skills enhancement could be the answer to a more engaged, happier and productive workplace

skills enhancement could be the answer to a more engaged, happier and productive workplace

Workers are getting restless and increasingly demanding of their employer – but this can be turned into a win-win situation.

The latest Kelly Global Workforce Index reveals that employers are continuing to confront a challenging workplace, characterised by relatively weak levels of employee engagement and commitment to work.

It’s news to no-one that the mood of the labour market remains difficult for many employers, because of slow job creation, patchy economic recovery and a restless sentiment among much of the workforce.

Top-tier leaders recognise that levels of engagement and loyalty are a key factor which drives the health of a workplace, which contributes to an organisation’s overall performance.

Highly committed and loyal workers have a direct bearing on such issues as employee attraction, retention, morale and business performance.

But there is hope at hand, and the survey suggests that skills enhancement could be the answer to a more engaged, happier and ultimately more productive workplace.

First, it’s imperative to get a clear picture of just how dissatisfied and restless the global workforce is, as revealed by the KGWI 2014 survey.

Most workers will look to leave this year

Globally, 61% of workers say they intend to look for a job with another organisation within the next year, representing a steady decline in this measure of workplace volatility.

  • In EMEA, 68% of workers intend to switch jobs, a level which has remained largely stable over the past four years.
  • In APAC, 64% say they intend to look for another job within a year, a figure which has increased over the four-year period.
  • In the Americas, there has been a significant fall in workers looking to leave their employer, which contributes to the global decline in this measure.
  • More than 70% of respondents in Denmark, Italy, Portugal, France, Australia, Sweden and India plan to switch jobs in the next year.
  • Workers in Singapore, China, Germany and Russia are the less likely to look to leave their employer.

Employee commitment – higher in APAC

Globally, less than a third (31%) of respondents say they are totally committed to their current employers, which has dropped from the 2013 KGWI survey.

Employees seem slightly more likely to say they totally committed to their current employer in APAC (29%) than the EMEA (26%) region, the 2014 survey revealed.

Commitment among employees has dropped slightly in the past year, but is still a little higher than the 2011-2012 period.

Employee loyalty

Workers were asked if, compared with a year ago, they felt more or less loyal to their employers, and the response was similar to questions regarding employee commitment.

  • Globally, just 29% of employees say they feel more loyal to their employers in 2014 than they did a year ago, a level which has been relatively steady since 2011
  • 22% of workers in EMEA reported feeling more loyal to their employers in 2014, which is a slight improvement
  • 32% of workers in APAC say they feel more loyal, continuing a downward trend which has taken place since 2011.

The answer to worker dissatisfaction is the opportunity to learn more skills

So what is more likely to make workers happier and more likely to stay with their current employer?

The answer could be in up-skilling your workers.

There is a desire among employees for skills enhancement, and this is often valued over increased pay or climbing to the next rung of the corporate ladder.

For more research from the KGWI report on how to help your workers with career development download the latest report here.