Only 21% of HR and engagement leaders said they feel that employees deeply trust their company’s upper management, according to an Achievers report released on Thursday. This leaves the overwhelming majority (79%) of HR leaders feeling unconfident in managers’ relationships with employees.

HR engagement leaders are improving in other areas: 58% of these leaders believe they are effectively outlining expectations for their employees. Some 64% of leaders feel they offer solid support systems for employees, including peer support groups and access to professional resources, the report added. The majority (62%) said they also believe they support a healthy work-life balance.

SEE: 10 ways to communicate more effectively with customers and co-workers (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

However, clear lines of communication are still a prominent issue in the enterprise, the report found. Only 22% of HR and engagement leaders said their companies have effective channels of communication between management and employees. This lack of communication is the main cause of distrust employees have for company leaders, the report said.

Technology could be the answer to improving communication and trust in an organization, according to the report. Some 48% of HR leaders said they believe technology has the potential to improve the employee experience. Surveys, questionnaires, and always-on listening tools could help foster a healthier, more communicative work environment, the report added.

Employees are willing to try these tools, with 64% of employees saying they want access to the always-on feedback systems, proving how badly employees want conditions to change. However, only 20% of employees are actually provided that capability, the report found.

While 29% of employees want regular monthly feedback on their work, only 14% of employees are receiving that. HR and engagement leaders are in the same boat: 64% said they want always-on feedback tools, but only 20% have implemented the tool. Employers must invest in and prioritize these tools if they want better communication in their organizations, the report said.

For more advice on how strong managers can help their teams succeed, check out this TechRepublic article.