How Making Better Data-Driven Decisions Impacts Employee Engagement – Pulse of the Industry Research
It’s no secret that in today’s corporate environment, there is an abundance of employee data available.
However, many organizations struggle when attempting to use this data to improve their workplace. To help leaders make better data-driven decisions, Kantar Employee Insights recently asked roughly 100 Human Resources Professionals how they use data to define current HR and Employee Engagement trends and decisions. Our research clearly indicated that when it comes to engaging employees, effective employee engagement data is vital – and measuring this data starts at the top.
The Importance of Employee Engagement Data
Engagement is still new in the field of research, but measuring engagement is becoming increasingly popular among organizations in all industries. Nearly 60% of Kantar Employee Insights’ survey respondents highlighted they measured Employee Engagement. The longest tenure for measuring Employee Engagement was 17 years. On average, organizations have been measuring Employee Engagement for approximately five years. Nearly 25% of respondents indicated 0-2 years, highlighting that engagement measurement is trending upward, but it’s still relatively new to many organizations.
While employee engagement measurement is still new, it’s apparent in our research that leveraging data-driven decisions builds stronger support from senior leadership to measure and improve employee engagement. The Senior Management Item Senior management supports employee engagement initiatives had a strong correlation (r=+0.63) with the item My organization links HR data to operational decisions. Since engagement often comes from decisions made at the top, these findings indicate that organizations which link HR data to operational decisions tend to gain strong support from senior leadership to measure and increase employee engagement.
Why are some organizations not measuring Employee Engagement?
It was interesting that nearly four out of the ten respondents did not conduct an Employee Engagement survey. The primary reason for not conducting an Employee Engagement Survey was the lack of senior leadership support (38%).
Thankfully, less than 10% indicated they had no interest in the survey data. Key findings included:
- Nearly 40% of the respondents indicated the lack of support from senior leadership was the primary reason for not conducting an employee survey.
- Thankfully, less than 10% of HR professionals see minimal value in measuring and acting on Employee Engagement surveys.
Employee Engagement starts with Senior Leadership buy-in
For the participants that indicated they were currently conducting an employee survey, over 80% specified they had senior leadership buy-in, supporting the importance that measuring employee engagement starts at the top with senior leadership. Without senior leadership buy-in, it is difficult to maintain a successful employee engagement survey program.
Selling senior leadership on the importance of measuring and improving Employee Engagement can be tricky, but well worth the ROI. Here are some tips for convincing senior leadership to conduct employee engagement surveys:
- Understand your senior leadership’s pain points. From a social psychology perspective, people tend to think rational and act emotional, so by understanding senior leadership’s emotional pain points, you can use rational data to address these points.
- Craft a compelling story to ease senior leadership’s pain points.
- Communicate a strategy to measure and turn the data into action.
Kantar Employee Insights was working with a healthcare organization in the Southwest region that was having trouble getting senior leadership buy-in. We started with a pilot program at one location in their healthcare system, providing data to help them craft a compelling to story to get senior leadership buy-in to expand the program.
Senior leadership’s pain point was the hospital system was leaving millions of dollars on the table because of low patient satisfaction scores. The compelling story was the survey team found a direct linkage between Employee Engagement scores and patient satisfaction scores in their pilot program. The HR Team communicated a strategy to measure and improve employee engagement and patient satisfaction across the entire hospital system over the next two years.
Seeing the clear connection helped Human Resources secure stronger support and resources to measure and improve their engagement score
Our Senior Leadership is Onboard – Now What?
Despite having senior leadership support, many organizations wonder how to most effectively measure and use their data to make decisions. We found there were four basic steps to making sound data-driven decisions:
- Collecting the right information.
- Linking the right results.
- Interpreting the right data.
- Acting on the right results.
In a series of articles over the coming weeks, we will explore each of these steps in more detail, to empower readers to leverage data to make stronger data-driven decisions in your Human Resources practices.
For more information, contact David.Miller1@tnsglobal.com