New Data on the State of Human Connection at Work

Posted in Research Thoughts & Culture

There’s a reason why terms like “the Great Resignation,” and more recently “quiet quitting,” have captured the media’s attention and left HR and business leaders wringing their hands. The pandemic abruptly and fundamentally changed how we work – and many organizations have been trying to bring back some of that pre-pandemic magic ever since.

But now more than two years on, it’s clear the shift to different ways of working is here to stay. According to Gallup, “9 in 10 remote-capable employees prefer remote flexibility, and 6 in 10 prefer hybrid work.” Employees are also rethinking their projected tenure. According to PWC, 1 in 5 workers plans to switch jobs in the next year.

yasmina-h-p8DjPfqEhW0-unsplash

Rather than leaning on process and protocol and return-to-office deadlines, savvy HR leaders know that the best cultures are built on human connection. They are finding ways to foster relationships, strengthen networks, and create moments that matter in this new world of work – both in person and digitally.

So what is the current state of human connection at work? How are employers facilitating or hindering these interactions? Enboarder recently surveyed 1,000 full-time U.S. employees to find some answers and the results were eye-opening. Full results from the survey will be announced on October 11th, but here are a few high-level takeaways:

1) Coworker connections matter

We asked people who made the biggest impact on helping them feel connected. Nearly two-thirds of respondents (63%) cited their coworkers and peers, 25% cited their manager, 10% cited company leadership, and 2% cited HR.

jason-goodman-0K7GgiA8lVE-unsplash

2) Yes, the office has a place in the future of work

Although most people are looking for more flexibility and autonomy in where and how they work, they still crave connection. We asked hybrid and full-time in-office employees about what they feel are the most valuable in-office activities and their benefits. More than half (57%) cite the ability to form stronger relationships and connections with co-workers as the top benefit of working in the office.

priscilla-du-preez-XkKCui44iM0-unsplash

3) Connection drives business metrics

This survey complements extensive research showing the relationship between an employee’s sense of connection and increased productivity, creativity, and collaboration. In fact, connected employees were twice as likely to agree their workplace motivates them to go above and beyond their job responsibilities.

john-schnobrich-2FPjlAyMQTA-unsplash

4) Managers are struggling to drive connection

Very disconnected employees were twice as likely to say it’s because their manager doesn’t provide much support and/or invest in their professional development.

linkedin-sales-solutions-W3Jl3jREpDY-unsplash

Stay tuned for our full download on this new research and practical ways you can leverage the data to make a business case for programs that drive better human connections across the entire employee journey.