Checked Out: Workers Disengaged 26 Percent Of Time

– Employees say better perks, more challenging assignments and less bureaucracy would help boost engagement
– Pittsburgh, Salt Lake City and Charlotte have the most engaged professionals, while Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Chicago have the least engaged workers

MENLO PARK, Calif., May 2, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — The saying goes that a company is only as good as the people it keeps. But what if those people aren’t fully engaged in their duties? According to research from staffing firm Accountemps, workers are disengaged at their jobs more than one-quarter (26 percent) of the time, on average, leaving the door open to lost productivity, low morale and turnover.

How to Improve Employee Engagement by City

When professionals were asked what would make them more engaged at work, the responses included*:

how to improve employee engagement by city
How to Improve Employee Engagement by City (PRNewsfoto/Accountemps)

Better perks (free food, nap rooms, on-site gyms)


More challenging work


Less bureaucracy/red tape


Lighter workload


More team building/work outings


A better boss




*Multiple responses permitted

View an infographic of top factors of employee engagement by city, and see data tables that show preferences by age.

employers shouldn't take a one-size-fits-all approach to improving employee engagementAdditional findings from the research:

  • PittsburghSalt Lake City and Charlotte took the top spots for most engaged workers.
  • Professionals in Los AngelesMiamiNew York and Chicago struggle most to stay inspired.
  • Respondents ages 18 to 34 said better perks (47 percent) would help their motivation most at the office, followed by more challenging work (38 percent).
  • Professionals ages 55 and older said that less red tape (35 percent) would do the trick when it comes to improving satisfaction in their day-to-day activities.
  • Employees in Chicago seek more meaningful work (44 percent).
  • Workers in Cleveland are looking for less bureaucracy at work (40 percent).
  • Perks reign supreme in Boston: 46 percent of workers want offerings such as nap rooms, free snacks or an on-site gym.

“Employers shouldn’t take a one-size-fits-all approach to improving employee engagement,” said Michael Steinitz, executive director of Accountemps. “Each worker and office environment are unique.”

Steinitz noted, “Managers should continually check in with their staff to gauge satisfaction levels and learn what motivates or potentially disengages them.” He added that anonymous employee surveys could help unearth issues, particularly if workers feel uncomfortable offering candid feedback to their boss. “Employee engagement surveys are most effective when managers share the results and communicate how they plan to make improvements.”

More advice on employee motivation can be found on the Robert Half blog.

About the Research

The survey was developed by Accountemps and conducted by an independent research firm. It includes responses from more than 2,800 workers across 28 major U.S. cities.

About Accountemps

Accountemps, a Robert Half company, is the world’s first and largest specialized staffing service for temporary accounting, finance and bookkeeping professionals. The staffing firm has more than 300 locations worldwide. More resources, including job search services and the company’s blog, can be found at

SOURCE Accountemps

For further information: Bianca De Rose, (650) 234-6022,

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