The Value of Getting Employee Feedback

We’ve all heard it a thousand times: employee engagement is vital to business success. We know it. We know we should do something about it. But it just never seems to happen.

The benefits can’t be ignored. High levels of employee engagement can boost revenue by up to two and a half times. On top of this, engaged employees are 87% less likely to leave an organisation compared with their disengaged counterparts.

We know engaging employees is important, but working out how to do it is the hard part.

But, there is one easy way to engage employees and reap the rewards: ask them for their feedback.

We’re not just talking about feedback on managers, or how a meeting went (although that’s important too). We’re talking about real opinions about company-wide decisions, ideally before the company makes them.

Engaged employees are invaluable. They help companies come up with better, stronger solutions to problems. The success or failure of these solutions can be completely in the hands of the employees. That’s why when only one in three UK employees say they feel engaged, something needs to change.

Feedback is the key and here’s how it can transform your business:

Produce smarter solutions

When you value your team and give them opportunities to express themselves you’ll come up with better plans. 39% of employees say they don’t feel appreciated at work. This isn’t only bad for them, it’s also bad for your business.

When your team members feel like they can speak openly and honestly you get an awful lot back. And this “an awful lot” can mean invaluable, original ideas that can transform your business for the better.

Project work also becomes easy. Your employees’ feedback on a project will help you make sure the project works for all employees, not just those at the top. Employees can also let you know in advance any fears or reluctances they might be having. It’s better to know this stuff before you implement a project, and not when it’s already too late.

John Lewis have a history of enabling employees to shape work processes. Employees – who are actually called “partners” – regularly take the front row in coming up with new ideas, trialling them and seeing their success. According to the HR team at their distribution centre in Milton Keynes, ownership, collaboration and a sense of belonging are at the core of the success of the projects.

Boost engagement

By taking part in creating solutions, your employees automatically feel more engaged. They feel valued as employees and can help your customers better. The perfect example of a business ‘win-win’. 70% of engaged employees say they have a good understanding of how to meet customer needs. Whereas only 17% on non-engaged employees say the same. Knowing how to help customers is pretty vital, which means employee engagement is equally important.

Sainsbury’s is dedicated to getting feedback from their employees. Every employee – or “colleague” – as the company likes to call them (see a trend here?), completes a yearly engagement survey. Previous results have found that employee engagement has a significant impact, believing that the level of engagement can contribute up to 15% of a store’s year on year growth. We could put a nice, well-rounded, concluding statement here… but those numbers really speak for themselves.  

Improve productivity

So you now have smarter solutions and engaged employees, all thanks to getting their feedback. Now what? Well, those engaged employees can take those smarter solutions and make sure they are super productive.

Because they helped shape the projects themselves, they now have a sense of ownership of the outcome and making it a success becomes a whole lot easier. Not only is the project already stronger because of their feedback, but it can be implemented quicker and more efficiently because everyone’s onboard. Productivity benefits when employees are more invested in what their work will actually achieve.

Back to John Lewis, and in one example partners came up with an idea to speed up workflows during peak Christmas time selling. Partners found that people were picking jobs based on which ones were easiest, which in turn slowed down productivity. The partners themselves decided to change the job system, and came up with a smart solution that was led by them, not management. A number of systems were trialled and the best system picked. It was easily accepted by the partners because – you guessed it – they designed it.

 

Aligning everyone in your organisation with your strategy through feedback is one of the most important things you can do for your company. You’ll see growth, better customer service and a more productive workplace. But perhaps most importantly, you’ll see empowered, motivated and happier employees.

We all know employee engagement is vital to success, now let’s make it an ethos to live by.

Visit wisembly.com to see how our online collaborative tool can help you gather feedback from employees. The benefits speak for themselves.

 

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