Improving employee experience and engagement has remained a priority for firms irrespective of industry, size, or age. However, today’s top firms are rethinking how they measure and understand their workforce.
A recent Gartner report titled “Measuring Employee Engagement: Past, Present, and Future” offers some insight into cutting-edge developments in employee engagement tracking. One clear takeaway is HR leaders’ growing adoption of social analytics tools to comprehensively understand the employee voice.
The End of Annual Surveys
According to Gartner, traditional approaches to measure the employee experience are giving way to other forms of employee monitoring data. Annual, large-scale surveys to gauge employee feelings about their job and workplace have decreased 15% since 2015.
One of the main reasons for this decline is speed. As consumer and business technologies have adopted real-time and predictive analytics, HR leaders are increasingly concerned about their ability to keep up with the rest of their organization. As Gartner’s Helen Poitevin explains, “Feedback gathered from traditional engagement surveys every two years (or even yearly) is not frequent enough to provide a complete and current perspective.”
What’s replacing annual surveys? While many firms are transitioning to small-scale pulse surveys, nearly 60% of organizations are also using employee engagement data from non-survey sources including social media, blogs, email, and review platforms like Glassdoor.
Measuring the Employee Voice
Gartner characterizes the rising adoption of non-survey data sources as part of an overall trend among HR leaders to produce a holistic voice of the employee (VoE). Applying technologies such as sentiment analysis, topic identification, and machine learning to troves of employee word-of-mouth data like Glassdoor reviews and social media posts can generate deep insights about employee opinions, behaviors, and attitudes.
Comprehensively measuring the employee voice can also yield timely insights into the employee experience. HR professionals can detect early signs of disengagement, identify influencers, or uncover emerging risks and opportunities from changing employee attitudes.
Develop your VoE Strategy Using a Variety of Tools
Gartner suggests leveraging all available tools to develop your VoE approach. Administer annual questionnaires for quantitative year-over-year comparisons, deploy pulse surveys for feedback on specific matters about your organization, and fill in the gaps about employee actions and opinions with social and sentiment analytics tools.
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