Continuous Listening: Strategic Measurement Throughout the Employee Experience [VIDEO]

By Nick Hayter - June 03, 2019

Continuous listening has been the subject of a lot of buzz in HR circles recently, the basic idea being that more frequent measurement of employee sentiment provides additional opportunities for intervention and improvements. But as we discussed in our recent presentation at the Perceptyx Innovation Conference (click on the video below if you’d rather watch than read), the key to getting it right is customization: Continuous listening is a strategy that translates into different approaches for different organizations. (Tweet this!)

As with surveys, a continuous listening approach needs to be tied to the organization’s strategic goals, culture, and values. The ultimate goal of an effective continuous listening strategy is to get the right information into the right hands at the right time, to enable the right actions. This article will review the tools available for tailoring a continuous listening strategy that fits your organization, and the times when it’s most useful to deploy them.

Measuring The Moments That Matter In The Employee Experience & Business Life Cycle

The goal of continuous listening is not to collect continuous data. The goal of continuous listening is to enable continuous action that improves the employee experience and performance. (Tweet this!) Therefore, organizations will find it useful to adopt a continuous listening strategy that focuses on important events in the employee journey and the lifecycle of the business.

Critical points for surveying in the employee experience include:

  • New hires and onboarding
  • Promotions, job rotations, training, etc.
  • Exit and alumni

Gathering feedback at these points gives insight into the effectiveness of existing processes and clues for where improvements are needed. While these surveys might be “always on,” employees are invited at the appropriate time—the moments that matter—for each individual employee.

From the perspective of the business life cycle, some surveys will be planned; for example an established cadence for an engagement survey, with planned dates for pulse surveys of engagement drivers, hotspot groups or special topics like total rewards, diversity and inclusion, wellbeing, etc. Other surveys within the business lifecycle will be more ad hoc, in response to events such as:

  • Reorganization
  • Mergers or acquisitions
  • Relocation
  • Downsizing
  • New leadership
  • Other major changes

These surveys measuring about major changes in the organization can be administered while the change is underway as well as following change implementation. The survey findings may illustrate where employees are on the “change curve”—for example, are they still struggling to adapt, or have they successfully navigated the change? It can also help flag issues where communication or intervention is needed to ease the transition through the change.

Do you know how employees feel about recent changes at work? Learn how to design the right listening program for your company with our free guide: Continuous Listening: A Guide To Developing The Right Strategy For Your Organization.

The Census Survey

A continuous listening approach should not be viewed as an alternative to the annual census survey, but as a complement to it. A well designed census survey offers a comprehensive overview on a wide variety of themes and topics, and gives all employees an opportunity to voice their opinions and be heard by leaders.

Census surveys compile a rich data set that can be correlated with data from employee and business life cycle surveys to offer additional insights and predictive capabilities. They can also highlight themes or topics where additional information is needed, which can be measured with the tools in the following section.

Additional Measurement Tools

There are a number of other tools that can be used to drill deeper into specific themes or topics, or simply “take the pulse” of the organization on a more frequent basis. These include:

  • Sample surveys and pulse surveys
  • Manager-led polls
  • NPS and eNPS (employee Net Promoter Score) surveys
  • Verbatim and sentiment tracking

Each of these can be administered to chosen employee populations, defined by demographic characteristics such as: job title or unit, job role, location, tenure, or other attributes. The timing and frequency of these types of measurements are defined by the events or topics they are intended to measure, the organization’s technical abilities to work with the data, and other factors enabling (or inhibiting) the organization’s ability to take action using the additional survey data.

Need help designing a continuous listening strategy that fits your company’s needs and goals?

With the variety of tools available, every organization can design a continuous listening strategy that fits its strategic goals and technical capacity.

At Perceptyx, we know that one size does not fit all, for surveys or continuous listening strategies. We design customized surveys to uncover the insights you need to address your business’ biggest challenges, and include them in a continuous listening strategy that aligns with your needs, goals, and technical capacity. Our survey platform makes it easy to collect data at important points in the employee journey and business life cycle. Get in touch and let’s start working together today.

Download Now: Continuous Listening: A Guide To Developing The Right Listening Strategy For Your Organization


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