Employer Evaluation: How It Can Benefit Your Business
While staff evaluation is a commonly used business approach to assess employee performance, identify issues potentially impacting it and uncover ways to improve it for the wider benefit of the business; employer evaluation is an equally valuable, but less commonly used approach.
However, given how important an employer’s own performance is in influencing key areas of a business, from leadership, communications, remuneration and benefits to the work environment and staff satisfaction, it’s equally important to evaluate. And while it requires careful planning and execution to conduct an employer evaluation and to obtain relevant, accurate and usable feedback from staff and other stakeholders, it’s totally worthwhile.
This blog will outline how the employer evaluation process can benefit your business and how to go about conducting such an evaluation. However, before we do that, we need to clarify what we mean by employer evaluation.
How employer evaluation can benefit your business
There are many ways in which the employer evaluation process can benefit your business, but some of the most important include:
The evaluation process can help a company to identify the strengths and weaknesses of their workforce. This then enables them to develop plans to improve performance and better meet the needs of stakeholders.
Accountability and transparency
Employer evaluation helps encourage greater transparency and accountability at work, by giving employees, customers and other stakeholder groups a clearer picture regarding the position of their employer.
Enhanced staff engagement and retention
More frequent evaluation and feedback helps keep workers more engaged and committed to their work, leading to increased job satisfaction, improved performance and lower churn.
The employer evaluation process can also help companies to meet their legal requirements for performance management such as anti-discrimination and equal job opportunity laws.
An employer who consistently performs well in meeting the needs of its stakeholders can also gain a competitive market advantage by attracting and retaining customers and the best staff talent.
The employer evaluation process can also unearth facts and information that can help with decisions about promotions, salary increases, and other issues related to work.
Potential limitations of employer evaluation
As with everything in life, as well as having an upside, there can be some potential drawbacks associated with the employer evaluation process.
However, just being aware of these can help you to limit their likelihood of happening within your own workplace.
Here are some limitations to be wary of:
Unfortunately, evaluators can have their own personal preferences that can affect how they judge an employer’s work. So, you need to be aware of this for any assessments you’re carrying out.
The employer evaluation process can be subjective too, because it depends on the thoughts and feelings of different people, who may have different ideas about how well the employer is doing.
Depending on the number of business areas you’re looking to evaluate, the whole process can take a lot of time, due to the number of resources and work that’s required to collect and analyse that data.
There may be some resistance within some companies about being evaluated. And even those that have been evaluated may be unwilling to make the changes that are required of them.
Staff may lose motivation and interest in their work, if they have any reason to suspect that the review process was carried out unfairly. Therefore, you need to be extremely mindful about how you administer your employer evaluation process.
How to carry out an employer evaluation
With that in mind, if you’re to obtain the greatest value from conducting an employer evaluation you might like to incorporate some of the following steps:
Identify your evaluation criteria
From the outset you need to define the key performance indicators (KPIs), you will use to measure a company’s performance, whether that’s employee satisfaction and retention, or productivity and profitability and more.
The data you collect about that company’s performance, from its staff, clients and other stakeholder groups can be gathered in a number of ways including workplace surveys, interviews, focus groups and other methods.
More specifically the types of staff survey you run from engagement, motivation and wellbeing to opinion, work life balance, exit surveys and more, will give you a more detailed picture of how a company is performing as an employer across key business areas. This can include anything from its leadership and communications to its processes, culture and much more.
However, if you’re to get the best possible insight you need to be asking the right survey questions. So, to help get you started with this, we offer an extensive range of ready to use and fully customisable employee survey templates.
Through analysing your data, it can help you to identify trends, patterns and details about that company’s performance strengths and any shortcomings it as an employer.
This process can be made simpler through the use of visualisation tools including graphs, charts, and tables.
When audience groups are providing feedback about their employer, it needs to include an assessment of their performance, emphasising both their strengths and any areas they can develop.
Set goals and create action plans
Once you’ve evaluated the results of your feedback, you need to set your objectives and create some action plans to help address any areas for improvement.
You then need to assign some responsibilities and deadlines for putting your action plans into action.
Monitor ongoing progress
Once you’ve finalised your action plans, you need to be continually assessing your employer’s performance and tracking the actions they’ve taken in accordance with these plans.
Communicate your results
You need to communicate the findings of your evaluation and proposed course of action with all relevant parties including the employer, managers and staff.
You can use the results to help make decision on future recruitment, wage increases and other important employment-related decisions moving forward.
Remember, employer evaluation is a continuous process that requires constant monitoring, feedback and improvement to ensure the employer is meeting the needs of its workers and stakeholders.
Whatever your level of understanding of employer evaluation before reading this, we hope you'll now feel better informed about it and why it’s important for your business.
While it’s an interesting concept, the decisions you’re currently making could be impacting the way your employees and customers currently interact with you, as well as how people in the wider world currently perceive you. So, you’ll want as much of that activity to be as positive as it can be.
However, you’ll only be able to achieve that if you’re continually gathering and acting on feedback from these stakeholder groups. If you can achieve that, you’ll be more likely to retain highly committed and productive staff, existing customers that want to stay with you for the long term and a healthy stream of new customers that want to buy from you.