Are you an HR or internal communications professional working at a company where employee retention is a touchy subject? Are people quitting left, right, and centre, and don’t care to say why during their exit interview?
If you answered ‘yes’ to either of those questions, or the thought of those situations give you the willies, then keep reading.
🤝 Employee engagement and employee retention go hand in hand. Want to know what employees really want to see at work? Go straight to the source.
What is eNPS?
To start off, let’s define eNPS. eNPS stands for Employee Net Promoter Score. Originally, the Net Promoter Score was used to measure customer satisfaction and experience. Typically, eNPS touches all parts of a company’s HR function, but can also fall under internal communications.
During the 1990s, Fred Reichheld did research around how to make measuring customer satisfaction more efficient. His argument was that traditional customer surveys took too much time to create and analyze before action could be taken in an organization.
Rather than sending out a lengthy survey, Reichheld determined that only one question was really needed to understand customer loyalty. He later wrote about his research for Harvard Business Review, and his research was first implemented by Apple.
Once eNPS was distributed at the employee level, it became clear that there were links between employee satisfaction, customer satisfaction, and loyalty to companies and brands.It might sound cliche, but happy employees really do make for happy customers. For that reason alone, make understanding what employees need to be happy at work a top priority. Click To Tweet
“… it’s super easy for these front-line managers to see eNPS as a strong measure AND a something they can evaluate to plan actions around improving employee experience. Just like any engagement measure or audit -the proof is not as much in the result (good or bad) but more in how the result is used to drive action towards improvement.”
– Priya Bates, President of Inner Strength Communication Inc.
How do employee surveys help improve an organization?
When it comes to making company decisions, especially major ones that will affect employees directly, it’s important that you understand what your employees are thinking.
The best way to do this is by gathering feedback, which helps senior leadership to bridge gaps and build relationships with individual contributors. Employee pulse surveys are one way to close this gap.
Pulse surveys range between 1 and 10 questions, and usually take under five minutes to complete. Employee response rates are usually high with them because they’re specific and fun to do.
Similar to an eNPS survey, an employee pulse survey with a single question is great for getting relevant, timely information on employee sentiments.
Areas of interest on a pulse survey include:
- Organizational changes
- Company news (internal and external)
- Effectiveness of training
Employee pulse surveys don’t have to completely replace annual employee surveys. In fact, they can serve as a nice complement to the larger data set that the annual version would leave you with.
If you’re going to go this route as an internal communicator, ensure that you have a plan for the annual employee survey in place first, so that you can lace core questions into your pulse surveys and build up your data over time.
How to use eNPS
The overarching reason behind eNPS is for teams and their leaders to bring issues to the surface, and create a system for prioritizing and improving upon these issues.
This type of employee pulse survey is one piece of a puzzle that supports team leaders in:
- Coaching themselves and their team members
- Taking action on trending organizational issues
- Being viewed as a support system for workers
The outcome of eNPS puts emphasis on sharing anonymous employee feedback quickly and completely with leadership teams, and provides more clarity on what elements of employee sentiments and engagement directly affect customer loyalty and satisfaction.
As a whole, eNPS is embraced by organizations because of how simple it is to conduct. The survey itself doesn’t take a lot of effort to create, and the data is easy to interpret.
eNPS question examples
Although eNPS is typically only one question, a second question can help internal communicators to glean more information on underlying company issues. The most frequently asked question for eNPS is:
- On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to recommend this organization as a place to work?
If an internal communicator is trying to understand how employees feel about working at the company versus how they feel about the product, they may want to ask something like:
- On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to recommend this company’s services or products to a friend or colleague?
Asking this second question is a great way to segment reviews around different areas of the business. Employees might not enjoy working for the company or their particular role, but they may feel that the product or service the company offers is heading in a positive direction.
eNPS score range
Overall, eNPS ranges from -100 to +100. Something between -10 to +20 is considered to be a normal score, and between +40 and +50 is considered to be an excellent eNPS.
What are the benefits of Employee Net Promoter Score?
The eNPS survey standardizes the measurement of employee advocacy for a company, brand, or product. It also removes the need for a lengthy employee satisfaction survey.
As eNPS surveys become commonplace in organizations, internal communicators have the ability to access eNPS benchmarks over time. With this data, both leadership and internal communications teams have a clear picture of improvements and decreases as they happen.
These groups will also be able to:
- Measure employee satisfaction in relation to employee experience
- Be proactive in dealing with workplace dissatisfaction
- Boost your brand as a desirable employer
The key: Don’t rush employees. Give them at least a week to submit their responses. They can be weighing a great deal when selecting their rating, and giving them ample time to answer shows greater concern for individual contributors than the organization.
Once you’ve collected and interpreted the data, and shared results, you may want to consider starting a focus group or committee. If you’re satisfied with your current eNPS, you could use the focus group to distill why certain aspects of the company culture are having such a positive impact within your organization.
Alternatively, if your eNPS leaves you with a great deal of room for improvement, use the focus group to show non-members the commitment to improving company culture.
What are the negatives of Employee Net Promoter Score?
One of the main shortcomings with eNPS is that it favours a larger sample size, and therefore is better suited to organizations with 100 or more employees.
Another issue is that eNPS is very much grounded in numerical data, and does not present a way to quantify human emotions. Instead, it just provides HR and internal communications professionals with a standard to hold their organization to.
It’s also more difficult to understand the exact reason behind the organizational trends that eNPS presents. Those responsible for collecting the employee survey data learn that the company culture is either where it needs to be, or has clear areas for improvement.
Often, extra research or comparisons with other companies are needed to better understand where your company sits. This added work makes it harder for internal communicators to share the results with employees, causing action to be delayed.
“Overall, I don’t necessarily believe in eNPS in general, because anything that’s between 6 and 8 is “neutral.” Realistically, people typically enjoy what they are doing if they rank it at an 8 out of 10, but they might just recognize room for improvement.”
– Natasha Makovora, Social Media and Employer Brand Specialist
Why should organizations measure eNPS?
Organizations should consider measuring eNPS because it provides a clear metric around employee loyalty. Not only does it examine whether or not an employee is satisfied in their role or with the organization, but if they’d be willing to speak positively about your product or service in a positive manner.
If you’re looking for a way to ease into measuring employee engagement, it’s an easy way to get started. Three big reasons why you should want to understand employee loyalty are:
- Loyal employees care more about the company and usually work harder
- Loyal employees are more invested, and therefore are more likely to stay longer
- Loyal employees will constantly look for ways to improve the organization as a whole
Although this seems obvious, you want to know that you have more loyal employees (i.e. promoters) than unhappy or disloyal employees (i.e. detractors). The numbers around employee retention show that:
- Replacing an employee costs companies about 20% of the departing employee’s salary
- There are costs associated with hiring, training, lost productivity, and mistakes
- It takes up to three months for a new employee to be in the value-add stage
- 59% of employees wouldn’t recommend their company as a good place to work
With more people statistically unhappy at work than not, organizations can’t afford to put internal communications at a low point on their list of priorities. The more you keep employees in the loop, the more invested they’ll feel in what you’re offering and what they’re doing.
What is a good eNPS?
Statistics show that organizations using analytics to manage their workforces see their profits improve by up to about 65%.
With only 33% of employees engaged at work, there needs to be more attention paid to employee engagement, especially with it being so closely tied to employee retention.
As internal communicators, you need to work with leadership teams to be more involved with employees. Start developping opportunities that entice detractor employees (in particular) to stay at the company.
It’s most common for HR and internal communications departments to deploy an eNPS survey on a quarterly basis. It’s not too seldom or too frequent, which leads to better response rates from employees. The higher your eNPS, the more employee-centric your organization is.
How can companies improve eNPS?
If you’re looking to improve on your eNPS, it’s important to look at feedback from all groups. Even though promoters and detractors are the only ones considered in the final score, passives are still representative of active employees. Therefore, it’s a great idea to get their opinion as they’re neither happy or unhappy at work, and can be more neutral with their feedback.
How to interpret promoter feedback
Promoters are the happiest employees in your organization. Take the opportunity to ask them what it is that they love so much about where they work. This will help you better understand the areas of the company that are successful.
Making an effort to know what’s working well can be useful to HR teams in both recruiting and retaining talent. These are initiatives and practices that you can double down on, and ensure to highlight when you’re onboarding new employees.
How to interpret detractor feedback
Overall, these employees are unhappy at work. Although it’s expected that their feedback will be mostly negative, the best way to uncover what their biggest issues are is by asking them to share what they really think in a safe space.
Once you have all of that information on hand, show them that their concerns are being heard by taking action. By doing this, you can improve their negative perceptions of the company culture around transparency and active listening, and perhaps deter them from leaving the organization.
How to interpret passive feedback
Remember: These employees represent the population of employees that are generally satisfied at the organization. Similarly to how you should handle detractors, when it comes to understanding their rating, ask them for feedback around what holds them back from giving a ranking in line with promoting the company.
Once you gather this feedback, it’s your responsibility to work hard to convert passives into promoters. Make it safe for them to be completely open and candid with their feedback. e ready to take action so that they have evidence that they are being listened to.
How to improve Employee Net Promoter Score overall:
- Share results with leadership and individual contributors
- Make an action plan for positive organizational change
- Communicate the full cycle of the employee survey results
- Filter data to better understand what priorities should be
As long as all of the data and feedback is acknowledged, then internal communicators can move towards making changes.
Keep the lines of communication open, and be prepared to discuss the results and answer eNPS questions from all levels.
Product Update: eNPS in ContactMonkey
Over the past couple of months, we’ve been working hard to further improve our drag-and-drop email template builder. Now with ContactMonkey, internal communicators can include eNPS surveys in employee newsletters.
To embed a survey, all you have to do is select an eNPS survey from the template builder sidebar and drag it to your desired location within the newsletter.
Employees just have to make their selection on the scale from 1-10, and the results are compiled and displayed on ContactMonkey’s Campaign Analytics page.
Are you ready to start collecting feedback from emails? With ContactMonkey’s internal email tracking tool, you can easily send employee newsletter and one-off internal emails while gathering real-time analytics around how employees are engaging with it. Drop a pulse survey in there, and give employees the opportunity to provide comments. The sky’s the limit! Book your personalized demo today.