren’t engaged. Real-time alerts and cutting-edge analytics make this possible. 

It increases awareness and drives performance by enabling you to communicate better. MyNews will help you personalize communications and get the right message to the right people at the right time. 

All of this will help your organization retain high-performing employees. 

What’s Next?

We’ve talked a lot about employee engagement and how it keeps your staff on board. However, we realize how challenging it can be to evaluate employee engagement in real-time.

That’s why we’ve devised a cutting-edge employee engagement survey that will enable you to do this quickly and effectively. Don’t miss this free opportunity. You’ll find it’s a great way to start improving your internal communication strategy.


What is employee retention and engagement?

Employee retention refers to the ability of a company to retain its employees over a specified period of time. Employee engagement signifies the emotional commitment and involvement employees have toward their work, influencing their productivity, loyalty, and overall contribution to the organization.

How are motivation and engagement related to employee retention

When employees are motivated and engaged they are more likely to stay with a company. They will also contribute their skills and energy because they feel connected to their work and the goals of the organization. Therefore, positive employee engagement generally maximizes employee retention and minimizes staff turnover.

How to improve employee engagement and retention

The best way to improve employee engagement and retention is to create an environment where employees feel valued, informed, and heard. Employers should also offer opportunities for growth, foster a positive work culture, and provide ongoing recognition. They need to ensure communication is clear and offer competitive compensation, at the same time supporting a good work-life balance that minimizes stress.

What are the key factors that contribute to employee engagement and retention?

The key factors that contribute to employee retention and engagement are aligned with those needed to improve employee retention and engagement. They include supportive work culture, opportunities for growth and development, recognition for what they do, competitive compensation and benefits, open communication, work-life balance initiatives, and effective leadership that supports and values its employees.

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