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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Resources From: Strategic HR Review, Volume 11, Issue 6
ORC International’s 17th Annual Employee Engagement Conference, London, 20 June 2012
Staff surveys are a mainstay of modern HR and Employee Communications departments. With the wealth of technology now at our fingertips to collect and interpret data, however, managers are often at a loss to know how to navigate this sea of information. They need the right tools to enable them to stay engaged with employee engagement.
At ORC International’s 17th Annual Employee Engagement Conference, held in June at London’s Vinopolis, engagement experts from across the UK shared their views on finding and using the right methods of promoting successful employee engagement.
Empowering managers to use data
A key theme was how to empower line managers to use survey information to take action. ORC International’s Employee Research specialists, Dan Weatherhead and Helen Shaw, shared their knowledge of some of the tools now available to help managers get the insight they need to devise engagement action plans that are both achievable and can be communicated effectively.
“Organizations don’t simply want to know what their engagement levels are”, said Weatherhead. “They want detailed information about what is driving those levels, but they want it in an accessible way with tools that they can use to present their data to their teams and cascade it down through the organization”.
Tools such as ORC International’s recently launched Highlights, for example, offer fully interactive platforms for managers to explore data, customizing the way results are presented to view trends and comparisons.
Maintaining the momentum
The theme of empowering and enabling line managers to make the best use of the information offered by staff surveys was echoed by other speakers at the conference. Lisa Sibley, Employee Engagement manager with Essex County Council, emphasized the importance of enabling line managers to use staff surveys as a means of engaging in a richer dialogue with staff. She said that providing the right tools to support and enable line managers to interpret and take action on their survey results is extremely important.
At Merlin Entertainments too, the importance of generating high employee engagement scores was recognized as being just the start of the journey. Taking part in a panel discussion on “Creating truly transformational engagement”, Stephanie McCormack, Corporate HR Director at Merlin, said: “It’s brilliant to have great engagement scores, but you need to be able to understand exactly what is driving them so you can maintain that momentum throughout the year”.
The next step
What’s the next step to keeping engagement on the agenda for organizations? “As social media becomes ever more firmly embedded in business practice, organizations are starting to investigate how to use these tools to help gain a better understanding of what drives engagement among employees”, said Helen Shaw. “We are currently looking at ways to integrate social media with employee survey programs to drive up response rates and deliver even richer results for clients”.
Kate Pritchard Director of Employee Research at ORC International.