Rules of Engagement

Canadian CFOs Lack Concern Over Employee Engagement 

Toronto, ON – Employees’ personal commitment to the job is a crucial factor in a business’s success. Yet new research from global staffing firm Robert Half suggests Canadian executives aren’t making it a priority. While over half (52 per cent) of CFOs interviewed think their workers are more engaged on the job compared to three years ago, 88 per cent are not concerned about the level of commitment.

Recent findings from a separate study help to underscore the point that executives should not take employee engagement — or loyalty — for granted: About one-third of professionals surveyed for a study on worker satisfaction and engagement from Robert Half and Happiness Works indicated that they are considering leaving their jobs in the next six months.

CFOs were asked, “Compared to three years ago, do you think employees are more or less engaged at work?” Their responses*:

Significantly more engaged


Somewhat more engaged


Somewhat less engaged


Significantly less engaged


Don’t know/no change




*Responses do not total 100 per cent due to rounding.

CFOs were also asked, “How concerned are you about your employees’ level of engagement at work?” Their responses*:

Significantly concerned


Somewhat concerned


Not too concerned


Not at all concerned




*Responses do not total 100 per cent due to rounding.


CFOs were asked, “How concerned are you about your employees’ level of engagement at work?”

1% Significantly concerned

12% Somewhat concerned

61% Not too concerned

27% Not at all concerned

Source: Robert Half survey of more than 270 CFOs from a stratified random sample of companies in Canada.

Responses do not total 100 per cent due to rounding.

© 2017 Robert Half International Inc.

“An engaged employee is inherently more dedicated to ensuring that their efforts are in line with business goals,” said Greg Scileppi, Canadian president, Robert Half International Staffing Operations. “Cultivating staff commitment should be an ongoing and evolving priority for executives. Take time to get to know your teams; learn what makes them happy at work, and provide a culture that underscores their value to the company while promoting their wellbeing, to keep them motivated, enthusiastic and loyal.”


Robert Half offers these five suggestions to help improve employee engagement:

  1. Give individuals a glimpse of their future. Check in with team members about possible career paths at your company, including potential advancement opportunities and milestones needed to achieve them. Individuals want to know where they’re headed and how you will help them get there.
  2. Promote creativity and innovation. The Robert Half and Happiness Works research found the ability to do interesting and meaningful work is a key factor in employee happiness. Encourage your staff to pursue new projects — and explore new pathways — at your company they are likely to find fulfilling.
  3. Keep lines of communication open. Employees are inclined to feel more connected to their jobs when they have productive work relationships with their managers. Remain accessible to your team and let them know they can come to you with questions and concerns.
  4. Take an interest in your employees’ work — and their lives. Every worker is an individual. Make a point to learn about and support staff members’ professional goals and aspirations, as well as their passions outside the office. 
  5. Ensure your firm is always staffed appropriately. When employees are overworked, they are less likely to feel motivated and engaged. Make sure your company has access to skilled temporary professionals who can support your team when business demands escalate and during prolonged hiring processes.

About the Research

The survey was developed by Robert Half and conducted by and independent research firm. It is based on telephone interviews with more than 270 CFOs from a stratified random sample of companies in Canada.

About Robert Half

Founded in 1948, Robert Half is the world’s first and largest specialized staffing firm. The Menlo Park, Calif.-based company has more than 325 staffing locations worldwide and offers online job search and management tools at For career and management advice, follow our blog at Follow Robert Half Canada on Twitter at @RobertHalf_CAN for additional workplace advice and hiring trends.

For further information contact: Naz Araghian, (416) 865-2140, [email protected]

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