Employee Engagement

7 Must Have Employee Engagement KPIs | Track & Optimize

7 Must Have Employee Engagement KPIs | Track & Optimize


Employee engagement is the emotional commitment employees have to their organization and its goals.

Engaged employees care about their work and company and are willing to go the extra mile. They drive innovation, productivity, and business growth.

Measuring engagement allows companies to track workforce performance over time.

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are metrics that provide insights into levels of engagement. Monitoring KPIs enables organizations to identify problems early and improve.

This article explores the most critical employee engagement KPIs. It covers simple formulas to calculate each metric and evidence-based tips to enhance them. With the right KPIs, companies can optimize engagement, productivity, and retention.

simple abstract illustration of  A group of employees collaborating in a meeting, warm colours

What are Employee Engagement KPIs?

Employee engagement KPIs are metrics used to measure and track employee satisfaction, commitment, and performance across an organization. In simple terms, these KPIs provide insights into the level of engagement amongst employees.

Some of the most common and crucial employee engagement KPIs include:

  • Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) - This metric measures employees' willingness to recommend their workplace to others. It's calculated based on responses to the question "How likely are you to recommend this company to a friend or colleague?" on a 0-10 scale. A higher eNPS indicates higher employee satisfaction and loyalty.

  • Turnover rates - The rate at which employees voluntarily leave an organization. A high turnover rate often signals poor engagement and dissatisfaction.

  • Absenteeism - The number of days employees are absent from work. High absenteeism could indicate disengagement.

  • Employee satisfaction - Measured via surveys and feedback. Gives insights into how content and fulfilled employees feel at work.

  • Productivity - Metrics that track employee output and efficiency. Engaged employees are often more productive.

  • Performance ratings - Scores that evaluate employee performance and productivity. Engaged employees often receive better scores.

  • Participation in employee programs - The percentage of employees who take part in initiatives like training, events, surveys etc. Active participation signals engagement.

Tracking these KPIs provides data-backed insights into the engagement levels across an organization. They help identify problem areas and optimize initiatives to boost satisfaction, productivity and performance.

Simple & cost effective way to increase employee engagement

Why Measure Employee Engagement?

Engaged employees drive organizational success through increased productivity, profitability, and loyalty.

Tracking engagement KPIs provides critical insights to identify weak engagement areas, benchmark over time, assess initiatives, and highlight improvement opportunities. This enables better talent management and retention.

Measuring engagement is essential for organizations to understand and improve the employee experience. Traditional metrics like satisfaction surveys have limits. Engagement goes deeper to assess emotional commitment and discretionary effort.

KPIs make engagement tangible and actionable. They move from general vibes to specific, measurable benchmarks. For example, tracking eNPS uncovers how many promoters versus detractors you have and their impact.

Analytics reveal where to focus. Measuring engagement across the employee lifecycle exposes weak spots. You can see early warning signs like high turnover among new hires. Or low participation in learning programs by tenured staff.

Trends provide an engagement pulse check. Regular monitoring shows if initiatives like new onboarding programs improve engagement over time. Or if engagement declines during organizational change.

Benchmarking enables context. Comparing to industry benchmarks helps gauge if engagement levels are relatively good or bad. And demonstrates progress against other organizations.

In today’s tight talent market, engaged employees represent a competitive advantage. Organizations who regularly measure and act on engagement metrics will thrive. Those who fly blind risk disengaged, dissatisfied teams with poor performance.

simple abstract illustration of  An employee participating in a team-building activity, warm colours

Calculating Key Employee Engagement Metrics

Employee engagement is crucial for organizational success, as engaged employees are more productive, profitable, safer, and less likely to leave their jobs. To measure and track engagement, HR professionals calculate specific metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs).

The most critical employee engagement metrics to calculate regularly include:

  • Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) - Measures employees' likelihood to recommend your company as a place to work on a 0-10 scale. Positive scores (9-10) indicate promoters, passive scores (7-8) indicate passives, and detractors (0-6) indicate disengaged employees. Calculate the % of promoters minus % of detractors to get the final eNPS.

  • Employee satisfaction score - Often measured via annual surveys, this metric tracks employees' overall satisfaction working at your company. Look at satisfaction trends over time and across departments.

  • Employee retention rate - The % of employees who remain at your company over a set time period. A high retention rate indicates engaged, happy employees.

  • Absenteeism rate - The % of total work days lost to unscheduled absences. High absenteeism may indicate disengagement. Track reasons for absenteeism.

  • Employee turnover rate - The % of employees who voluntarily leave your company over a set period. High turnover indicates unhappiness and disengagement.

Regularly tracking these metrics provides insight into overall engagement levels and problem areas needing improvement. HR can then implement targeted initiatives to boost engagement.

Simple & cost effective way to increase employee engagement

KPI 1: Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS)

The Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) is one of the most important employee engagement KPIs to track. It measures employee loyalty and satisfaction on a scale of -100 to 100.

Here's how it works:

You survey your employees asking just one simple question: "How likely are you to recommend [Company] as a place to work?"

Employees respond on a 0 to 10 scale. Based on their score, employees fall into one of three categories:

  • Promoters (9-10) - Loyal enthusiasts who will keep working for you and refer others.
  • Passives (7-8) - Satisfied but unenthusiastic employees who are vulnerable to competitive offers.
  • Detractors (0-6) - Unhappy employees who can damage your brand and impede growth through negative word-of-mouth.

To calculate the eNPS, you take the percentage of Promoters and subtract the percentage of Detractors. This gives you a score between -100 and +100.

A positive score indicates you have more Promoters than Detractors. An eNPS above 30 is excellent, while above 0 is generally good. A negative score means you have work to do to improve engagement!

The eNPS offers a simple, standardized way to measure and compare employee loyalty over time. Tracking it regularly helps spot trends and quickly address engagement issues. No wonder it's a favorite HR KPI!

simple abstract illustration of  A diverse group of employees working together, warm colours

KPI 2:Turnover Rate

Keeping track of your employee turnover rate is a critical employee engagement KPI. This metric tracks the rate at which employees leave your organization over a set time period, usually a month, quarter, or year.

To calculate turnover rate, you simply divide the number of employee separations during the time period by the average number of employees during that same time frame.

For example, if you had 10 employees leave over the past year, and your average number of employees was 100, your turnover rate would be 10%.

Monitoring turnover gives you insight into the overall health and culture of your organization. High turnover often indicates problems with employee satisfaction, engagement, compensation, growth opportunities, or management. It's expensive to continually recruit and onboard new hires. High turnover also negatively impacts productivity and service quality as new employees learn their roles.

A best practice turnover rate depends heavily on your industry and region. For example, the average turnover rate in 2021 was 57.3% for the hospitality industry, but just 13.2% for federal government employees. As a general rule, aim to keep your turnover rate below 10% if possible.

Regularly tracking turnover rate allows you to spot negative trends and dig into any underlying issues. If the metric spikes, use anonymous exit interviews and engagement surveys to identify problems early. Addressing challenges quickly will help you retain top talent over the long-term.

Simple & cost effective way to increase employee engagement

KPI 3: Absenteeism

Absenteeism is a key performance indicator that measures the total time employees miss from work compared to their scheduled hours. It is calculated by dividing total absent time by total hours scheduled to work.

A high absenteeism rate is a red flag for poor employee engagement and job satisfaction.

Employees who feel disconnected from their work and colleagues will be more likely to call in sick or take unauthorized time off. On the flip side, companies with engaged employees tend to have lower absenteeism.

To calculate your absenteeism rate:

  • Add up the total number of hours employees were absent for the period (sick days, unauthorized absences, etc).

  • Divide by the total number of hours employees were scheduled to work.

  • Multiple by 100 to convert to a percentage.

An absenteeism rate above 2-3% is considered high. It suggests employees don't feel motivated to show up consistently. Absenteeism is expensive - costing U.S. companies up to $84 billion annually in lost productivity.

To reduce absenteeism, focus on strengthening company culture, communication, recognition programs and other drivers of engagement.

Make sure employees feel their work has purpose and they have opportunities to develop. Foster an inclusive environment where people feel valued. Proactively addressing absenteeism will improve productivity, morale and the bottom line.

simple abstract illustration of  An employee sharing their ideas in a brainstorming session, warm colours

KPI 4: Employee Satisfaction

Employee satisfaction is a crucial metric that provides insight into how content and engaged your employees feel. This key performance indicator is typically measured through anonymous employee satisfaction surveys.

The results of these surveys allow you to identify areas of strength and weakness across various aspects of the employee experience, such as company culture, manager relationships, compensation, work-life balance, and more.

When analyzing employee satisfaction survey results, look at the percentage of employees who respond as "satisfied" or "very satisfied."

High satisfaction rates indicate you have happy and engaged employees who enjoy their work and workplace. However, low satisfaction warns of potential problems that could eventually lead to decreased productivity and high turnover if not addressed.

Regularly monitoring employee satisfaction identifies opportunities to improve policies, management, training, workplace environment, and other elements that impact the employee experience.

This allows you to take targeted action to increase satisfaction and engagement over time. Ultimately, high employee satisfaction links to better individual and organizational performance. Make it a priority to track this KPI.

Simple & cost effective way to increase employee engagement

KPI 5: Employees Productivity

Employee productivity is a crucial metric that all organizations should track.

At its core, employee productivity measures how efficiently employees complete their work. While the specific productivity metrics depend on the industry and roles, some examples include:

  • For sales teams, look at metrics like number of sales made, deals closed, or revenue generated. Compare these to goals or past performance.

  • For support teams, track tickets resolved, customer issues fixed, or calls handled per representative. See how these stack up to service level agreements.

  • In operations roles, examine output metrics like units produced, tasks completed, or projects delivered. Benchmark against production targets.

Monitoring productivity over time is key. This allows you to spot trends and emerging problems early. You can also see the impact of any process changes you implement.

Comparing productivity against targets is equally important. This shows you where teams are excelling and which areas need improvement. Just be sure targets are realistic and aligned to overall business objectives.

With the right productivity KPIs, you gain crucial visibility into organizational and employee performance. This ultimately helps you optimize processes to boost efficiency, engagement, and results.

simple abstract illustration of  An employee participating in a company event or social gathering, warm colours

KPI 6: Performance Ratings

Employee performance ratings are a crucial employee engagement KPI to track. Looking at the percentage of employees receiving high performance ratings gives insight into how engaged and invested employees are in their work.

High performance ratings indicate employees who go above and beyond expectations. These employees take initiative, innovate, collaborate effectively, and drive results. They are intrinsically motivated to do excellent work.

In contrast, employees receiving low performance ratings are likely disengaged. They do the bare minimum to get by and lack the intrinsic motivation to excel.

Tracking the percentage of high performers over time provides an objective metric for employee engagement levels company-wide. If this percentage drops, it may indicate falling engagement. If it improves, engagement initiatives are working.

Segmenting data by department also provides actionable insights. Departments with exceptionally high or low percentages of high performers reveal where engagement efforts should be focused.

Performance ratings offer a quantifiable snapshot into workforce engagement and performance. Monitoring this KPI provides the visibility needed to maintain and improve employee engagement over time.

Simple & cost effective way to increase employee engagement

KPI 7: Program Participation

Employee participation in internal programs is a key indicator of engagement and satisfaction.

The program participation KPI measures the percentage of employees who take part in initiatives like training, events, committees, volunteering opportunities, and more.

A high participation rate shows that employees are invested in the organization and enthusiastic about personal development and collaboration.

It also suggests that your internal programs are appealing and delivering real value. On the flip side, low participation may indicate poor program quality, ineffective communication, or disengaged employees.

To calculate this metric, simply divide the number of active program participants by the total number of employees. Aim for at least 60-70% participation as a sign of good engagement. Make sure to track program sign-ups over time to spot trends.

There are a few ways to boost participation:

  • Get leadership buy-in and have managers promote programs directly to their teams.
  • Communicate the benefits of each program and how they align with company values.
  • Offer incentives like rewards, recognition, or compensation for participating.
  • Survey employees regularly to identify new programs they would be excited about.
  • Make participation easy by scheduling programs at convenient times and locations.

By encouraging more employees to take advantage of internal initiatives, you create a culture of learning and development while also gathering valuable engagement insights. The program participation KPI delivers actionable data to help you create an engaging, high-performance work environment.

simple abstract illustration of  An employee providing support to a colleague, warm colours

Best Practices for Tracking Employee Engagement KPIs

The key to improving employee engagement is being able to accurately track and measure it. While annual engagement surveys can provide helpful insight, relying solely on them means you’re measuring engagement at a single point in time.

To truly understand engagement levels across your organization, it’s important to track engagement KPIs (key performance indicators) on an ongoing basis.

The best way to get a well-rounded view is to use a combination of qualitative and quantitative metrics.

Quantitative data like retention rates and absenteeism provide hard numbers, while qualitative data from pulse surveys and exit interviews gives more context around how employees feel. You’ll want to set goals and benchmarks for each KPI to give you something to measure progress against.

It’s also important to analyze trends over time rather than just looking at one off data points.

Segmenting data by department, role, tenure and other factors can uncover issues specific to certain groups of employees. Leveraging engagement software makes it easy to automatically track KPIs on a continuous basis, while pulse surveys can supplement your annual engagement survey with more frequent check-ins.

Following these best practices will provide the insights you need to pinpoint areas for improvement and optimize engagement across the employee lifecycle.

Simple & cost effective way to increase employee engagement

Using KPIs to Improve Employee Engagement

Employee engagement is critical for organizational success, but it can be challenging to measure and improve. The key is to use data and insights to guide your efforts.

Start by identifying engagement KPIs that are lagging. Common examples include turnover rate, absenteeism, employee satisfaction scores, and productivity metrics.

Dig into the reasons behind low scores through focus groups, surveys, and one-on-one interviews. This will uncover the specific drivers of disengagement so you can target the root causes.

Next, develop targeted action plans to address the biggest engagement gaps. For example, if communication is an issue, implement new channels for employees to provide feedback and get information.

If development opportunities are lacking, expand training programs and mentorships.

As you roll out initiatives, communicate updates and progress to employees. Showcase measurable improvements in KPIs and provide examples of changes being made based on their feedback. This demonstrates you are listening and reinforces that their voices matter.

It’s also important to celebrate wins. Recognize employee accomplishments, milestones, and contributions publicly. This positive reinforcement boosts morale.

Finally, foster an engaging culture day-to-day. Encourage collaboration, growth, open communication, and transparency. Make engagement a continual process, not a one-off project. The payoff will be seen in rising KPIs and an empowered, invested workforce.

simple abstract illustration of  An employee contributing to a company initiative or project, warm colours


Tracking employee engagement KPIs like eNPS, turnover, and productivity provides valuable insights into the employee experience.

These key metrics reveal the levels of engagement and satisfaction within an organization. Leaders can use this data to inform strategies and programs aimed at improving engagement across the board.

Consistently measuring and acting on these engagement metrics leads to better business results over time.

By keeping a pulse on engagement, companies create a positive employee experience that drives retention, productivity, and advocacy. The outcome is an engaged, empowered workforce that delivers results.

So in summary, adopting a few critical engagement KPIs and optimizing them through data-driven action plans pays dividends. Companies that prioritize tracking and improving employee engagement reap the benefits of higher performance.