Skip to content

Original post: HR Perception vs Reality, Kenexa Blog

As HR professionals, how tuned in are we to what our employees think and feel about our organization? This year, Kenexa set out to answer this question by asking the same questions of both HR professionals and employees around attitudes and engagement. The results were disconcerting. Gaps exist between employees and employer perceptions across a variety of topics from benefits to retention.

For more information, check out the free Kenexa white paper “Employee Attitudes and Engagement” and discover how HR’s perception of engagement, pride and retention compares to the reality for employees today.


69 percent of employers believe employees are engaged, while only 34 percent of employees claim to be. Engagement means different things to different people. For employers, engagement can be represented by employee productivity, attendance and development. For employees, engagement may be more about feelings than actions.


81 percent of HR professionals think employees would recommend the organization to a friend. Only 38 percent actually would. If your employees aren’t fully engaged, they might consider leaving the organization. Bringing a friend into an organization that you aren’t fully engaged with might affect a personal relationship—a risk many aren’t willing to take.

Fair Benefits

71 percent of HR professionals think the organization has fair benefits while only 48 percent of employees agree with this statement. Communication is key for employees to understand their benefits package and how much the organization spends on their benefits, particularly when it comes to health care. Employees might only notice when they pay more out of pocket for benefits, when in reality both employees and employers are sharing a growing cost.


53 percent of HR professionals think they provide fair compensation compared to only 30 percent of employees. After a few years of tight budgets, organizations are starting to give reasonable increases, but not yet at pre-recession levels. Focus on key employees to ensure top talent is compensated fairly.


83 percent of HR professionals think their employees plan to stay for the next year. 41 percent of employees agree with this statement. With engagement low and belief that compensation and benefits aren’t fair, it should come as no surprise that employees aren’t committed to their organization. Moreover, through the recession, many employees stayed with their organization out of a need for security. Now that organizations are hiring again, loyalty starts to waver.

So how can we resolve these gaps in perception? Through communication and manager training. Even the best intended HR programs fall flat without proper communication. Often times our employees aren’t fully aware of all the organization is doing for them or how much the organization is spending on programs. Moreover, all the communication in the world won’t offset a poorly informed manager. Managers need to be trained not only on understanding and evangelizing the company message, but also on bringing concerns back to HR so employee issues can be addressed.

50 thoughts on “Does HR Really Get It?”

  1. HR can’t see the reality (at the time being) as being a sub-culture of an organization where operational management leads (mostly run by engineers).

    Engaging them into seeing, and perceiving more of what is going on in an organization, employees shall have more freedom to share their experiences at the workplace, not that the boss, or their peers haunt them in the end.

Comments are closed.

Contact Us