We recently sat down with Doug Claffey, Founder and Chief Strategy Officer at Energage, to discuss the four culture imperatives that drive employee engagement and how they apply to the workplace during times of extreme change. Now, we focus on capturing real-time employee survey data so you can make informed decisions quickly and with confidence.
What’s the most efficient way to solicit employee feedback during times of crisis?
We recommend choosing a good technology survey platform that can keep track of your organizational structure while maintaining confidentiality. The annual employee engagement survey is still the best way to capture the data you need to focus your efforts and inform longer-term decisions. Pulse surveys, on the other hand, are extremely effective at capturing real-time, targeted data that enables you to act quickly and with confidence. This is an employee feedback tool that organizations can tap into any time they need to gain insights. And they’re especially effective in times of uncertainty, change, or crisis.
What types of questions do you typically ask in a pulse survey, especially during this pandemic?
It can be a bit of a minefield, to be honest. You need to balance the insights you gain with the risk of surfacing issues you simply can’t address. When we developed the Energage COVID‑19 Response pulse survey, we initially drafted 40 possible questions. But after evaluating them for insight and risk, we whittled that down to five core questions.
You recently ran a pulse survey at Energage in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Can you share some of the insights you gained?
Sure. We checked in with our employees to see how effective our communications have been. Through that pulse survey, we learned that 85 percent of our employees felt well informed. We also discovered that 95 percent of our employees felt comfortable working from home and that they have what they need to do that.
Then we asked employees what more we (Energage) could do, and received a number of thoughtful comments. One employee responded, “Over the last few days, I’ve become more and more concerned and I really think we should go remote for the foreseeable future. Social distancing really is the best way to combat the spread of the virus. We all live in areas that are starting to see a significant increase in cases. I don’t like working remotely, but better safe than sorry.”
This was very impactful feedback for our senior leadership team, along with a number of related comments from other employees. A day later, we decided to switch our policy from working from home on a needs basis to working from home by default. We’re currently only using the office in case of an emergency.