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Employers That Act on Worker Feedback Are 3x as Likely to Hit Financial Targets

Employers That Act on Worker Feedback Are 3x as Likely to Hit Financial Targets

Perceptyx research shows organizations are listening more to their employees, but of all industries, healthcare and retail workers are the least heard

TEMECULA, Calif., April 26, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Organizations that regularly listen to - and act on - employee feedback are three times as likely to meet or exceed their financial targets as those that don’t. And they are ten times as likely to achieve high levels of customer satisfaction and retention.

These are the findings of a study of 600 organizations by employee listening leader Perceptyx. The company also found that firms that listen well are 20 times more likely to say they adapt well to change and 11 times more likely to have high employee retention levels.

Businesses are catching on to the benefits of employee listening. 75% say the pandemic (and related issues with churn and burnout) motivated them to listen more. More than 60% survey their entire workforce at least quarterly. By comparison, in 2014, a study found that only 18% of organizations were surveying more than once a year.

Unfortunately, not all businesses are listening as closely to their workers as they could. Healthcare and retail companies in the study listened less frequently, across fewer channels, and were slower to address employee feedback. These sectors have suffered high staff churn rates and intense labor shortages since the pandemic.

The Perceptyx study identified that there are four types of organizations:

  • Episodic listeners conduct one or two surveys a year, and keep ownership of data collected within the HR department. Results are shared narrowly and follow-up actions are top-down.
  • Topical listeners conduct deep-dive listening around specific topics or events, such as DEIB, M&A activity, or a pending IPO. They encourage, but do not require, managers to take action in response to employee feedback and most action remains centered in HR.
  • Strategic listeners gather feedback on an ongoing basis, including key moments in the employee lifecycle such as hiring, onboarding, exit, and promotion. They also use advanced analytics to understand the relationships between these data and other business data. Executives seek employee feedback when making decisions and action occurs at multiple points in the organization.
  • Continuous conversationalists use a variety of active and passive listening channels at scale like calendar analysis, email sentiment, and/or crowdsourcing, as well as surveys, and the results of these conversations inform everyday business decisions. The executive team leads the strategy in partnership with HR. Leaders and managers at all levels are responsible for understanding and acting on feedback, and for communicating the progress of those actions to employees.

According to the findings, Episodic Listening programs have the least impact on overall business performance, while Continuous Conversation programs have the greatest impact.

“Lack of executive support is one of the biggest barriers to success of a listening program,” said Emily Killham, Director of Research and Insights at Perceptyx. “But these findings show the benefits of integrating employee feedback in terms that should make executives sit up and pay attention.”

More data and a guide to moving up the maturity curve to achieve Continuous Conversations at Scale is available in the full report: The State of Employee Listening.

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