Lockdown Listening

Many people have embraced not just “working at home”, but full-time “working from home” as a new way of life; a large chunk of those people won’t want to return to the office on a regular basis, and who can blame them? There can be huge time and money savings in it. We all know commuting can be both wasteful and hateful, and as the Covid-19 pandemic has shown, in many cases largely unnecessary for a wide range of jobs.

Others, though, have found working from home a nightmare. It’s relatively easy if you live alone and have the luxury of a study; it’s not so much fun trying to conduct video calls from the living room of a high-rise flat against a background of children arguing over what should be on the TV.

What was once a simple two-level playing field, divided only into those with an office door, and those suffering the noise and interruptions of the open-plan office, is now nothing of the sort. And as an employer, you’re not necessarily privy to what your employees’ home environments – now also their work environments – are like. HR have scant idea of what people are putting up with.

Useful sources of information have disappeared too - you can’t get involved in chats by the water cooler, or have lunch with your colleagues; all social interaction has gone online, into private emails, WhatsApp, Messenger, etc, where it can’t be seen. 

Many employers dedicate significant resources to trying to gain an understanding of how their employees feel about their jobs. In these strange times, the task of getting meaningful and actionable results from any such initiative has been made far, far harder, especially given the need to move quickly in response to fast-changing events. 

The traditional method for determining employee mood has long been the annual multiple-choice questionnaire – which is clearly an inadequate mechanism for today’s fast-moving situation. Pulse surveys - once a quarter or even once a month – aren’t enough either. A lot can happen in a month – what if schools keep closing and re-opening? Or we’re locked down, and then we’re not, then we are again? 

Thymometrics’ solution to this is always-on feedback. The moment an employee feels differently about their job, they can tell you, anonymously; that information is available to the analytics immediately, so it becomes possible for employers to spot trends in real time. Thymometrics also measures not just employees’ satisfaction levels, but also (crucially) their priorities. 

In terms of 1:1 communications, employees can post anonymous comments in Thymometrics whenever they have something to say, and these can be the start of extended anonymous conversations with HR, in order to get to the bottom of issues. Conversations can be initiated by HR with employees too, based on their views, so HR could (say) reach out to everyone whose work/life balance was out of kilter.

Finally, employee engagement itself isn’t an annual, quarterly, or monthly event – it’s continuous. So an always-on solution sends a great message to employees: “we’re always ready to listen”. It’s much more impressive than “we’re going to listen, but only once a year”, isn’t it?  

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Thymometrics - through real time, always-on surveys and feedback solutions, we provide revolutionary yet simple tools to empower employees and monitor wellbeing whilst providing managers with deep and useable insights to improve business culture, productivity and profitability. 

For more information, please call 01223 750251, email info@thymometrics.com or visit thymometrics.com.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

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