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How to Revolutionize Retention with 360° Feedback

published6 months ago
4 min read

The ongoing talent scarcity is one of HR’s biggest challenges in 2022. However, for organizations that are successfully able to recruit candidates in today’s job market, it’s important to remember that an employee’s journey doesn’t end once they sign their job offer letter. It’s critical that new hires have a great onboarding experience, one that effectively transitions them into their new role and makes them want to stick around in the long-run.

A Glassdoor survey found that companies with effective onboarding can increase retention by 82% and productivity by more than 70%. Another survey revealed that 64% of employees are likely to leave a new job within their first year after having a poor onboarding experience. Other negative effects of poor onboarding include lower morale and engagement and a lack of trust in the organization.

As important as onboarding is, it’s not the only step of the employee journey that can impact turnover and other key business outcomes. There’s also the pre-boarding or pre-hire phase, the post-hire work experience, and exit processes. However, new research from SkillSurvey reveals that most organizations are missing out on opportunities to collect valuable feedback at all of these touchpoints.

Amidst the ongoing talent shortage, companies can no longer afford to have a subpar onboarding program or employee experience. Gathering the right data at the right times can help businesses make informed decisions that can improve both engagement and retention. In today’s article, I’ll discuss what types of feedback to focus on and how this can benefit employers. I’ll also provide some helpful tips to make the feedback collection process easier and more effective.

Why you should collect feedback during pre-boarding

Pre-hire employee feedback can help companies tailor their onboarding program. Most people believe that the best time to start collecting feedback is after a new team member has settled into their position. However, this leaves a great deal of potential data untapped. Gathering insights during the pre-hire period can help companies personalize the next step of the employee journey — onboarding. And this could make a big difference, since SkillSurvey found that 35% of employers struggle to tailor onboarding to individual needs.

Pre-hire feedback from references on candidate’s strengths and areas of improvement can guide employers on specific areas to address. This is one of the major values of having a detailed reference feedback report. Employers can use this information to address any candidate shortcomings and set new hires up for greater success. In fact, taking this approach has been proven to reduce first-year turnover and it can uncover (and help people improve) the critical soft skills that are needed in many of today’s roles.

Why it’s important to gather onboarding feedback

Employee feedback can help improve the onboarding process. Gallup finds that only 12% of workers report that their organization does of great job of onboarding new employees, a stat that should be alarming for any business leader. Onboarding surveys can be used to find out what new team members liked about their onboarding process and how the experience could be improved for future hires. And since just 19% of employers use a candidate experience survey, it’s clear that companies could be doing more to gather key insights.

Onboarding feedback can help improve the hiring manager experience. When managers are satisfied, new hires benefit from more managerial support and better integration into the team, both of which are factors that boost retention. A manager experience survey can provide insights that can help refine the onboarding experience for both hiring managers and new hires. Despite these benefits, just 46% of companies use manager feedback to measure the effectiveness of their onboarding programs.

Why it’s critical to seek out post-hire feedback

Post-hire data can help engage and retain employees. The post-hire time period includes an employee’s entire working experience up until their departure. Although just 30% of companies use new-hire engagement surveys, obtaining this data can create significant long-term value for employers. That’s because by addressing the root causes of turnover through post-hire engagement, organizations can benefit from up to 41% less disengagement/absenteeism and up to a 59% reduction in turnover.

Why you can’t afford to ignore exit feedback

Exit data can help leaders understand why employees are leaving. Whether an employee leaves by choice or they are asked to go, gathering exit feedback can offer invaluable insights into the employee experience. Organizations can learn why workers are leaving and how to better support people in the future.

Collecting exit feedback from managers can help leaders understand what’s going on in the organization and whether recruiting efforts are bringing in the right talent. Managers who have a close working relationship with their team members can provide valuable insight into why an employee didn’t work out. In addition, reviewing manager feedback alongside employees’ input provides a more complete picture of the current state of engagement.

3 tips for successful data collection

Understanding where you can improve your feedback-gathering process is just the first step. To put this into practice, you’ll need to make it easy for your organization to gather this data. You’ll also need to ensure that you’re gathering the right data at the right times. Here are three pieces of advice to guide your efforts:

  1. Automate data collection. Automating any ongoing feedback collection can save your company time and resources. It also allows you to gather continuous feedback that can reveal trends, insights, and progress over time.
  2. Use the right partner to avoid common pitfalls. Self-designed surveys can lead to biased questions, improper confidentiality controls, and feedback that doesn’t get at the real challenges facing your organization. However, a talent intelligence partner can make sure your surveys have been scientifically validated and are designed to elicit non-biased responses.
  3. Connect your data across the employee lifecycle. Too often, organizations have data that lives in siloes. For example, the recruiting team may have candidate experience surveys, another group may have onboarding data, and exit feedback may live in talent management. It’s important to connect your pre-hire and your post-hire data points to gain a complete understanding of how you can improve the employee experience.

Unlock better retention with the right data

Whether you’re gathering feedback from workers, managers, or references, there’s a treasure trove of information waiting to be uncovered that can help you reshape the entire employee journey. But in order to be successful, your surveys have to be properly designed and you’ll most likely need to automate some of the processes. The right technology solution can help you gather the information you need, so you can make informed decisions that are backed by data.

Thanks for reading — be sure to join the conversation on LinkedIn and let me know how your company is using feedback from employees and other stakeholders to bolster retention efforts.