UK businesses may reconsider employee engagement, as job satisfaction is rated more important than bonuses

While UK businesses spend billions of pounds on bonus incentives, a new study has discovered that most workers rate job satisfaction, getting on with colleagues and decent treatment by their managers ahead of receiving financial rewards.

A survey of 1,000 employees by the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) has found that three out of five employees rated enjoyment of their job as the main motivator at work.

This means that many companies could be looking to re-address their employee engagement methods and how they can motivate and keep hold of their key workers.

The ILM study's findings suggest that the billions of pounds spent on bonuses often have little or no impact on the commitment of workers.

ILM chief executive Charles Elvin said that UK companies have spent an "astronomical amount" on financial incentives for their staff in the past year, but the report is suggesting that there are far more cost-effective ways to motivate staff, which may also impact on future recruitment plans.

Mr Elvin commented on the alternative methods businesses may now employ, stating: "These include giving regular feedback, allowing people to have autonomy in a role, the opportunity to innovate, and improved office environments.

"What this also shows is that having good managers is paramount in business, as they are key staff motivators who can make a real difference to their teams.

"It sounds so simple, but something as basic as hearing 'great work on that report' can be a real boost to an employee's confidence and deliver a sense of pride and satisfaction."

The ILM offers qualifications and specialist member services, and as such is the UK's largest management body, charged with getting the most out of management jobs for its members.

With a passion for good leadership and management, the ILM said it believes its members have the power to transform individual and organisational performance.

The ILM also forms part of the City & Guilds Group, and as an independent charity its primary purpose is to improve the standards of leadership and management employment in order to drive social and economic prosperity.

Copyright Press Association 2013