As organisations increasingly struggle to retain their current workforce as well as hire fast enough to keep up with consumer demand, global research across 11 countries from The Workforce Institute at UKG exposes a troublesome gap between employee voice and employer action that — if left unresolved — can disengage workers, fuel turnover, and hinder business performance.
Not All Employee Voices Heard
The vast majority of Indian (93%) and global (86%) employees feel people at their organisation are not heard fairly or equally – and more than a third (35%) of Indian employees and nearly half (47%) of employees globally believe that underrepresented voices remain undervalued by employers.
Indian employees feel the most passionately than the global average when it comes to feeling that employees in corporate offices are heard more (29%) compared to the global average of 17% – and 22% feel those who complain tend to be heard more compared to the global average of 16%. When it comes to performance, just over a third (34%) of Indian employees feel reliable workers and high performers are heard more, compared to the global average of 24%.
“There is troubling inequity in the feedback loop at organisations across the globe. Despite many employees feeling personally heard by their employer, the majority see significant disparities in which employees are — and not — heard,” said Chris Mullen, Ph.D., SPHR, SHRM-SCP, executive director of The Workforce Institute at UKG. “At a time when organisations are desperately vying to attract and retain top talent, people leaders must first listen and then act upon the voice of the employee in order to sustain long-term business stability and success.”
People Leaders Must Listen to Employees — or Risk Losing Them
Among all workers globally, two in three (63%) feel their voice has been ignored in some way by their manager or employer – that number jumps drastically to 86% in India – and specifically, the vast majority (93%) of younger workers in India feel their voice has been ignored – the highest of any country surveyed. Globally, a third (34%) of employees would rather quit or switch teams than voice their true concerns with management – this number jumps to more than half (55%) of Indian employees feeling this way.
“We can’t expect people to develop a sense of belonging and trust at work if they don’t feel heard or trusted by their managers, peers, or leaders.” said Sumeet Doshi, country manager, India at UKG. “Especially during uncertain times, organisations must listen to their employees, understand their concerns, and communicate frequently. In this day and age when we are moving to hyperpersonalisation of experiences, organisations should leverage technology to understand the individual’s voice in order to build a happy, productive, and engaged workforce”
Feedback Isn’t Just Good for Culture — It’s Good for Business
In India, employees with very high senses of belonging and engagement (both 88%) are more likely to feel heard than those with very low belonging (80%) or engagement (67%). This has a remarkable impact on the bottom line: Organizations are much more likely to perform well financially (88%) when their employees feel heard, engaged, and a sense of belonging.
To dive deeper into the data and learn why investing in the voices of employees should be a strategic business imperative, read The Heard and the Heard-Nots executive report.