Casual employees in retail predominantly disengaged

More than half of casual employees in retail feel disengaged at work.

This is according to a survey conducted by Humanforce, a Sydney-based global provider of workforce management solutions, which found that Australian retailers could do more to engage their casual workforces.

The survey revealed that only 42 per cent of Australian casual employees feel engaged in their work.

Engaging casual workers

Respondents to the survey revealed that the following actions are important to them in the work environment:

  • A positive and fun work culture – 54 per cent
  • Wage incentives – 52 per cent
  • Group training and learning opportunities – 52 per cent
  • Employee rewards – 45 per cent
  • An employer that shows an interest in you – 42 per cent

Humanforce Founder and Managing Director Bruce Mackenzie says it is well known that engaged employees take significantly less days off and are much more productive.

“While many retailers have recognised this by putting strategies in place for their permanent employees, many are overlooking the importance of engagement when it comes to their casual employees, which is not sustainable considering Australia has one of the highest numbers of casual workers in the world.”

The OECD Employment Outlook 2019 showed that 25 per cent of workers in Australia are casual, of which more than half report having no guaranteed hours.

Guaranteed hours challenge for many workers

The Humanforce survey reflected the fact that guaranteed hours is a challenge for many casual workers, with 60 per cent of respondents saying guaranteed shifts was the most important driver in selecting a casual employer.

Casual work is often subject to high turnover, and as the survey found, many casual workers (40 per cent) move to permanent work. Therefore, retailers need to do everything they can to build staff loyalty and reduce turnover when faced with a limited pool of available talent.

 

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