Employee engagement is top HR priority in private sector

Employee engagement is the top priority for HR workers in the private sector, but doesn’t make the top three in the public sector, according to a CIPD survey.

Employee engagement is the top priority for HR workers in the private sector, but doesn’t make the top three in the public sector, according to a CIPD survey.
The CIPD’s Outlook survey found the top three priorities for the next year for senior managers, a subset of those surveys,  were ‘managing change and cultural transformation’ (50%), ’employee engagement’ (41%), and ‘improving performance management and reward’ (38%).
The CIPD says the private sector’s emphasis on ’employee engagement’ supports findings from other CIPD research that this is key for organisations to sustain performance through turbulent times. It says its omission from the top three priorities identified by public sector respondents "may change over the coming months as the budget cuts and service delivery challenges confirmed in the Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR) are translated into action". Public sector workers identified ‘managing costs’ as their top organisation priority for the next 12 months.
The survey also showed that senior HR professionals are preparing to invest in future talent. Twenty-seven per cent of senior managers believe they will take on HR graduate trainees in the next 12 months (compared to 7% of seniors having done so over the last year).
Jackie Orme, CEO of the CIPD which is holding its annual conference this week, said: "The importance of engaging employees during this time of restructure should not be under-estimated and the survey highlights the opportunity for public sector employers to learn from the experiences of a private sector beginning to emerge from tough times. Employee engagement is an area that should feature high on the list of priorities for HR and the organisation at the best of times. But facing an almost unprecedented period of austerity, public sector HR managers will undoubtedly be looking to push this up their list of priorities in the year ahead. "





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