work-skill match: How to raise employee engagement and productivity

NewsNovember 18, 2021 10:00

Written by: Clare Chong


Have you ever wondered why some employees perform better in their roles than others? While some employers may shrug it off as work motivation, have you thought about how skills match could be an important factor when you place your staff in their various roles in the company?

According to this blog, there are a number of studies that support the proposition that your staff is indeed more engaged and productive if their skills match the work they do. Here’s why.

1) Workers feel that building on their strengths will make them successful 
64 percent of staff surveyed in a 2015 Strengths@ Work Survey of 1000 workers in the US agree that building on their strengths will make them more successful at work. Additionally, according to the report, 71 percent of surveyees who perceived that their managers can name their strengths at work feel more engaged and energised. 58 percent of staff employed in organisations committed to building their workers’ strengths can name the strengths of their co-workers and superiors, and think about how to use their strengths to make their work more efficient. In other words, it has become an expectation that workers have the opportunity to do what they do best each day and reap professional and personal rewards. Employers who are not cognizant of this fact would have staff who are less energised or productive at work.


2) Employees perform best when they get to harness their strengths
According to reports done by Gallup, maximising the strengths of your staff is a great way to maximise productivity. In their 2017 report of the American Workplace, employees desire roles and employers that allow them to maximise their strengths as employees to excel in positions that allow them to integrate their talent, skills, and knowledge. 
Another 2015 Gallup research also reviewed 6 outcomes of strengths intervention on workgroups performance with 1.2 million workers across 45 countries. Gallop discovered that workgroups receiving a strengths intervention improved all six outcomes (sales, profit, customer engagement, employee engagement, safety, turnover) compared to control groups. In addition, 90 per cent of the workgroups also had performance increases in the following areas:

• 10% to 19% increased sales
• 14% to 29% increased profit
• 3% to 7% higher customer engagement
• 9% to 15% increase in engaged employees
• 22% to 59% fewer safety incidents

3) Capitalising on employees’ strengths help to enhance work performance
Yet another 2014 study confirmed the positive relationship between capitalising on an individual's strengths and job performance. This study found that individuals could benefit if they were mindful of their strengths and applied them to their roles. Furthermore, teams could benefit if supervisors were familiar with the strengths of their team members and used such awareness to allocate work. Next, organisations could benefit from supporting a culture of strengths use and rolling out HR management processes to maximise individual strengths. Finally, the study concluded that encouraging the identification, use, and development of strengths in human management practices will enhance work performance and increase concentration, vitality, and passion at work.


What do you think of the above findings on how skills matching and strengths building could positively relate to work performance? What can you do as an employer to help your employees to know their strengths and apply them to the roles they perform?

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