One third of organisations are not including measurement around health, safety and wellbeing as part of their approach to employee engagement following the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s despite an increasing number of organisations now implementing return to the workplace strategies.

Almost a third of organisations also don’t believe current engagement approaches have given them a sufficient level of understanding and segmentation of their employees during the pandemic, suggesting some businesses are not fully prepared or equipped for an effective return to the workplace.

These are the findings of a poll conducted during ENGAGE’s recent webinar, Engaging employees for the “new normal” – are you prepared?  The event highlighted the fact that, while many businesses have built up a huge amount of goodwill during the COVID-19 crisis, and teams across all sectors have proven their agility and adaptability to new ways and places of working, the way forward for many is still unclear.

Approaches to leadership also came under the spotlight during the webinar. A quarter of attendees stated that their organisation still based leadership measurement on traditional aspects such as strategic thinking or executing for results, rather than including relational aspects such as humanity, humility or openness.

Andy Brown, CEO at ENGAGE, explains: “How we redefine engagement and leadership for the long-term has to change to combine a now-essential focus on wellbeing with the other factors we know drive wider business performance.  COVID-19 has forced organisations to go back to the basics in terms of employees’ hierarchy of needs – including health, safety and wellbeing – but there is still a significant proportion of businesses who are yet to make this adjustment.”

Event attendees, including HR directors, chief people officers, senior HR business partners and heads of engagement from a range of UK and global organisations, were challenged to consider how comfortable and how prepared they are for their teams to return to the workplace.

The findings support a recent study conducted by ENGAGE in partnership with YouGov , which showed that over half of UK workers are uncomfortable about a return to the workplace.

In response, ENGAGE has outlined the key steps that business leaders need to take to be prepared for a changed future of work. This includes redefining employee engagement to reflect the reality of today’s new normal, redefining how leaders need to behave, and, critically, adjusting the ways in which we measure both of these.

Brown concludes: “We are now in a new world of work. How we have previously defined, measured and acted on leadership and engagement simply doesn’t support future business success. Just as our organisations need to be agile and flexible, our engagement approaches must to be able to measure and react to events as they happen, integrate to give us a holistic view of our businesses, and provide clear, data-driven insight for swift decision-making.”

Access to the full ENGAGE webinar, Engaging employees for the “new normal” – are you prepared? Is available on demand here: