Employee Engagement Guide

Employee engagement reflects employee experience.

Employee engagement is important for everyone who works at UO, including faculty, officers of administration, classified employees, graduate employees, and student employees. It represents an employee’s emotional commitment to an organization; it is reflected in an individual's effort and actions within the workplace. The degree to which someone is engaged at work directly impacts their employment experience, their individual effort and actions, and their overall sense of belonging.

Engagement is about the culture that we want. It is the exceptional experience we seek to provide to our students and their families and seek to create for everyone who works at the UO. Active engagement and exceptional employee experience gets us there. 

When individual goals are aligned with the organization’s strategic goals and when every member of the UO community works towards a standard of job performance excellence and are engaged, the university is able to create an exceptional experience for the UO community and all who work here.

Engagement is a shared responsibility.

Engagement is the responsibility of every member of the UO community from leaders to individual contributors. Here is how responsibility for engagement breaks down, and some steps you can take to ensure engagement not only within yourself, but among your team(s).*


The University of Oregon

  • Provide resources — human, technical and financial.
  • Set overall direction and vision and remove barriers.

Academic and administrative leaders such as
deans, vice presidents, unit heads,
department heads, program directors
and their management teams.

  • Understand and communicate the importance of creating a culture of engagement.
  • Reinforce values and direction through role modeling, actions, and decisions.

Managers & Supervisors
Anyone who supervisors the work of others,
directs work, or is responsible for the
management of an academic or administrative program, unit, department, or team.

  • Create an environment in which engagement can happen.
  • Translate organizational goals and visions to team priorities, goals, and tasks.
  • Provide ongoing feedback and development for every team member.

A group of individuals working on the
same project or within the same unit or division
to collectively achieve common goals.

  • Create the team’s culture.
  • Develop and implement goals and plans to drive engagement.
  • Reinforce good work and communicate team needs.

Each individual contributor across all
employee groups - faculty, officers of administration,
classified employees, graduate employees,
student employees.

  • Maintain their own engagement.
  • Create and implement goals and plans to enhance engagement.
  • Support the engagement of others and the team.

Engagement makes a difference.

Engaged employees are proven to be more productive, are absent less often, and have fewer safety incidents, among other benefits. Here are just some of the ways that engagement makes a difference.*


41% less absenteeism

70% fewer safety incidents

17% higher productivity

10% higher customer satisfaction

Lower levels of stress

Lower levels of anxiety and depression

*Adapted from resources provided by Gallup, Inc.

Guide to Employee Engagement

Managers & Supervisors Strategies

Employee engagement is critical to our success and requires proactive planning and outreach. Employee engagement is not about pushing for more productivity, it is about quality of experience. Academic and administrative managers and supervisors play a key role in developing and encouraging a culture of engagement. Their direct connection and relationships at the individual level places them in a uniquely-situated role to impact employee engagement and the employee experience.

The manager's toolkit support supervisors in their unique role by providing strategies and action items they can incorporate into their existing work as they seek to develop and maintain strong working relationships with the people they supervise and support.

Employee Strategies

Building engagement relies on daily connection. You can easily incorporate individual strategies into your day to strengthen relationships in the workplace, enhance your own job satisfaction, and support an engagement culture within your unit or department.

Engagement Spotlight - Finding Connection at Work

The antidote to workplace disconnection is promoting friendship and meaningful connection at work. Studies have shown that building close relationships with colleagues is one of the most important factors in determining job satisfaction. Many articles and studies in recent years have taken a closer look at connection in the workplace, especially with the growing number of remote and hybrid workers. The strategies and insights are applicable regardless of work modality. We spend a considerable amount of time each week working, so we should not underestimate the importance of having friendships at work and the impact that social connection has on our well-being.

Feeling connected to one another is a key component of fostering a caring and productive workplace, a pillar of employee engagement. Information, resources, and suggested actions for promoting a caring and productive workplace are included in the UO Employee Engagement Guide

Employee Tip:

Seek out connection at work to build trust, leverage support, and beat loneliness.

Learn More

Manager Tip:

Build a connected workplace to help your team gain trust, show support, celebrate the highs, and bounce back from any lows.

Learn More