An Overview of the Engagement Manager Career Path

An Overview of the Engagement Manager Career Path

What makes a successful Employee Engagement Manager? In this article, we'll cover qualifications, job expectations, and salary data for this in-demand role!

An Overview of the Engagement Manager Career Path

So you're thinking about a career path in Employee Engagement Management. Great!

With employee engagement proving to enhance team performance, productivity, and loyalty, Employee Engagement Managers are becoming increasingly important roles in the workplace.

They are the bedrock of any recession-proof business, helping to build and maintain relationships with their most important assets - their human capital.

But what does it take to be a successful Employee Engagement Manager? In this article, we'll cover qualifications, job expectations, career growth opportunities, and salary data to help you make an informed decision.

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What is an Employee Engagement Manager?

“In my role as Employee Engagement Manager, I seek to create community, champion culture, and support our values." - Matt Samuels, EEM, MountainSeed

According to a study by Oxford University, happier employees are 19% more productive, so its no wonder that a 2021 Willis Towers Watson global survey found that 92% of employer surveyed will be prioritizing employee experience over the next coming years.

This is where the rise of the Employee Engagement Manager job  comes in. A fairly new role in the world of HR, but nonetheless a very important one.

It's a role that specializes in building and maintaining relationships between the employer and employee - helping to create an environment where everyone feels valued, supported, and empowered.

They ensure that the organization’s policies are properly communicated to employees, help foster a positive working environment, and work to build a culture of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. They also typically act as the point of contact for both management and staff to ensure that any grievances or concerns are addressed in a timely manner.

Essentially, they build trust with employees by understanding their needs and delivering effective solutions, while also leading employee engagement projects, virtual get-togethers, and offering career advice.

A typical day for an Employee Engagement Manager usually involves analyzing employee engagement surveys and people data, developing strategic engagement plans, and implementing changes to improve internal communications and productivity.

Employee Engagement Managers also often work with executives in order to create incentives for employees and ensure that teams are working together efficiently. They must also communicate effectively with stakeholders to ensure the success of their initiatives and have excellent problem-solving skills in order to succeed in their role.

A team of coworkers laughs together while working on a project. Featured in "overview of the employee engagement manager career path" blog

Qualifications and Job Expectations of an Employee Engagement Manager

According to the employee engagement manager job descriptions posted on Indeed in the last 3 years, 53% of these full-time job titles require a Bachelor’s Degree, while only 19% required a Master’s Degree.

Evidently, while higher education may be preferable (86% of those working in an Engagement Management role hold at least a Bachelor’s Degree) for an entry-level role in engagement management - there is no set degree subject requirement.

Of course, qualifications in Human Resources, Business Administration, or Psychology are useful in Engagement Management roles. Though, if you have the relevant experience, skills, and have already demonstrated a good understanding of Employee Engagement Management, you may be able to enter the field without further qualifications.

Such employee engagement manager skills required, include:

  • Understanding of employee engagement strategies and practices
  • Project management
  • Relationship management
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Problem-solving abilities
  • Organizational skills
  • Analytical skills

Furthermore, Engagement Managers must have the organizational abilities and account management skills to manage multiple projects at once, as well as the ability to meet deadlines and ensure that their team members are working efficiently.

The role requires embodying and relaying the company’s values, therefore, the need for excellent interpersonal skills and an understanding of the organization’s culture are an absolute must.

a woman in business clothing laughs while talking to a coworker. Featured in "Overview of the Engagement Manager Career Path" blog.

Career Growth Opportunities for Engagement Managers

The Employee Engagement Management field offers excellent career growth opportunities. Depending on your current experience level, Employee Engagement Manager roles can range from entry-level to senior management.

The typical career path starts with an Engagement Manager role, then progresses to a Senior Engagement Manager, followed by Engagement Lead roles such as a Community Engagement Director.

Traditionally, it can take two years of experience in an entry-level Engagement Manager role to reach a Senior Engagement Manager position. However, as Engagement Management is such an in-demand field, the opportunities for career progression can be much quicker if you have the right experience and skills.

You can also move laterally in Employee Engagement Management, taking on similar jobs in Project Management, or even an HR Business Partner, if you want to focus more on the people and development aspects of Engagement Management.

Salary Data for Engagement Managers

The salary for an Engagement Manager can vary significantly depending on experience, location, and employer. In the US, the average salary per year is $87,596.

This will increase in line with experience, knowledge, and qualifications. However, if we focus on Employee Engagement Managers in senior positions in the US (typically around 8+ years of experience), you may expect to earn up to $136,000+ annually.

How Will You Make a Difference as an Employee Engagement Manager?

Employee Engagement Managers play a key role in driving employee satisfaction and retention. They develop strategies to ensure that employees have a positive experience with the company, as well as make sure that the organization is living up to its core values.

Speaking to some Employee Engagement Managers, the overall consensus is that their main objective is to create a safe place for people to work, where employees are not only engaged and motivated but also feel valued and respected.

Essentially, they strive to create a workplace environment that encourages collaboration, innovation, and creativity.

"For us, it's all about the act of gratitude and appreciation for our team members. I'm always thinking about how I can better the culture of our organization through the power of transparency and consistency." - Jennifer Franklin, EEM, American Auto Shield

By taking on an Engagement Management role, you have the opportunity to make a real difference within your organization and help to improve the overall employee experience business bottom line. You will be the go-to problem solver who can think on their feet and apply their knowledge to create successful solutions that exceed all expectations.

A screenshot of team challenges hosted by American Auto Shield on Cooleaf. Featured in "overview of the engagement manager career path" blog.
American Auto Shield's Engagement Manager, Jennifer Franklin, uses Cooleaf to plan new and exciting activities like their "You've Got a Friend in Me" Challenge!

Why Cooleaf for Employee Engagement?

At Cooleaf, our goal is to make it easy for Engagement Managers to do their job. Our platform helps Engagement Managers manage everything from one-on-one relationships to companywide initiatives—all with a few clicks of a button.

From tracking employee sentiment to creating custom recognition and rewards programs, Engagement Managers are empowered to create innovative solutions that will drive employee engagement while also meeting the organization’s goals.

Our mission is to provide a suite of best-in-class tools that provide Engagement Managers with ease and time to focus on what really matters: improving the employee experience.

Here is what some of Cooleaf’s partner organizations have to say about using Cooleaf to fuel their employee experience:

"As the Employee Engagement Manager, I’m always curious about what our employees are thinking and feeling with regard to work and their overall experience, so surveys like the eNPS are incredibly valuable to me. With Cooleaf, I can see what’s working and what’s not, which allows me to propose solutions that increase employee engagement.” - Matt Samuels, EEM, MountainSeed
“We’ve been able to implement things with Cooleaf that we just didn’t have before. The best part is being able to quantify initiatives and see their success over time.”- Jennifer Franklin, EEM, American Auto Shield
screenshots of different metrics available to track employee engagement on Cooleaf. Featured in "Overview of the Engagement Manager Career Path" blog.
Key metrics on Cooleaf like activity participation and recognition rate help Employee Engagement Managers stay at the top of their game!

If you’re an Employee Engagement Manager looking to make a lasting impact in your organization, Cooleaf could be a great fit!

Try Cooleaf's engagement platform


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