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    Employee Listening – The Underrated Component Essential to Build the Best Teams

    October 14, 2023

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    Employee Listening – The Underrated Component Needed to Build the Best Teams

    In the last few years, organizations have made efforts to improve EX by learning more about their employees – they're broadening their view when looking at employees, learning more about the human aspects in addition to the employee’s professional side.  But there’s more to continuous listening than just improved EX. 

    Surveys have always gotten a bad rap. They’re considered boring, and it has become almost impossible these days to send out a survey without a freebie or an incentive attached to it.  

    In recent times, after years of multiple iterations, surveys have evolved. In the corporate world, in particular, organizations have revamped and redesigned surveys to make them shorter, and more interesting, and ensure that they’re given the time they deserve.  

    But it isn’t time to sit back and let the wheels run yet.  

    While the tools required to craft surveys have evolved and technology now can help increase survey response rates, what still requires fixing is how we all think about surveys. It’s time we sit up and take notice of all the ways employee surveys can help.  

    And it’s important we start by acknowledging that surveys are more than just that. They’re powerful channels of communication that give the management access to what’s on the mind of every single employee in the organization.  

    In the last few years, organizations have made efforts to improve EX by learning more about their employees – they're broadening their view when looking at employees, learning more about the human aspects in addition to the employee’s professional side.  

    What needs to be done now is make this a dynamic, continuous process. Collecting and studying employee data shouldn’t stop with being a one-time activity.  

    There’s more to continuous listening than just improved EX. Understanding employees, and delivering personalized experiences to them is only half the problem solved. To ensure their experience is on an upward trajectory, it is important to analyze how they react and apply the learnings to constantly adapt. Employee survey responses are a gold mine of insight that can help organizations enhance the experience at every stage of the employee’s journey in an organization. 

    A shift in mindset, to look at it as employee listening will help organizations go the extra mile, listening proactively, iterating on the go, and ensuring that the employees’ and organization’s goals are aligned.  

    Break the Silos 

    From a time when employees had to form unions in order to ensure their voice was heard, to a point where organizations are proactively seeking employee feedback. And this isn’t just limited to annual surveys. 

    It is common practice to send out feedback forms after events – whether they are classroom training sessions, guest lectures, webinars, or anything else.  

    What if these discrete efforts could be tied together by instituting an umbrella employee listening initiative so employee voices and echoes are heard continuously? You’d be able to not just collect feedback from the ground, but also zoom out and see things from 30,000 ft above the ground. The kind of perspective insight one can derive with holistic feedback can be extremely powerful.  

    Here’s how employee listening can add value at each stage of the employee lifecycle and then tie them all together to provide you with a fascinating view of your workforce:   


    🔷 The careers page or the job application is the first point of interaction between a candidate and an employer. While HR teams are stepping up efforts to provide candidates with smooth experiences and establish better first impressions during the application process, there’s a lot more than can be done with employee feedback.  

    Your employees have gone through the recruitment and onboarding process, and listening to their thoughts – not just immediately after their joining and onboarding but some time down the line as well – will provide you with perspective that nothing else can.  

    🔷 Among the most underrated benefits employee listening offers is its role in talent management. Today, most talent profiles we have are incomplete in the sense that they don’t quite include information about the employee’s more intangible, human aspects. Listening to employees on a continuous basis, and doing so proactively, is extremely valuable to organizations as they will be able to gain a more holistic understanding of the employee. This richer employee profile will help take better decisions when it comes to everything related to talent development, be it improving performance, organizing learning and development programs, plan career development paths, etc.  

    🔷 There’s a clear need for organizations today to rethink their employee appreciation, recognition, and compensation strategy. As the talent market evolves, employees’ expectations from their employers has evolved as well. Aside from the basic needs such as career progressions and competitive compensation, employees today seek appreciation, recognition, and validation. These have a tangible impact on employee performance. The kind of recognition and appreciation that employees seek is also changing, and each individual has their unique desires and expectations. Personalized, continuous employee listening is indispensable for organizations if they want to ensure that their employees are happy and productive at work.  

    🔷 Termination or separation is also a piece of the employee lifecycle that deserves much attention today. The employee-employer relationship isn’t as transactional as it used to be a couple of decades ago. Organizations invest a lot of time and money in developing their talent, making separation a significant moment in the employee lifecycle. Paying attention to employee sentiments and understanding why and how employment termination happens is critical input for organizations as they iterate and improve their talent strategies.  

    Important as it is, collecting, analyzing, and acting upon employee input on all these is far more complicated than simply administering generic surveys periodically.  

    And this is where robust employee listening tools can help.  

    Enter Employee Listening Tools

    HR technology has advanced to a stage where survey and employee listening tools have the capability to support all these requirements. For example, AI-powered features can assist with tasks such as sentiment analysis, help with deriving real-time insights from surveys, and also provide people managers with actionable insight.  

    Moreover, holistic employee listening tools also enable companies to chart action plans based on the survey insight and iterate. Organizations can now use HR tech tools to design comprehensive surveys, roll them out to employees, create benchmarks and engagement indices,  analyze employee feedback, chart action plans, and implement them – all on one platform.  

    You know what needs to be done, you have the technology that can enable this...all you need to do now is refresh your approach to surveys. They’re far more powerful than you think!  

    Check out Darwinbox's surveys and employee listening solution Engage  and turn echoes into action! 

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