Key Differences Between Employee Engagement and Employee Satisfaction

Key Differences Between Employee Engagement and Employee Satisfaction
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Many managers and leaders make this mistake of thinking that engagement from an employee means that they are satisfied with their jobs; however, this is not the case every time. The employees are influenced by two main factors- those that thump motivation and other essential factors that impact job satisfaction.


Motivating an employee includes giving them responsibility, challenging work, and recognition, on the other hand, to ensure that they are satisfied with their role, other factors are included, such as pay and benefits, a comfortable and lively workplace, rewards, and bonuses.



Also read – 10 Common Myths Business Leaders have about Employee Engagement



Let us understand both the topics separately, and try to understand the key differences between them-

Employee Engagement

An employee can very well be engaged in a job, but not satisfied with it. It merely means that they don’t have any expectations. They come, do their required work, and simply leave at the exact punching out time.


These kinds of employees will engage in all office activities, be there when they are needed, and do all the work provided to them on time, but if they don’t have job satisfaction, they will leave the company at any given point. Retaining employees who are not satisfied with their job is a tedious task, as they are not loyal to the brand or their co-workers.


They can simply wake up one fine day and decide that the job is not working out for them, and leave without thinking of the repercussions that might happen after their exit. An engaged employee does not mean someone lazy, they are often deeply focused and invested in their work. For all you know, they might be more hardworking than the employees who have job satisfaction.


Employee engagement is an office approach where an employee gives their best to the job every day. They have goals and ambitions of their own, which they try to attain by determination and hard work. Employee engagement can’t be achieved by forcing them into doing something.


Their heart should be in it, you can’t force them to be engaged by manipulating their commitment and feelings. The employees can see through this act easily, and start developing a negative feeling against the company or the leader.


If they are engaged happily, they will treat the organization as their family, keep a clear focus on the goals and targets of the company and try to accomplish them. While the engaged employees are top performers and dedicated, if they are not satisfied, the company can lose out on an important asset.



You can make certain exceptions and rules, through which they can achieve job satisfaction too, like-


Providing the top employees with greater responsibility for their benefit, during the work hours, is extremely paramount. As the workforce nowadays comprises of a large number of millennials, and their motto is to maintain the work-life balance, providing them with that benefit might make them satisfied.


Introducing flexible work-schedule, work from home options, etc., will lead to employee satisfaction, which in turn leads to retention.



Strength realization-

Allowing the top employees to shape their role and understanding what are their strengths, demonstrates substantial job satisfaction.



Recognize and Reward-

Hardworking employees need to know that their work is being recognized and admired by colleagues as well as the seniors. Start deploying rewarding strategies, such as introducing a new trend of “Employee of the month”. This will not only help in appreciating the work of your top employees but will also compel the others to work harder.



Employee Satisfaction

Employee satisfaction is simply how satisfied or content an employee is with his/her work. Their level of satisfaction can simply be measured by taking a poll or a survey. Ask them questions based on their everyday work life, what they like, what they don’t. The survey can include workload, compensation, flexibility, teamwork, etc.


These all factors are crucial for organizations who want to keep their workers happy, satisfied, and also reduce turnover, even though job satisfaction of the employee is only a minor fragment of the overall emulsion. In fact, sometimes satisfied employees are the people that the company would be better without.


Satisfied employees don’t necessarily mean high performers, it can also mean that they are satisfied that there is no work pressure, and they are going with the flow, without any future planning, just comfortable staying in one place.


On some level, a little turnover is beneficial for the company, as the employees who are not adding value or are not a good fit for the company, leave, and make way for fresh innovation employees. On the other hand, unhealthy turnover happens when the company loses all its top employees, resulting in the loss of the company.


Therefore, the company should know the difference between engaged employees and satisfied employees, and make retention strategies accordingly.


In conclusion, engaged employees are not always satisfied with their job, whereas satisfied employees are not always a good asset to the company. Recognizing the talented employees and making a plan to retain them is what a company should do for a healthy turnover and a bright future.



For more such articles on employee management and HR, check out our blog here. You can also write to us at or give us a shout out on Twitter or Facebook.


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