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People Analytics

5 min

6 min

Why Pulse Surveys Matter

Why Pulse Surveys MatterWhy Pulse Surveys Matter

What are pulse surveys, how can they transform employee feedback into loyalty, and why are they so crucial for business success?

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We are witnessing a unique change in the workplace - the Great Stay. This shift in the labor market is unlike the more familiar Great Resignation., in fact, it’s the complete opposite.

Not long-ago employees were leaving their jobs at unprecedented rates, with trends like “quiet quitting” and “rage applying” making headlines. Today, employees are opting to remain with their current employers, even if they don’t want to.

This significant percentage of the workforce is staying put due to economic uncertainties and the fear of an unstable job market. This trend poses a critical challenge for organizations: how to identify and address what’s causing the hidden disengagement among employees who are physically present but may be mentally checked out.

Tools like pulse surveys that help measure employee engagement are indispensable – they serve not only as a barometer of employee sentiment but also as a guide for creating a more vibrant and productive workplace culture.

Now more than ever, HR leaders need to take full advantage of employee feedback tools to help understand their culture, keep employees engaged and productivity high. There’s a very simple way of knowing what your employees are thinking and feeling, and that’s by asking them.  

What is a pulse survey?

Pulse surveys are brief, frequent surveys that provide real-time insights into employee sentiment. Unlike traditional surveys, which can be lengthy and infrequent, pulse surveys are designed to be concise and constant, making them an invaluable tool for continuous employee feedback.  

The challenges with traditional pulse survey tools

While the value of pulse surveys is evident, their implementation sometimes poses challenges. Many tools available in the market require extensive configuration before they can be effectively deployed. This process can be time-consuming and may require a significant investment in terms of resources and training. Organizations often find themselves struggling with the complexity of setting up these surveys, which can delay the collection of critical employee feedback.

Recognizing these challenges, Kudos has designed its Pulse Survey feature to stand out in simplicity and ease of use. Unlike other tools that demand extensive setup, Kudos' Pulse Surveys are built with a minimal configuration approach so organizations can start gathering valuable employee feedback and plan actionable changes.” says Scott Sturgeon, Vice President of Technology at Kudos.  

Why do pulse surveys matter?

Traditional annual surveys often fail to capture the ongoing subtle shifts in employee sentiment. Pulse surveys offer a real-time barometer of employee engagement. They serve as a continuous feedback mechanism, helping organizations detect and respond to issues before it’s too late.  

In a time where disengagement might be silently brewing, pulse surveys act as an early warning sign, allowing companies to take proactive measures. They enable organizations to:  

  • Capture real-time feedback: Pulse surveys offer a snapshot of how employees feel at a given moment, allowing companies to react and adapt quickly.
  • Improve communication: These surveys open up new channels for communication between employees and management, ensuring that everyone’s voice is heard.
  • Enhance employee recognition: By understanding employee needs and concerns, organizations can tailor their recognition and rewards programs more effectively.
  • Foster a positive workplace culture: Regular feedback helps build a culture of openness and continuous improvement.

How pulse surveys transform employee feedback

Employee feedback is a critical component of a thriving workplace. By giving employees a voice and actively seeking their input, organizations not only gain valuable insights for improvement but also significantly boost employee loyalty.  

Promote better communication and transparency

Pulse surveys offer an open communication channel that show employees their opinions are valid, valued and considered.  When employees feel heard and their contributions are acknowledged, they are more likely to develop a strong emotional connection with the organization, leading to increased job satisfaction, commitment, and ultimately, heightened loyalty. Employee feedback is a cornerstone for building a loyal and dedicated workforce that trusts and believes in its organization.  

Gather and act on employee feedback

Pulse surveys introduce a dynamic, real-time approach to understanding and enhancing the employee experience. They offer a concise, frequent, and engaging way to capture the immediate sentiments of employees.  

This transformation allows companies to quickly identify and react to trends, issues, and opportunities within their workforce. As a result, feedback becomes an ongoing conversation rather than a periodic checkpoint, leading to more responsive and effective organizational changes. This real-time feedback mechanism empowers companies to build a more engaged workplace, and actively shapes a better company culture and employee experience.  

The role of eNPS in employee feedback

Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) is a crucial metric for measuring employee loyalty and satisfaction. Pulse surveys are an excellent tool for regularly tracking eNPS, providing organizations with timely insights into employee advocacy and engagement levels. By regularly measuring eNPS through pulse surveys, companies can proactively address issues and bolster employee satisfaction.

Pulse surveys and employee recognition

Pulse surveys also play a crucial role in shaping effective employee recognition programs. By gathering direct feedback from employees, these surveys provide insights into what aspects of the recognition program are working and what needs improvement. This feedback helps organizations tailor their recognition strategies to better meet employee needs. The ability to continuously refine recognition programs based on real-time feedback ensures that they remain relevant and effective, aligning with the evolving expectations of everyone.  

Kudos' Pulse Surveys: simplicity, efficiency & insight

Kudos' Pulse Surveys feature is centered on accessibility and user-friendliness. The surveys are crafted to be straightforward, ensuring that employees can provide their feedback quickly and effortlessly. This also allows for faster implementation of feedback-driven actions through:  

  • Simplicity in survey creation: with a selection of meaningful questions, creating engaging and relevant pulse surveys becomes straightforward and efficient.
  • Generation of actionable insights: the feedback collected through pulse surveys isn’t merely data; it’s a valuable resource for implementing impactful changes within an organization.
  • Optimized survey design: the balance achieved in the design of these surveys by Kudos ensures their effectiveness and user-friendliness.

Kudos has revamped its People Analytics to offer deeper insights into organizational culture initiatives. This analytics platform transforms raw survey data into actionable intelligence. It allows organizations to benchmark, track trends, identify patterns, and understand the impact of their culture initiatives. By leveraging this, organizations can make informed decisions to enhance employee engagement, improve workplace culture, and drive positive change.

Embracing pulse surveys for a better workplace  

As organizations navigate the complexities of employee engagement, today’s workforce demands a new approach. With traditional engagement strategies proving to be less effective, Kudos Pulse Surveys provide an essential solution. It offers a quick, accurate, and user-friendly way to gauge and respond to employee sentiment, which is crucial for maintaining motivated and productive employees.  

Kudos is committed to helping organizations navigate these evolving challenges to ensure organizations are proactively addressing issues before it’s too late. With this innovative, easy-to-use pulse survey tool; employees voices are heard, feedback is analyzed and targeted solutions can be and implemented.  

People Analytics

5 min

5 min

An Introduction to Employee Sentiment Surveys

An Introduction to Employee Sentiment Surveys An Introduction to Employee Sentiment Surveys

Keeping a close watch on employee sentiment is important. Use a tool where employees can regularly submit feedback on their wellbeing.

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Why is employee wellbeing important?

Engaged employees are highly motivated and move your organization forward because their needs are being met, they have a sense of belonging, and they know their wellbeing matters. Interestingly, there is a significant correlation between employee recognition and employee engagement – recognition boosts employee engagement and contributes to mental wellbeing.

When was the last time you took a pulse check of how your employees are feeling? For HR leaders, it’s critical to have a sense of where your employee sentiment stands, and how to get ahead of it before it’s too late. The key to improving sentiment and wellbeing in your workplace is being aware of it, not just through an annual survey, but through constant information gathering.

An article published by the MIT Sloan School of Management describes seven steps to making employee wellness and wellbeing a priority in your organization, and the first step is talking to your employees. This may sound simple, but having the right channel is critical. Hosting an event or a meeting to generate discussions may not be the perfect solution to truly understanding what your employees need. Sometimes a simple and anonymous channel works best, and is more inclusive, especially with a distributed workforce.  

Checking in on Your Employees

Collecting feedback anonymously through a sentiment survey allows you to track how employees as a group are feeling over time, and also creates a safe space for anonymous individual feedback. This provides invaluable information that can help you to improve the quality of your employee experience. Leaders can learn how their employees are doing, and employees have an outlet to share what they’re experiencing.  

Most organizations understand the importance of employee wellbeing – but how do we measure it? Giving your employees access to a tool where they can share their needs is one way to gather valuable insights into your employee sentiment. Regularly surveying your employees allows you to build a sentiment index, allowing you to track trends over time. The goal of an employee sentiment survey is to uncover specific and actionable insights about your team’s happiness and wellbeing, so that you can take informed steps to improve it.  

Collecting the Data

Technology like the Kudos recognition platform is making it easier than ever for employees to openly communicate with their organization. For employers, it’s all about having easy access to digestible data that helps them to:

  • Gain an understanding of overall employee wellbeing
  • Assess how much stress your workforce is experiencing
  • Determine gaps in your current wellness and engagement programs and initiatives

For those employers that want access to deeper insights on employee wellness, the first step is properly gathering information. Using a tool where employees can submit anonymous feedback on their wellbeing that then translates that feedback into easy-to-read data and analytics is an excellent way to get started.

Make it Simple and Easy

Giving feedback shouldn’t be time-consuming or difficult for your team. If employees need to go out of their way to provide their thoughts, they simply won’t do it. As important as it is to encourage your employees to provide feedback, it’s equally important to make it easy and convenient to do so.

Kudos Employee Sentiment Survey

Adding emoji reactions, ratings and comment options is a great way for employees to quickly check-in with how they’re doing. Keep in mind that anonymity can be crucial when asking employees for feedback. Keeping responses anonymous is less invasive, increases the number of participants, and can help to instill trust with your employees. You’ll also get more accurate data.

Regularly asking employees for feedback with a short sentiment survey, for example, adds to your employee experience without it feeling like an interruption. With the data collected, your organization can begin to prioritize the changes your employees are seeking.

Make the Changes

There is nothing worse than being asked for feedback and seeing nothing come of it. This is critical. If you ask your employees to be open and vulnerable about their wellbeing (even anonymously) you have to address the concerns or ideas for improvement they provide.

Once you have the data, look for common threads to identify potential issues with your employee experience. The goal is to make the necessary improvements that address the feedback you’ve received, and the sentiment trends you’re evaluating. It’s important to be prepared for negative feedback or seeing data that is showing a decline in employee wellbeing. What’s important is that your organization uses these insights to move forward with a strategic plan to enhance your employee experience.

  1. Be transparent with your employees and openly communicate what your organization plans to do with the information they receive.  
  1. Share the results and be timely with your response so employees know their feedback is valued and useful.  
  1. Provide the goals you want to achieve and the actionable steps your organization will take to implement them.
  1. Re-evaluate your core values and culture and determine the gaps that need to be filled or if a shift in the organization's focus needs to be discussed.  
  1. Collect data more than once – monthly is best – it’s important to continue to check-in with your employees and monitor the data to determine what’s working and what isn’t.  

Conducting an employee sentiment survey is a step in the right direction in showing employees you care about their wellbeing. How your organization changes to improve your overall employee experience is the path that will positively impact your people, and your business.

People Analytics

5 min

5 min

7 Ways You Should Measure Your Workplace Culture

7 Ways You Should Measure Your Workplace Culture7 Ways You Should Measure Your Workplace Culture

Can you easily describe your workplace culture? If you can’t, that could be a sign of a bigger problem. A weak or non-existent culture is not neutral; it signifies a lack of direction and cohesion. A strong and clearly defined culture is critical to taking your business to the next level.

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In today's competitive business landscape, workplace culture is more than just a buzzword—it's a driving force behind organizational success. But what exactly is workplace culture, and why does it matter? In this blog, we'll delve into the intricacies of workplace culture and explore how a strong and well-defined culture can propel your business to new heights.

Workplace culture is not just about the superficial perks or trendy office spaces; it's about the underlying fabric that shapes how things get done and defines your organization's identity. It's the unique way your company lives out its purpose and delivers on its brand promise to customers, as Gallup describes it. Without conscious input and guidance, culture can falter, leading to a lack of direction and cohesion within your organization.

The benefits of cultivating a strong and distinctive culture are far-reaching. From improved people management and more effective hiring to increased employee engagement and better business outcomes, a well-nurtured culture can create a thriving and productive work environment. Moreover, it influences how employees interact with customers, keeps them aligned with your organization's mission, and even guards against unethical behavior.

But how do you measure the strength and impact of your workplace culture? As the saying goes, "you can't manage what you can't measure." In this blog, we will explore practical methods and metrics to help you evaluate and improve your workplace culture. By collecting sentiment, behavior, and relationship data, you can gain valuable insights into employee experiences, the alignment of behaviors with your values, and the overall health of your culture.

So, if you're ready to unlock the full potential of your workplace culture, join us as we dive into seven essential methods and metrics that will revolutionize the way you measure, understand, and enhance your organization's culture.

1. Surveys

Surveys are a great tool to get honest feedback from your entire workforce. You probably already run periodic employee engagement surveys - Inc has rounded up examples of facets indicative of culture you may want to ask about in your next round. Surveys help you understand overall employee sentiment and alert you to any trends or issues within your workforce.

That said, surveys should not be relied upon as your only culture metric. There can be bias and inaccuracies in surveys based on each respondent's frame of mind when taking it. The most effective way to track information about your culture and employees (also known as HR/People Analytics) is to layer survey data, with behavior and relationship data collected using other methods described below. Surveys collect data about what people think or feel, but not about what they do, nor how they interact. There are dozens of great survey tools and resources in the market ranging from Microsoft Forms and Survey Monkey to high-end solutions like Qualtrics and Glint.

2. Program & Event KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)

Sometimes what happens outside of employee’s roles and day-to-day tasks can be the most telling. Another way to measure the health of your culture is to track attendance at social events or wellness campaigns over time. While everyone’s reasons for not attending vary, a general lack of involvement could indicate a lack of social cohesion and shared values across employees. As a piece on workplace social functions by SHRM explains, “HR should view employees' reluctance to attend a social function as a window into a potential human-relations or culture issue at the company." This is an example of behavior data as it tracks the actions of employees.

"Sometimes what happens outside of employee’s roles and day-to-day tasks can be the most telling."

3. Anecdotes

Keep track of anecdotal feedback to uncover patterns or common themes. Make a point to review the anecdotes in leadership meetings weekly, monthly, or quarterly. Some examples of places you can collect these include exit interviews, Glassdoor reviews, and social media posts.

One remarkably simple but effective way many of today’s HR professionals are collecting this information is simply by regularly asking employees to complete this sentence: “I don’t know why [your company name] doesn’t just ____.” Anecdotes are another example of employee sentiment data but can often also give great insight into behaviors and relationships.

4. HR/Workforce KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)

Tracking HR KPIs is key to understanding important cultural shifts (positive and negative.) The good news is that most of this data is likely readily available in your HRIS (Human Resources Information System.) These KPIs include turnover rate, rates of absenteeism, internal promotions, and referrals.

Another important metric is the eNPS (employee net promoter score), which you can collect through the surveys mentioned above. Tracking these quantitative metrics against your culture initiatives can help you understand how you’re doing. For the most part, this is an example of behavior data as it summarizes actions taken by the workplace. eNPS would fall into the employee sentiment category.

5. Business KPIs

Tracking business KPIs in conjunction with efforts to improve culture can also provide valuable insight. Work with your finance team for data like:

  • Customer retention rate
  • Customer satisfaction (Net Promoter Scores)
  • Revenues
  • Sales

While this data doesn't necessarily fall into one of the three categories in our framework, significant changes in business KPIs can indicate positive (or negative) culture changes, especially when layered with any initiatives you're working on to improve your culture.

"In tracking behaviors, you may uncover that your organizational values are not resonating with your workforce, and that might explain why your culture isn’t where you’d like it to be. In fact, most people don’t know their company values, much less how or where they apply."

6. Tracking Behaviors

While culture itself is challenging to measure, its outputs, or behaviors, can be tracked. Tracking the prevalence of the behaviors associated with your values can be a good indicator of your culture’s strength.

Using your desired value-based behaviors, you can create culture metrics for your organization. For example, if innovation is one of your values, and sharing ideas is an associated behavior, you can ask managers and team leads to report on the prevalence of innovative ideas being shared. Similarly, if accountability is a value, an associated behavior might be meeting deadlines. Again, ask your managers to report on whether deadlines are usually met.

In tracking behaviors, you may uncover that your organizational values are not resonating with your workforce, and that might explain why your culture isn’t where you’d like it to be. In fact, most people don’t know their company values, much less how or where they apply. In this case, you have two choices: work on better communicating your values to your team or revisit your values altogether. Evidently, this is an example of behavior data, but it can also provide valuable relationship data.

Tools like Kudos make it easy to reinforce and measure core values and behaviors/qualities, automating the process and housing it all in one place. More on that in the next section!

7. Kudos - Analytics and Insights

With Kudos Analytics, you can automatically measure key components of your culture like the value-based behaviors just discussed, the collaboration between people and departments, and contributions to morale through the recognition and appreciation messages shared on the Kudos platform. Rich and valuable behavioral and relationship data.

Analytics are built into the Kudos employee engagement and recognition platform, a hub for peer-to-peer recognition messages highlighting employee contributions. With Kudos, each recognition message is tied back to organizational values and behaviors.

The great thing about a system like Kudos is that new data is gathered regularly, allowing you to correlate how your team appreciates each other and interacts with one another, allowing you to connect that information to HR and Business KPIs.

With Kudos, you can measure:

Feedback: Kudos can help you gather direct feedback by embedding your current survey tool in Kudos and sharing the results.

Participation: Kudos is key to measuring participation based on activity in the system. Kudos can also be used to promote and appreciate those who participate and manage your culture events.

Anecdotes: Every message in Kudos provides valuable insights on the connections between employees as well as the effort, act, or accomplishments by individuals, groups, and departments. These messages often capture how people have moved the dial on business KPIs.

Behaviors: The often hard to capture details on what behaviors or qualities individuals demonstrate are captured in every Kudos recognition message. This helps you reinforce your core values but also measure how people live them every day.

Beyond the “moment in time” measures, Kudos Analytics also tracks trends over time, allowing you to discover any changes in behaviors or contributions, ranging from one employee going above and beyond regularly to a notable improvement in culture.

These dashboards can help managers understand the culture of their team and leaders as well as the culture of the entire organization. Individuals can see their contributions, too, allowing them to self-correct if they aren't exhibiting enough desired qualities (behaviors.)

Sample from the Kudos Analytics Dashboard:


Looking Ahead

The MIT and Glassdoor survey quoted earlier in this piece found that 90% of CEOs and CFOs who responded believe that improving corporate culture would increase their company’s value, with 80% ranking culture among the five most important factors driving their company’s valuation. Being able to show that you’ve made strides in building up your culture through measurement and metrics will not only help you understand which initiatives are working but also highlight HRs role as a strategic business partner.

Culture is vital to employee engagement and business success - understanding how you’re doing is the first step toward managing and building the culture of your dreams.

Kudos Can Help.

Kudos is an employee engagement, culture, and analytics platform, that harnesses the power of peer-to-peer recognition, values reinforcement, and open communication to help organizations boost employee engagement, reduce turnover, improve culture, and drive productivity and performance. Kudos uses unique proprietary methodologies to deliver essential people analytics on culture, performance, equity, and inclusion, providing organizations with deep insights and a clear understanding of their workforce. Book your demo today!

People Analytics

5 min

5 min

What You Need to Know About HR Analytics and Engagement

What You Need to Know About HR Analytics and EngagementWhat You Need to Know About HR Analytics and Engagement

Today’s HR professionals and business leaders face unprecedented challenges in attracting, engaging, and retaining their people. These challenges are expensive.

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Employee engagement is more important than ever, and HR departments are making the shift to using People Analytics to make better decisions.

Using robust People Analytics takes the guesswork out of measuring employee engagement; it helps create an optimal employee experience to reduce turnover and absenteeism and increase productivity. Simply put, measuring the employee experience motivates people to change at all levels.

The "push to pull" shift from surveys to passive behavioural data collection gives HR, managers, and employees more accurate data to act upon.

Engagement Combats the Costs of Turnover

Employees engagement can pay significant dividends given the cost of labor and turnover.

Today’s HR professionals and business leaders face unprecedented challenges in attracting, engaging, and retaining their people. These challenges are expensive.

On average, 50-60% of Fortune 500 companies' business spending is allocated to labor, including turnover, which is costing US companies 1 trillion dollars per year. The cost of replacing an individual employee alone can range from one-half, to two times that employee's annual salary.

With labor costs continue to rise, the natural question for an organization to ask is, “how do we retain our talent?”

Optimizing Employee Experience

Why employers are turning to people analytics

Organizations are managing employee engagement through HR data and analytics.

HR writer and thought leader, Josh Bersin defines HR Analytics, or People Analytics, as data that “allows organizations to understand the way they operate, improve productivity and performance, reduce turnover, and really make work better for people.” If people analytics feels like uncharted territory for you, you aren’t alone.

A survey of HR professionals finds just 9% of people feel they have a “good understanding of the talent dimensions that drive performance,” and only 8% report having access to “useable data.”

Luckily, the space is becoming more accessible and user-friendly through simple dashboards that summarize data, and make the information more digestible and actionable.

Most of today’s organizations use Human Resources InformationSystems (HRIS) that allow for easy access to data on the recruitment process, employee retention or turnover rates, and employee demographics. But, measuring employee engagement data is a much less common practice; historically, the data has been more difficult to access beyond traditional surveys or anecdotal interviews.

Change is coming.

Employee Engagement Analytics

Employee engagement is a coin with many sides.

At the top of organizations, conversations surrounding organizational culture, employee engagement, and values are typically subjective and specific to the individual experience of those in the room. This is not an intentional outcome from leaders — they are doing the best they can with the information they have. Fortunately, people analytics can provide them with more information.

People analytics on employee engagement brings numbers and reports into those conversations, giving everyone in the organization a voice through the data.

As an example, the leadership team may think their values are representative of, or understood by their workforce; but a simple report from their recognition system could show that the employees’ values don’t align. Timelines might be valued over innovation, authenticity over professionalism, or creativity over productivity.

Taking Out the Guesswork

HR professionals can work with accurate data on who their employees are, who they interact with, and what they value

A piece in Harvard Business Review (HBR) suggests that using People analytics makes human resources management more “deliberate and systematic.” With people analytics, organizations are more effective, “evidence-based, talent-centric, and meritocratic.”

When HR professionals are working with accurate data on who their employees are, who they interact with, and what they value, it takes the guesswork out of HR decision-making. Returning to the earlier example, if the organization’s values are not resonating with employees, it might be time to revisit them. Or, if there are inclusion issues, HR could run training on unconscious bias, diversity, equity, and inclusion to address these issues head-on.

So, how do organizations make that shift to people analytics, and where does the data come from?

Measuring Evolutions in Sentiment

The most effective people analytics measures people’s interactions, behaviours, and sentiment over time.

Historically, HR data was only collected through surveys. The problem is, surveys are just a snapshot in time and often do not tell the whole story. What’s more, many factors can affect a survey's results and their value; including the quality of the questions, the respondents’ mood, the events on the day leading up to the survey, and more.

Still, surveys are effective at gauging employee sentiment (how employees feel about their role and organization). Poor survey results can make an organization realize their need for deeper people analytics.

The most effective people analytics measures people’s interactions, behaviours, and sentiments over time. One approach to measuring employee engagement with people analytics is passive data collection, which uncovers trends and actionable insights by analyzing how employees interact in communication systems like Slack, Teams, or Kudos.

This gives an understanding of culture and engagement that you would never get from a survey. For example, seeing first hand which teams collaborate most often, least often, and if there are any communication siloes in your organization, to name a few. In short, behavioral and relational people analytics gives data that reflects the true employee experience.

Real Data in Real Time

People analytics are shifting from “pull to push”

A study from Deloitte frames this as a shift from “pull to push” where rather than actively collecting data, managers and employees can see actionable data in real-time. They’re “pushed” to make a difference.

How do HR Data and People Analytics Benefit Individual Employees?

The psychology behind why data tracking is effective in changing behavior is simple.

An article by Wired distilled it down to two factors: measurement and motivation. The piece also quoted Lord Kelvin’s famous saying, “if you cannot measure it, you cannot improve it.”

Stefan Olander, VP of Digital Sport at Nike, explains, "there's incredible power in knowing how you're doing,” he continues. “It's inherently, incredibly motivational."

Making Change Accessible and Actionable

People analytics unlock the potential to address any underlying problems

The same philosophy can be applied to people analytics in an HR context. If managers have accessible data on employee turnover rates, absenteeism, and the quantity and quality of recognition and gratitude they provide to their teams, the measurement will motivate them to improve their results by addressing any underlying problems and building on what’s working.

Self Awareness as Motivation

With access to data about their behaviours and contributions, people can improve

Similarly, if individual employees have access to analytics about their own behaviours and contributions, they will be aware of their performance and be motivated to improve. For example, if they know their company values and can see, through data provided by a platform like Kudos, how often they are recognized for displaying those values in their work and behaviors, they will know where their strengths lie.

When employees know their strengths and are encouraged to build on them, they are more engaged and better contributors. A piece from Yale University explains:

“Employees have long focused on fixing weaknesses to increase chances of success. But recent research suggests that this long-standing advice may not be the best coaching. In fact, when leaders, teams, cultures, and individuals focus on strengths, they have a better chance at winning than if they focus on improving deficiencies.”

Looking ahead

Research shows that more than 70% of companies now consider people analytics a high priority. How is your organization using people analytics to improve employee experience and engagement?

If you think you could be doing better, reach out to the Kudos team for an enterprise strategy session today.

People Analytics

5 min

5 min

4 surefire ways to measure employee engagement

4 surefire ways to measure employee engagement4 surefire ways to measure employee engagement

Bottom line: employees that are truly engaged are more productive, make customers happier, and are less likely to leave their organizations. Here’s a good overview of why engagement matters, and even some tips on how to achieve it.

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Is your team engaged?

By now, most HR professionals understand the importance of employee engagement.

Bottom line: employees that are truly engaged are more productive, make customers happier, and are less likely to leave their organizations. Here’s a good overview of why engagement matters, and even some tips on how to achieve it.

How do you measure engagement?  

The best way to measure engagement is to create benchmarks. For example, you can conduct a survey. There are many different kinds of surveys, so let’s take a look at what sets them apart:  

Net Promoter Score

Simple. Fast. Powerful.

The NPS lets you know the overall mood of your team, which gives you an idea of their level of engagement. Check the whole team or get snapshots of subgroups by department, location, etc. to see micro trends.

The NPS is based on the idea that every employee can be put in one of three categories: promoters, passives, and detractors.

You simply ask the question, “How likely is it that you would recommend [your company] to a friend or colleague as a great place to work.”

Responses are measured on a 0 to 10 point rating scale:  

  • Promoters (9-10) are definitely on board. Count on them to go the extra mile.
  • Passives (7-8) are okay with things, but not exactly pumped. You’ll get decent effort out of them.
  • Detractors (score 0-6) are unhappy employees. Their lack of buy-in and low effort could affect morale and actually damage your company.

Your NPS is the difference between the percentage of promoters and detractors – passives don’t factor into your score. The NPS is not a percentage, it is an absolute number between -100 and +100.

Here’s an example: if you have 30% promoters, 50% passives and 20% detractors, your NPS is +10 (30 minus 20.)

What’s a good score?

According to the creator of the NPS, Fred Reichheld, the average American company scores less than +10 on the NPS, while superstar employers get between +50 and +80. But these may vary a lot depending on your sector and other factors like culture.

Remember, you are benchmarking, so what matters most is the change in your score overtime – per month or quarter, for example.  

It is important to note that “Net Promoter” is a registered trademark of Fred Reichheld, Bain & Company and Satmetrix. If you do use the NPS in your engagement benchmarking, you should provide an acknowledgement in the small print.

Pulse Surveys

Fast. Frequent. More in-depth.

An employee pulse survey asks simple questions of your team weekly or monthly. You get a quick take on the health of employee engagement at your company, hence the name 'pulse'. A pulse survey is more in-depth than the NPS, but still simple enough. You’ll get the most honest results if you make the survey anonymous.

You know this type of survey. You present a number of statements, and ask team members to rate their agreement on a scale: Strongly Disagree (1 point), Disagree (2), Neutral/Neither Agree or Disagree (3), Agree (4), Strongly Agree(5).

Pulse survey questions on employee engagement  

Below are the questions we use at Kudos to help us measure employee engagement. Of course, you can ask any questions you want. These are just the ones that work for us.

Leadership Questions – looking at how employees see senior leadership

  • Our senior leaders are committed to making our organization a great place to work.
  • I trust our senior leadership to lead the company to future success.
  • I believe our senior leaders are honest and trustworthy.
  • The leaders of this organization set a positive example.
  • Our senior leaders inspire me to do my best.

Purpose Questions – about vision, mission and values and how they relate to individuals

  • I have a good understanding of the mission and the goals of the organization.
  • I understand the importance of my role to the success of the company.
  • Our work environment is designed to help employees do their best work.
  • I find my job interesting and challenging.
  • I know what is expected of me at work.

Respect Questions – about an employee’s relationship with their immediate supervisor or their team  

  • I trust and respect my immediate supervisor.
  • My opinions and input are sought and seriously considered in decisions that affect me.
  • My manager values and regularly recognizes my contributions.
  • I have a close and trusting relationship with one or more of my coworkers.
  • If I contribute to the organization’s success, I know I will be recognized.

Opportunity Questions – about how an employee feels about their growth and career opportunities  

  • I see ways to grow and learn in my current role.
  • My job allows me to utilize my strengths.
  • My immediate manager cares about my development.
  • I see professional growth and career opportunities for myself in the organization.
  • The organization makes investments to make me more successful.

To get your overall score, just add the values of all the responses. Divide the total by the number of your employees to get an average per person score. Of course, you can also check your score against each subsection. Based on the responses, you’ll get an idea of which areas you may need to make improvements in order to increase engagement.

Delivering NPS and pulse surveys

As for conducting an NPS or pulse survey, there are a variety of survey tools, such as Survey Monkey that make it easy to gather data.

Comprehensive Surveys

Need to dig deeper?

If you find that the NPS and pulse surveys just scratch the surface on organizational employee engagement, try an in-depth annual survey. Search online and you’ll see that there are many organizations that specialize in workplace surveys.They can design, conduct, and prepare detailed reports with insights and actionable strategies to address issues.

Peer to Peer recognition: another way to measure engagement

Kudos, our online employee experience and culture platform, provides several ways to help you measure employee engagement. Everyone in your organization can see the Engagement Leaders module, which shows your company’s top senders and receivers of Kudos.

Your leaders with admin privileges can see a variety of data showing how individual employees, departments, or the whole company are being recognized by their peers for demonstrating engagement-related values like collaboration, communication, passion, and accountability.  

You can easily see and track this data over time, so benchmarking is a breeze.  

More important HR-related analytics    

Here are some handy links about using data to be a better manager:

How to Use Employee Feedback for Business Growth

Are you missing out on the benefits of HR analytics?  

Make it happen

Whether you use NPS, pulse or comprehensive surveys, or the many benchmarks in Kudos, make a commitment to stay on top of employee engagement in your organization.

Looking for tips on how to improve engagement?  We have some great ideas here and here.           

People Analytics

5 min

5 min

Are You Missing out on the Benefits of HR Analytics?

Are You Missing out on the Benefits of HR Analytics?Are You Missing out on the Benefits of HR Analytics?

Leading companies have been investing resources and time into data management for years; HR has not yet used these insights to their full potential. How can HR teams use analytics to their advantage?

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Financial advisors and marketing managers track key analytics and data to make informed business decisions, and ultimately move their company forward.

While the use of analytics is common for such roles, HR professionals are also jumping on the analytics bandwagon in recent years. Leading companies have been investing resources and time into data management for years; HR has not yet used these insights to their full potential.

Today, there is a wealth of insights for HR professionals to unlock.

Surprisingly, not every organization’s HR department will explore the potential of analytics. In fact, Deloitte finds only 26% of HR professionals report using analytics and data. The wide range of data and the challenges that come with analyzing it means most HR teams won’t take advantage of the resource.

How can HR teams decide which analytics matter? Once they narrow it down, how can HR teams use analytics to their advantage?

Understanding common analytics types

On the topic of HR data, people analytics usually comes to mind first. In its simplest form, people analytics is the application of employee insights and data to people management and decision-making. With people analytics, insights can be broad and specific. For example, you can look at demographics, skills, and education at the same time.

These analytics allow HR professionals to identify trends in their workforce behaviour and performance, then make informed decisions about their organization. Analytics like these fall under the HR umbrella, which revolves around data like people, programme, and performance analytics.

Let’s break analytics down into clear categories.

People Analytics: People analytics involve data elements such as demographics, skills, and engagement.

Programme Analytics: Data can include absenteeism, participation in training and development initiatives, talent management, leadership programmes, and so on.

Performance Analytics: Performance analytics views data such as talent assessment, achievements and goal attainment, onboarding programmes, and more.

So now that we understand common types of analytics, what’s next?

Determining which analytics matter most

Companies use analytics to extract in-depth insights into the health of their businesses.In turn, HR teams grow more adaptive, agile, and proactive. For example, 69% of companies either already have or are implementing a people analytics approach. Other studies reveal that 69% of companies with 10,000 or more employees have a proactive people analytics team.

LinkedIn discovered that 45% of large companies and 51% of mid-size companies are increasing their spending on HR technology and analytics.

Given that 58% of executives feel having better insight into talent could improve profitability, and 60% say it could help improve revenue per employee — these statistics are compelling.

But how are these companies determining which analytics they need to focus on to drive success?

The first step is to identify your organizational objectives, then answer any lingering  questions to meet those objectives

Consider your existing objectives and pain points. You may have questions like…

  • Which areas of our organization’s practices or operations could use improvement?
  • What’s hurting our company the most right now (internally or externally)?
  • Which teams or departments require assistance?
  • Do we risk losing our top talent, and why?
  • How does our compensation model connect to our employees’ engagement and performance levels?

The next step: collecting the data

Often, this step is where HR teams stumble.

Collecting data and assessing it is difficult, because of all the tools and applications HR must juggle in between.

You may feel compelled to create a ‘warehouse’ or ‘database’ for all your analytical resources, but storing them can become difficult to organize, costly to maintain, and time-consuming to analyze.

Implementing focused solutions with valuable and actionable information is a better investment of time and resources.

Within the Kudos® application, we developed an in-depth analytics dashboard that provides HR teams with easy access to the insights they need.

Now, you can answer your most pressing questions

Comprehensive data leads to comprehensive solutions. Get specific; use the analytics data to answer your questions in detail.

Then, share the results with leadership and fellow HR professionals

Leadership must know where improvements can be made, so they can make better decisions on everyone’s behalf.

On that note...

Remember to involve leadership

More organizations are using analytics to better approach talent recruitment and retention. With analytics, they have a deeper understanding of what keeps prospective employees invested in their organization. 71% of companies see analytics and data management as a high priority.

Insights and analytics can and will continue to provide HR with valuable information they need to make strategic decisions. But without leadership buy-in, analytics are fruitless. Leadership has to support the employment of analytics, just as they do for engagement or recognition.

Deloitte finds that 21% of HR executives feel HR technology and analytics were one of the top three challenges their organizations faced before 2019.

Interestingly, while analytics is one of the most sought after skills by HR professionals, only 7% of companies feel their organization has sufficient people analytics and data skills .

It’s evident that HR professionals want to learn how to proactively use analytics; they simply need the support and tools to do so.

The landscape of both HR and the global workforce is changing drastically; four generations coexist in the workplace, and remote and contract work is dominating the mainstream workforce. By bridging the gap between analytics and HR, organizations will see a significant turnaround.

You might be missing out on the benefits of analytics

Mainly, HR teams prioritize recruitment and retention.

Both are no easy feat, especially given the many factors impacting successful recruitment, onboarding, and retention.

It’s so important to retain talent, and HR professionals carry this weight on their shoulders.

Employee compensation typically represents up to 80% of an organization’s budget, which means high attrition and turnover rates present a key problem and significant cost. HR is left to solve these problems; fortunately, analytics is a great tool to mitigate them.

McKinsey finds that harnessing analytics as part of key decision making, causes up to an 80% increase in recruiting efficiency, paired with a 25% rise in business productivity and a 50% decrease in attrition rates. Clearly, analytics is key for any retention strategy.

17% of HR professionals who use analytics and data to address retention, culture, and diversity in the workplace also have backgrounds in market research and analytics.

Organizations that have an advanced capability in people analytics benefit from 30% higher stock prices, 56% higher profit margins, and a 79% higher return on equity. Not to mention, they financially outperform their peers.

It’s fair to say – analytics can be both a driver of retention and growth, and a critical tool for HR teams. Those same teams can use data collected from analytics to see if their existing strategies are effective, and find patterns that impact the organization’s business processes.

Analytics as a tool isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon. In fact, it is only continuing to evolve as HR further embraces it.

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