Employee engagement has always been a great concern for organizations around the globe. Because it is considered one of the major antecedents of organizational performance and growth. Employee engagement has been defined as a ”positive and fulfilling state that is characterized by the vigor, and absorption of employees” Researchers believe that higher employee agreement means employees are having a positive mental state work with more interest, and are efficient and effective at the workplace. Employees’ engagement is having a positive impact on organizational performance, and employees’ actions. It is also having an inverse relation with employee turnover as well. Employers also use employees’ engagement as a tool for talent management and employee; retention.
Employee engagement is positively linked to job security. Whereas, Jo security has always been a big concern for business leaders and even individuals as well. Even earlier the COVID-19 pandemic was observed, employees at various organizations faced uncertainty and job insecurity concerning the rapidly changing working environment related to dynamic shifts in technology, economic fluctuations, globalization, and political insecurity. Organizational and world leaders were facing challenges to ensure people their job security and employment stability for a long time. Employees’ perception towards job insecurity and unconscious perception of losing the job increased while observing organizational restructuring and rapidly identifying an increase in the scale-downs of the businesses.
Thus, things were challenging about the employees’ engagement concerning job security away even beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. The situation was further aggregated after the epidemic of COVID-19. The businesses were shut down, some of the leaders were forced to take unprecedented decisions to suspend their business activities. Just like Silver’s decisive action to suspend NBA’s season amid COVID-19. With the decisive action by Silver, the USA government also started to shut down businesses and economic activities in the United States, The National Hockey League (NHL), Pakistan Super League (PSL), Indian Premier League (IPL), and Major League Baseball (MLB), etc. were all suspended immediately after a ripple action by Silver to restrict the spread of COVID-19.
The postponement of businesses and economic activities left too much impact on job insecurity. As result, people started worrying about lay-offs and the fear of the pandemic left a lot of uncertainties and ambiguity in the minds of people around the globe. It was a challenging task for the employers to make sure the employees’ engagement must not get hurt anymore. Because the pandemic left everyone in panic and uncertainty. As result, business leaders asked their workers to work virtually from the comfort of their homes to make sure economic activities must not completely restricted.
The developing countries started fearing their people who were employed in the developed countries and they were sending remittances back to their families. Because, after the business started losing profits and countries were falling short of their potential target of achieving a certain level of GDP had to take some bold and pivotal actions to make sure their sustainability. Because of the pandemic, the migrant workers had more fear of losing their job than the domestic workers. It once again put a question mark on the employees’ engagement and job certainty.
According to the Labor migration data, there were 232 migrated workers worldwide. It is estimated that there are around 14 million migrant workers only in the United States alone. All these workforces yet having the uncertainty of job security and employees’ engagement once again is kept unnoticed.
Politicians also made some bold decisions to restrict the spread of Coronavirus. Which provided people of some nations to have relief and certainty that their lives are important along with their jobs. New Zealand is one of the examples of these nations. The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern had a decisive response to restrict the spread of COVID-19 to provide some sigh of relief to the people residing in New Zealand about their job security, employees’ engagement, and economic sustainability.
“Please be strong, be kind, and unite against COVID-19” these words of Ardern were followed by people around the globe as a direction in the uncertain environment and provided some relief to focus back on their work. Acting with urgency along with communicating with transparency paid off to people in the sense to get some hope to look forward in the difficult time of the pandemic situation to focus and engage back on work.
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