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Trust is key to building an engaged workforce

Monday 12 November 2012

Acas welcomes the Government's publication of the evidence base for effective employee engagement published today.

Acas Chair Ed Sweeney, said:

"Today's report from Engage for Success presents a comprehensive evidence base for employee engagement. At Acas we know from our experience of working with businesses up and down the country that an engaged workforce leads to improved performance and increased productivity and innovation. And one of the key ingredients of engagement is trust."

To coincide with today's announcement, Acas has published tips for creating high trust workplaces as part of a new discussion paper on the impact of trust at work, which is one of the key ingredients of an engaged workforce.

Acas has a straightforward approach to building engagement at work and we've published what our experience tells us are the ingredients of a happier, more motivated and productive workforce:

  • Workplaces demonstrating strong commitment from leaders and line managers that listen and are committed to the organisation's vision.
  • Trained and confident line managers who are consistent  in communicating the organisation's mission, involve employees in decision making and are fair and consistent in their management role.
  • Mechanisms for employees to contribute either through unions or in other ways. This is called employee voice.
  • Employee voice is critical because your workforce has first hand knowledge of what works best, how current organisational practices can be improved, and how to innovate.

Ed continued:

"Like any relationship, trust needs to develop over time. It's not easy and isn't something that is built overnight. The report highlights the engagement deficit which his worrying. However there are some essential ingredients that can help employers. Trust should be seen as a fundamental building block. This is trust between managers, employees and employee reps. Our experience in helping resolve workplace disputes shows us that if you've built trust it's much easier to resolve conflict if it does arise.

"Our experience can help turn engagement into reality within the workplace. Acas has over thirty five years' practical expertise on how to get it right when it comes to managing people. With around two thirds of employees saying they have more to offer in skills and talent at work, now it the time for employers and organisations to put the theory into practice, and realise the benefits."

For further advice and guidance on trust and employee engagement in the workplace visit

Notes to editors

  1. Acas aims to improve organisations and working life through better employment relations. It provides information, advice, training and a range of services working with employers and employees to prevent or resolve problems and improve performance. It is an independent statutory body governed by a Council consisting of the Acas Chair and employer, trade union and independent members.
  2. Launched by Prime Minister, David Cameron in 2011, Engage for success is an independent voluntary group of leaders, managers, trade unionists, engagement practitioners and experts who are backing the importance of employee engagement. The taskforce launched its latest evidence about the effectiveness of employee engagement in London on Monday 12 November 2012. Further information about Engage for Success is available from the new national website
  3. For further information about Acas' latest discussion paper, download pdf icon Placing Trust in Employee Engagement [120kb].
  4. For further advice and guidance on engaging your workforce visit
  5. For media enquiries or to arrange an interview please contact Clare Carter/Shumon Rahman Press and PR Manager (job share) on 0207 210 2688. or Lou Owen, Media and Marketing Officer on 0207 210 3920. For out of hours media enquiries please call the out of hours duty press officer on 07825 691093.