facebook twitter instagram linkedin google youtube vimeo tumblr yelp rss email podcast phone blog search brokercheck brokercheck Play Pause
%POST_TITLE% Thumbnail

Turning the Tide on Employee Engagement

A recent Gallup survey found that engagement at work has cratered among U.S. employees. According to the research, only 33% of workers were engaged in 2023, representing nearly $2 trillion in lost productivity. The findings show lack of engagement among nearly every group except Baby Boomers, with older millennials and Gen Zers described as being in “dramatic decline.” Compared to four years ago, employees report feeling more disconnected from — and less satisfied with — their employers. They also express feeling less connected to the organization’s mission and purpose.

With engagement on the decline, that can mean decreased productivity, higher turnover, lower profitability, and a host of other problems for the organization. With this in mind, the company’s retirement plan can be leveraged as a powerful tool to help increase engagement and combat many of the negative sentiments among today’s workers. A robust plan that incorporates some of the following elements can signify that the company values its employees beyond their immediate output. 

  • Build trust. Plan sponsors may want to consider increasing their matching contributions or reducing a longer graded vesting schedule. In doing so, employees may perceive more immediate benefit recognition, which can cultivate a sense of being valued by their employer, boost morale, and increase loyalty to the organization. 
  • Demonstrate long-term commitment. Help employees prepare for retirement at all phases of their career progression, from onboarding and enrollment to retirement and beyond. Measures could include stepping up efforts to keep retirees in plan, when that makes sense for the organization, and offering life-stage planning tools. 
  • Encourage dialogue. Regular updates and education about the retirement plan can encourage ongoing communication between employees and management, making employees feel more heard, informed — and engaged.  
  • Empower employees with more choice and clarity. Offering HSA or Roth options can provide employees greater control over their retirement savings. At the same time, it’s imperative not to give participants so many investment choices that selection becomes overwhelming for them. Include options that are tailored to participants’ time horizons such as TDFs, and organize investment menus around clear, easy-to-understand categories that map to their stage of life and financial goals. Establish multiple channels for participants to access information that helps streamline enrollment and investment decision-making, including one-on-one advising, group sessions, written materials, and online education, as well as tools that cater to diverse learning styles.

Charting a New Course

With employee engagement on the decline, taking proactive steps to increase it can be important to maintaining productivity as well as recruiting and retaining talent. A good first step in determining which of these strategies may be most beneficial is soliciting feedback about the plan directly from employees — both formally and through informal conversation — to ascertain where there might be room for improvement.





Please contact your MCF Advisors Plan Consultant with any questions or to review your current plan and plan’s offerings.

Download Retirement Times

Return to Plan Sponsor


MCF Advisors, LLC (“MCF”) is a SEC registered investment adviser. Registration as an investment adviser does not imply a certain level of skill or training. The oral and written communications of an adviser provide you with information about which you determine to hire or retain an adviser. More information about the adviser can also be found by visiting: https://adviserinfo.sec.gov/firm/summary/130372. The above commentary is for informational purposes only. Information prepared from third-party sources is believed to be reliable though its accuracy is not guaranteed. This is not intended as an offer or solicitation with respect to the purchase or sale of any security. MCF may only transact business in those states in which it is registered, or qualifies for an exemption or exclusion from registration requirements. Please remember that past performance is not indicative of future results. Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by MCF), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog/newsletter will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful. Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions. Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog/newsletter serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from MCF. To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing. MCF is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this content should be construed as legal or accounting advice. A copy of MCF’s current written disclosure statement and customer relationship summary (“Form CRS”) discussing our advisory services and fees continues to remain available upon request. The scope of the services to be provided depends upon the needs of the client and the terms of the engagement. If you are a MCF client, please remember to contact MCF, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services.