Our People: Employee Engagement Survey Next Steps
A: As an organization, we should all care about employee engagement. Why? The literature shows that engaged employees have increased levels of job satisfaction, will take positive actions to contribute to the organization’s mission, vision and values and, in health care, we know that employee engagement is directly linked to patient satisfaction. In fact, employee engagement, quality and patient satisfaction are all interconnected. The more engaged a workforce is the healthier and more productive they become.
An employee engagement survey is one way that an organization can measure the relationship between the organization and its employees, as well as local leadership and employees. Now, through our most recent engagement survey data, we feel fortunate to have a better understanding of what matters to our employees and how we can improve at both the organizational and local level.
Q: How are the engagement survey results being shared and acted upon?
A: This past July, the Employee Engagement Survey results were shared with our senior leaders by Press Ganey, our employee engagement and patient satisfaction survey vendor. In early August, we shared the high-level organizational results with our directors and managers and then we held open information sessions where senior leaders presented the results for the organization.
Since August, each report owner has had access to their team’s results. Human Resources has trained over 330 leaders on how to interpret, communicate and take action on their results with their team members. I thank all of you who attended an information session – we had great participation from our employees and leaders alike. Now, it’s time to participate in the action planning process and provide your leaders additional feedback on what is working and what is not working in order for your team to make meaningful improvements. Also, the senior leaders have met about directional goals for the organization. These goals are mentioned above in Dr. Conroy’s message this week and we look forward to learning more from our employees about ways we can work together to improve in these areas.
We need additional feedback in order to make meaningful change. In the coming months, the senior leadership team will be scheduling a series of focus groups – across the system – to further discuss the results and our goals. You will also see senior leaders rounding with employees. I encourage all employees to get to know our leaders and to share feedback – keeping communication channels open is essential to our success. We are all in this together.
We plan to survey the organization again in 2018 with what we are calling “pulse surveys.” These mini-engagement surveys will help us measure whether or not we are making progress with improvement actions. We plan to take another full employee engagement survey in 2019.
Q: From your perspective, what are the major drivers of engagement?
A: I believe the first step to drive engagement is to gain a true understanding of what motivates and energizes employees. We must connect with one another to determine what our needs and wants are. We can’t assume we know all the answers – working together is key to both understanding and taking the right actions. At the core, drivers of engagement include:
- feeling safe (physically and psychologically safe)
- contributing to a greater purpose
- a sense of belonging
- open and transparent communication
- feeling a connection with leadership
- understanding and feeling connected to our mission and vision
- advancement and development opportunities
- rewards and recognition we receive from the organization
Balancing these elements is foundational to enhancing, supporting and driving employee engagement.
Q: What does success look like to you?
A: I’d love to see us make marked improvement in our overall engagement scores. This is one measure of success. And, we know that this will take time and a dedicated focus on our improvement plans. We must define what employees believe will make a difference, develop action plans with the goal of improving, measure and analyze our progress, maintain open communication and feedback loops on what is and is not working, then sustain our improvements. Our ability to sustain positive actions and continuously improve will contribute to our overall success – our focus on the employee and patient experience as “one experience” will be what sustains us. While the engagement survey gives us numeric measurement, I believe the true measure of success is how we all feel, as employees, in coming to work every day – taking care of patients and providing services alongside our colleagues. This is something that we will feel in a positive way.
Q: Is there anything we haven’t asked you that you want to be sure to highlight?
A: Yes – Your voice matters! On behalf of the leadership team, we look forward to continuing our conversations about employee engagement, understanding and taking action on ways to improve – and ultimately seeing real progress toward improving our survey scores. Our new tool and resources with this year’s survey make this possible and achievable. I believe in our organization, our people and the exceptional care delivered every day at all of our locations. I know we can make a difference – we already do for our patients and their families. If any employee has questions about the survey or want to share their thoughts, please feel free to contact me directly.