FAQ Series: Talent Engagement Survey


What is a Talent Engagement Survey and why invest in this survey?

There is clear reported scientific evidence, that Engaged employees result in organisations which are more productive, profitable, have greater corporate citizenship and greater retention (Little and Little, 2006). Running an engagement survey is not an act of altruism, but something that makes enormous business sense. Engaged employees invests their hand, head and heart in their role performance, whilst disengaged employees withdraw themselves physically, cognitively and emotionally. A Talent Engagement Survey (TES) therefore measures the extent to which employees within your organisation are engaged (or disengaged), providing scientific insight into your organisation and staff perceptions.

A TES identifies in-depth causes of work disengagement and serves as an early warning system for areas in which and from which the organisation is most vulnerable to talent loss. This in-depth data provides a mechanism from which Organisational Development interventions and actions can be developed and implemented to prevent talent loss and employee disengagement. It provides valuable people analytics, informing quality organisational decisions.


How to construct a valuable Talent Engagement Survey?

It is important that the survey does in fact measure engagement and provides reliable results that can be utilised for decision making. When constructing a Talent Engagement Survey for your organisation it is therefore vital that it is developed in line with and on the basis of a scientific model of engagement, but is still flexible enough to be customised to the needs of the organisation. An example being the Omnicor Talent Engagement Survey. The survey comprises of well research and scientifically validated questions that measure engagement factors, and additional custom questions from which further valuable insights can be drawn regarding the organisation, examples include, employee perceptions regarding a recently implemented performance management system or changes in the organisational structure. An Engagement survey is valuable when it delivers a true reflection of engagement within your organisation and provides leadership and Human Resource professionals with the ability to gather further meaningful insights of employee perceptions.


How to implement a Talent Engagement Survey?

When implementing a Talent Engagement Survey change management and communications are key. It is important to explain why the survey is being conducted, how the results will be used and answer the important question of ‘what’s in it for me?’. A further key factor in collecting meaningful and honest data is anonymity. Staff feel much more secure in being honest when a TES is run by a third-party organisation. An additional element that Omnicor has introduced to our Engagement survey are Focus Groups, these sessions offer a more intimate opportunity to explore the areas of low engagement or concerns. The selection process for the focus group(s) are randomised and voluntary, ensuring fairness and a representative sample of your organisation.


How to meaningfully report on the findings of the Talent Engagement Survey?

Once the data is collected, it is vital to present the data for easy analysis. The report or method of data visualisation should be easy-to-understand and extremely user friendly, allowing for meaningful insights to be observed. When carefully conceived, the construction of the survey will allow the organisation to drill down to the any meaningful segments that exist. Typical segments include Race, Gender, Age, Role, Level and Region. The question being asked is whether the experience of engagement differs within any segment. Once these otherwise invisible dynamics become visible, the organisation is empowered to act as it sees fit to remedy the situation. The survey results are merely the start of your journey, the next step is to implement sustainable and purposeful change.


Authors – Amelia Samuels and Hilton Rudnick