Why is Employee Data So Important?
Employee data is a roadmap to places your organization has never travelled. Unfamiliar destinations that might, at first, or to some, seem a tad off the beaten path.
Take surveying brand new recruits as part of the onboarding experience as a for instance.
Where’s the value in that kind of data when newcomers have such limited exposure to the organization? Why even contemplate going there?
Those people are leaving voluntarily for greener pastures elsewhere or retirement.
What good comes out of data collected from employees who, for all intents and purposes are pretty much disconnected from the organization and distracted by what lies ahead? In one word: direction.
The insights gained from employee data guide actions and strategies for people managers and HR professionals, your executive team and broader organization.
Employee Data is your Compass
It points the way toward stronger employee-employer relationships, the direction towards higher engagement.
But to get there HR professionals, the stewards of employee data, need to be analytical thinkers with the ability to understand different types of statistics and different ways to integrate insights into day-to-day activities and longer-term strategies.
It’s a well-known industry fact that more than half of all voluntary quits happen within a year of starting and that 40% of new hires leave within six months. Onboarding survey data tells you what you’re doing right. It pinpoints where you can pull up your socks and try harder. Solicited right from the get-go this data can help improve your retention rates while at the same time, convey how much your new employee’s opinions are valued.
Ditto exit surveys. Analysis of responses may reveal a disconnect between recruitment “promises” and “actual” job experiences. Some departments or divisions may have poorer retention rates than others. Employee data can reveal management shortcomings, work/life imbalances, limited personal growth and development opportunities, and other problematic areas your organization can influence and change.
And speaking of change, if your organization is introducing new policies, or finds itself in the middle of change management or a merger, data gleaned from quick one-off “pulse" surveys can elicit employee feedback to inform leaders about how these kinds of changes will be received, or after the fact, how they’re being accepted. Timely employee data facilitates nimbleness and agility.
Questions for pulse surveys and standard employee engagement questionnaires can be customized to measure aspects specific to your organization.
Maybe business-based questions don’t quite fit your not-for-profit organization.
It could be legislative or regulatory changes in your industry are on the horizon. How are employees impacted? By extension what’s that impact on your organization?
Identify concerns and considerations of importance presently or in the foreseeable future. Focus. Ask the right questions. Analyze strengths and shortcomings. Chart a course of action using employee data to help navigate the way.
About Patricia Bell Newson
A graduate of Canada’s leading Journalism Degree program, Patricia Bell Newson is an accomplished writer and communications specialist. As a key member of the TalentMap team, Pat leads the company’s thought leadership with full force producing weekly content on employee engagement and best practices in employee surveys. Pat’s experience in advising leaders on strategic approaches to sensitive issues, priorities, and policies together with her ability to research and easily grasp various concepts regarding the workplace has been a great asset in creating valuable insights for HR leaders.