Why 2024 is The Year of Engagement

What’s your Primary Focus for the Year? 

If you had one thing for your company to focus on for 2024, what would it be? With so many challenges organizations face in today’s ever changing business environment identifying a single point of focus for your company can be daunting.

As a solutions provider that has helped organizations optimize their digital HR practices for 18 years, we’ve landed on a theme for 2024 that feels very appropriate for the year ahead:   
Employee engagement, to be specific. 

Why focus on employee engagement instead of, oh say, growth or service or performance (all of which we considered)? Two reasons: 

  1. The world needs more of it
  2. HRIZONS is poised to support it like never before.

What is employee engagement? 

While definitions vary, employee engagement generally means the willingness of employees to go above and beyond for their organizations, their feelings of belonging and commitment to the company and its mission, and their sense of ownership over their work.  We like this definition (and comprehensive guide to employee engagement!) by our partner Qualtrics:  

“Employee Engagement is how much an employee is committed to helping their organization achieve its goals. It’s demonstrated by how employees think, feel, and act, as well as the emotional connection employees, feel towards their organization, their work, and their team.” 

Why does employee engagement matter? 

HR Executive hosts an annual survey called “What’s Keeping HR Leaders Up at Night.” The 2024 edition cites attracting and retaining top talent and improving company culture as leaders’ primary concerns heading into the year. Interestingly, Employee Engagement and Employee Experience do not rank nearly as highly.  

However, employee engagement is a key factor in employee retention. It is also plays a role in shaping (and is simultaneously shaped by) organizational culture. 

If HR leaders are truly concerned about improving their organizations’ cultures and attracting/retaining top talent, engagement efforts need play a central role. Furthermore, those efforts should encompass 

  • Top-tier HCM systems and processes across the employee journey, from hire to retire. 
  • Employee voice / employee listening programs that can assess and improve employees’ experiences. 

The world needs more engaged employees. 

According to recent Gallup data, employee engagement is stagnating, at best. Employee stress levels are higher than they’ve ever been, and feelings of connection with employers’ mission and purpose are tanking. As has been the case for years, only one third of employees report feeling actively engaged, while 16% report feeling disengaged. This leaves a whopping 50-something percent of the workforce languishing in neutral territory. 

Managers (again, according to Gallup) feel especially disenchanted. This is concerning for overall engagement as managers are often the catalyst for engagement and culture.  

Imagine what we might accomplish if we could shift even part of that demographic toward higher engagement. In addition to more productive businesses, we would see happier parents, colleagues, and neighbors: an entire half of the workforce waking up with a new sense of purpose and better mental health.  

This isn’t just an idle dream.  

It’s something we, as leaders in the HR space, can take action on. And it’s something HRIZONS is set up to support. 

We are set up like never before to support employee engagement. 

Employee engagement starts with visionary leadership and transformational HR. HRIZONS has a deep understanding of both. For nearly 11 years, we’ve been award-winning partners for companies moving to digitize their HR processes. We’ve learned how to go deeper than simply implementing or supporting HCM solutions. We serve as trusted advisors to help companies use those solutions in ways that improve the employee journey, from beginning to end. 

In 2023, we took the next step and launched our Employee Experience division. The experts we’ve hired to support EX clients come from companies like Viva Glint, Qualtrics, Culture Amp, and other employee listening platforms. They understand best practices for implementing EX programs, analyzing results, and moving the needle on employee listening. In addition to our existing partnership with employee listening platform, Qualtrics, we launched a partnership with Microsoft Viva, to support companies working with the Viva Glint solution. 

Let’s make 2024 the best year yet for employee engagement. 

Whether you’re at the start of your journey with an HCM or engagement solution or have a mature set of systems and processes in place, we’re here to help you turn “employment” into engagement

Connect with our EX leadership to learn more about how we support employee listening and experience, or contact us to learn more about how we partner with companies to optimize their HCM systems and processes.  

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