Is Your Company Really Ready to Hire?
An organizational assessment can help you find the answer
Risch Results was engaged by a three-year-old company ready to find key talent to support its growth. The company had been experiencing turnover in the last year, so the CEO asked us to learn more about the reasons why, and identify how attrition impacted the company culture. We did this by carrying out an organizational assessment—the process of interviewing every employee, both in person and anonymously, within an organization/division/department to collect valid information about the organization’s performance, as well as the factors that affect performance. Results demonstrate areas of competence, the need for improvement, and possible risks. They also provide insight to help support investment and restructuring decisions.
A large part of my expertise is focused on organizational assessments, from earning a master’s degree in organizational psychology from Columbia University, to my tenure as a business consultant. Now, as the head of Risch Results, I’ve witnessed the positive effect an organizational assessment has on a business. The end has always justified the means, and I knew this exercise would yield valuable information for our client.
Identifying Key Trends
There is a range of ways to gather employee feedback, from the simple suggestion box or online survey, to the more complex, such as an organizational assessment. The greater the depth and breadth of information, the more opportunity there is for improvement and growth.
Over the course of three days, our team interviewed all 20 employees. We identified trends, some of which emerged after just a few interviews, and by the end of the process, we had a well-rounded and informed snapshot of the organization. While every employee had his or her own suggestions and complaints, in the end, almost everything could be categorized into a few key areas. We presented to leadership anonymous examples from the interviews in the context of the trends that we identified. This allowed leadership to “hear” the employees feedback without identifying employees. As I predicted, the assessment provided information the organization could use as a roadmap for improvement.
While carrying out an organization assessment is an important step to business improvement, the act of having completed one isn’t enough. Employers need to “close the loop” by reviewing all responses with the employees in manageable groups and together identify ways to take action.
The Improvement Process
Reducing turnover is a process. Employers need to communicate they understand the need for change, acknowledge overriding concerns/complains, work with employees to outline a plan, and communicate the planned changes to employees. Employers don’t need to immediately fix every issue that every person mentioned, but they should look at the trends and key issues and then focus on a solution one at a time. Many times, it’s the minor issues that make the biggest difference… and these are often inexpensive to correct.
Keep the Conversation Going
Job satisfaction will be quickly dashed if employees aren’t informed about the progress made on their issues and complaints. One and done won’t cut it—meaning, one discussion about the findings from the assessment isn’t enough. Employers should periodically review the findings with their staff and keep employees updated on progress, as well as immediate or longer term changes. This can be done weekly, monthly, or whatever timeframe is appropriate for the business.
The simple act of listening to employees by checking in and sharing progress will show the team that the leadership cares. Asking and listening form the foundation for organizational improvement, and sets the stage for providing a workplace where employees want to be every day.
For more information on how an organizational assessment will benefit your business, please contact Risch Results.