Our latest research, focusing on employee engagement and commitment in multinationals has just been concluded. The data for the research was collected from the employee surveys that we conducted with multinational organisations over the last 18 months.
Possibly one of the most alarming insights uncovered is the percentage of employees in multinationals that presently feel they don’t have a good workload.
A cause for concern
Due to the financial implications of the recent economic turmoil, organisations have increasingly been required to do more with less. In spite of this, these latest findings should be cause for concern.
Analysis revealed that when asked the question about their workload, just 46% of employees in multinational responded with the statement ‘I find my workload good’. Worryingly, 18% of employees responded that they feel their workload is too heavy.
Why is workload an issue?
Employees’ workload can vary quite dramatically over the course of year. This in itself is not necessarily harmful, however when employees experience too much or too little workload over a prolonged period it can lead to both psychological and physical health issues.
In addition to the negative physical effects for employees, unhealthy workloads can also impact the companies the employees work for. The negative consequences of prolonged unhealthy workloads for organisations include:
- Employee absenteeism
- Reduction in production and quality
- Increased risk of accidents
Alongside the above, extended analysis also revealed that workload has a noticeable impact on engagement and commitment.
The impact of workload on engagement
When analysing the levels of engagement and commitment for employees with varying workloads, several results stand out.
Of the employees that responded that their workload is good, more than one in three (35%) are engaged and committed. This figure is 10% higher than employees who responded too heavy, 17% higher than far too heavy and double that of employees who responded far too light and too light.
At the other end of the spectrum, there is also a similar trend for employees that are neither engaged nor committed. Around one in three employees who stated their work is either too heavy or far too light is neither engaged nor committed, whilst the figure for employees who responded too light and too heavy lies at 27% and 21% respectively.
Comparatively, just 12% of employees who answered their workload is good is neither engaged nor committed.
Percentage of employees that are neither engaged nor committed per workload
Combined, these insights show us that not only does a good workload help employees’ physical and psychological state, it also positively impacts engagement and commitment.
4 workload tips
If you are concerned about workload, our experience has found that the following four tips can help:
- Critically assess the way teams operate at least once a year. By doing so, it helps ensure that the way in which the team approaches work isn’t harming workloads.
- In cases of high workload, make every effort to get the root cause of it. Only when the cause is known can a solution be found.
- Help employees to apply proper time management to their workloads.
- Create awareness in teams about the signs of strenuous workloads. Managers are not always on hand and so creating a shared responsibility helps bring workload issues to attention before lasting damage is done.