One of the top ten fastest growing companies in America was experiencing 22% turnover as well as the enormous costs of downtime and hard expense associated with attracting and retraining replacement talent. A formal onboarding process was in place, but had not been assessed, so NBRI was hired to conduct Employee Onboarding Surveys.
Results showed that the fast-paced environment had provided little or no time for the onboarding process, leaving supervisors frustrated and new hires without support systems that would ensure their success, despite the fact that senior management had been assured that the onboarding process was being implemented. With hard data to support this fact, supervisors were given the needed support from senior management to take the time to fully follow the onboarding process.
NBRI’s analysis and recommendations provided senior management with the critical information needed to bring turnover rates below 10% within 6 months, and with the addition of NBRI Employee Surveys, turnover rates were at less than 5% within one year, representing an enormous ROI.
Employee Attitude Surveys
A large banking institution contacted NBRI, requesting assistance with their Employee Attitude Survey, which had been conducted for the previous five years. No measurable improvement had been realized as a result of the research, and management was understandably frustrated.
Like many employee surveys, the survey instrument had been created in-house, and upon review by NBRI, numerous biasing errors were noted, rendering the historical employee attitude survey data worse than useless – it was actually misleading. The NBRI Standard Employee Attitude Survey was substituted for the ‘homemade’ survey, and deployed by paper and online methodologies to 4,000 employees.
NBRI ClearPath Analytics showed that low employee morale was due to a non-existent recognition system. NBRI assisted the Client with the development and implementation of an employee recognition system, resulting in measurably higher employee morale, productivity, and profitability.
Employee Engagement Surveys
An international electronics manufacturer was experiencing turnover in excess of 20% when it was decided to contact NBRI. The NBRI employee engagement survey was deployed in seven languages to the more than 10,000 employees worldwide. Within only eight weeks, from start to finish, the Client had their results.
It was clear from NBRI’s ClearPath Analytics of the employee survey data that the organization’s management style was at the heart of the problem. Employees were treated as expendable, rather than valuable assets, and the trickle-down effects could be felt all the way from the president’s office to three continents around the globe.
NBRI identified the root cause of the turnover, and was instrumental in directing the Client to another partner who would provide the appropriate management style training. One year later, at the second assessment, turnover had dropped to less than 10%, and the Client had saved millions of dollars in associated costs. In addition, morale and productivity reached all-time highs, as evidenced by subsequent NBRI employee surveys.
Employee Opinion Surveys
An Entertainment Industry giant with excellent management was having difficulty overcoming the effects of the employee rumor mill. Despite frequent, open, and factual communications to the contrary, rumors persisted about impending mergers, acquisitions, and layoffs, rendering the entire employee base paralyzed.
An NBRI Employee Opinion Survey was deployed, and NBRI’s ClearPath Analytics were conducted on the data. It was evident that Working Relationships with peers and subordinates were good, but those with supervisors were suffering from a gross lack of trust. While management had sought to develop good relationships with employees through good communication, it was failing.
NBRI recommended a number of interventions, including ‘fireside chats’ between Senior Managers and small groups of employees on a regular basis, in which employees could raise issues and receive immediate feedback that included emotive responses, rather than memos. The next two employee survey assessments proved the interventions to be right on target, as relationships with management showed increases of more than 25 normative data percentiles.
Employee Satisfaction Surveys
Experiencing high employee absenteeism, one of the United States’ largest Food Services providers contacted NBRI to assess their employee satisfaction. They suspected that employee dissatisfaction was the leading cause of the chronic employee absences.
An NBRI Survey was deployed in 48 states and three languages and concluded with an 85% response rate and a 99% Confidence Level. Management could be certain that the results of the employee satisfaction survey truly represented their employees’ attitudes.
Low job satisfaction was evident. NBRI’s ClearPath Analytics determined that employees felt disconnected from the organization’s short and long term goals, vision, and mission. NBRI recommended numerous interventions to communicate management’s strategic plans to all employees and reinforce their practice in each employee’s daily activities.
Subsequent employee survey results showed significant increases on related survey questions, which impacted Total Company Job Satisfaction dramatically. Employee Satisfaction Scores improved from Weakness (below the 50th percentile of the NBRI Normative Database) to Strength (above the 75th percentile of the NBRI Normative Database) in only six months. More importantly, employee absenteeism was reduced by more than 60% in this short time span.
Organizational Assessment Surveys
A household name Retailer, known for its penchant for mergers and acquisitions, was about to double its size with its latest objective. Before doing so, however, management thought it a good idea to assess the climate and culture of the target organization through an employee survey. As NBRI had routinely conducted the Client’s employee research after acquisitions were made, the Client again turned to NBRI to gather this critical information through an employee survey prior to finalizing the purchase.
An NBRI Organizational Assessment was deployed to the target population. Employee Morale was found to be at Threat Level (below the 25th percentile of the NBRI Normative Database), and it would have been assumed that the finding was due to a lack of job security because of the impending sale. However, NBRI ClearPath Analytics identified the real problem: the employees believed that members of management routinely behaved in an unethical manner, which had been demoralizing a majority of the employee population long before discussions about a sale had even begun. While perceptions of unethical behavior were also found to drive turnover and a host of other ills, all had been attributed to the impending sale.
Empowered by the hard data collected from employee surveys, the Client put several safeguards into place in their negotiations, ultimately completing the purchase but at a substantially reduced price, saving millions of dollars. In addition, per NBRI recommendations, Values Statements were put into place and into action immediately, which directly and positively impacted employee morale, reduced turnover and absenteeism, and significantly increased productivity and profitability in the new venture.
360 Degree Surveys
A large regional bank contacted NBRI to conduct Employee 360 Degree Surveys as part of its newly implemented performance management system. Implementing 360 Degree Surveys was a solution to one of the Root Causes identified by the recently completed NBRI Employee Satisfaction Survey.
Each employee was asked to rate their peers, subordinates, and supervisors. With a 98% response rate, the results achieved were at a 95% Confidence Level. Management could be certain that the results of the 360 Degree Surveys truly reflected the perceptions of employee performance.
The survey results were incorporated into the employees’ individual performance plans. Working closely with Human Resources, company managers and employees were able to obtain constructive feedback that enabled them to improve communication skills, increase responsiveness, and understand how they were perceived by others in the workforce.
Subsequent Employee Satisfaction Survey results showed significant increases in career development, interdepartmental relations, and feedback effectiveness. Also, employee engagement rose by 20%, which positively impacted customer relations and customer intent to return.
Employee Exit Surveys
A Fortune 500 Manufacturer engaged NBRI to conduct employee exit interview surveys on an ongoing basis by telephone in order to determine why employees were leaving their employ. The surveys were conducted after the employees had physically left the premises in order to obtain the purest data possible. Although this methodology negatively impacts the response rate, NBRI consistently reaches a 95% Confidence Level. Based on this reliability, management can be certain that the data truly represents the thinking of the employee population as a whole.
Supervision was by far the overriding factor contributing to employee turnover. NBRI ClearPath Analytics provided even greater, pinpointed insight. Performance evaluations were perceived to be unfair. This drove employee beliefs in a negative manner regarding diversity, discrimination, career advancement, and a host of other issues.
NBRI recommended that the Client focus solely on the root cause determined by a thorough analysis of the employee exit interview data. Within six months of changing the employee perceptions of the fairness of performance evaluations, the scores of all items driven by the root cause increased as well. Since the root cause was driving 45% of all of the Client’s survey questions, this was significant improvement indeed. More importantly, employee turnover was reduced by over 80%, and the most common reason for leaving became ‘to start a home business.’
Customer Satisfaction Surveys
A leading hotel chain, which had engaged NBRI for employee surveys for over ten years, contacted NBRI shortly after the economic downturn of 2008. They anticipated a disastrous short-term financial picture and knew they had to take action immediately. This meant investing a small amount of money to implement customer satisfaction surveys in order to gain millions of dollars of business in an economy that had suddenly become hostile to the travel industry.
NBRI recommended its Standard Customer Satisfaction Survey, customized for the Client, but in its usual format, which has respondents rank items in order of importance before rating the Clients performance with regard to the same items. The customer survey was deployed to a small, stratified, random sample of customers – no more and no less than was needed to obtain data that was truly representative of the thinking of the entire customer population at a 99% Confidence Level, and at a fraction of the cost of surveying everyone.
The study revealed a very different root cause of customer satisfaction than had been expected by the Client. Price was not the primary driver of this Client’s customers’ intent to return. And, the avoidance of the expense of air travel was not driving the factors that make up customer satisfaction for this Client. NBRI’s ClearPath Analytics revealed that the driver of over 55% of the perceptions of this Client’s customer population was the friendliness of the staff. Even the customers were unaware of what was causing them to rate a majority of survey questions higher than they would have, had the staff been less friendly, but with ClearPath Analytics, NBRI has the capability of accurately analyzing the opinions, beliefs, and behaviors of human populations.
Per NBRI’s recommendations, the Client proactively leveraged this crucial information from the customer satisfaction survey and alleviated what could have been disastrous financial results. Indeed, the Revenue per Guest has shown significant increases with every intervention to their Root Cause, including those following the economic downturn of 2008.
Customer Service Surveys
An international service organization engaged NBRI to conduct Customer Service Surveys of its more than 3 million customers worldwide. Through a stratified, random selection process, NBRI’s customer surveys saved the Client tens of thousands of dollars on the study, as only a Representative Sample from each market was needed in order to extrapolate the findings of the study to the customer population as a whole at a 99% Confidence Level.
Deployed via the multiple methodologies of telephone, paper, and online in 5 languages, the Client selected NBRI’s Customer Service Survey for their research instrument, customized for their purposes. The Client also chose to benchmark themselves against more than 100 similar organizations in the NBRI Normative Database.
NBRI’s ClearPath Analytics showed that the high level of technical knowledge possessed by their Customer Service Representatives was driving customer perceptions of the Client being a leader in the market, as well as customer perceptions regarding innovation, creativity, and a host of other perceptions. In fact, this one root cause drove 65% of all survey questions. Per the NBRI recommendations to do so, leveraging this finding with their customers led to Best in Class scores (at or above the 90th percentile of the NBRI Normative Database), up from Opportunities for Improvement scores (between the 50th and 74th percentiles of the NBRI Normative Database), within only four months after the survey results were analyzed.
Customer Loss Review Surveys
A national chain of entertainment properties employed NBRI to study the psychological constructs of its customer base. Revenues had been steadily declining over the previous 18 months, although new customers were being added on a steady basis.
NBRI recommended the use of its standard customer loss review survey. It was believed that surveying former customers would provide more pointed data than might be obtained from present customers. The survey was deployed by telephone to a small, stratified, random sample of customers, and a 99% Confidence Level was obtained.
NBRI’s ClearPath Analytics provided keen insight into the thinking of the target population. The root cause driving down customer’s intent to return, customer loyalty, and customer satisfaction, along with 68% of all survey items, was “wait time”. Clearly, wait time was of utmost importance and needed to be minimized in every area of the business affecting the customer.
Following NBRI recommendations, swift interventions to the root cause were put into place. Within only 3 months following the analysis of the customer survey results, the scores of all items driven by the root cause were performing as Strengths, at or above the 75th percentile of the NBRI normative database. This directly, positively impacted revenues, and reversed the trend of the previous months.
Gaming & Hospitality Surveys
A major Nevada hotel and casino with over 1,000,000 visitors per year contacted NBRI for assistance in assessing their level of guest satisfaction. Being a leader in the gaming industry, the client understands the importance of analyzing the satisfaction of their guests. In addition, it is a well-known fact that guest service surveys are a best practice of global leaders.
The NBRI standard guest service survey was deployed by paper and online on an ongoing basis in order to measure their progress over time. Additional weight was given to the responses from the most profitable guests. A 30% response rate provided prelimary indications of a guest population that was willing to provide important feedback to help the property improve their guest’s satisfaction.
NBRI ClearPath Analytics identified guest wait time as the driver of 42% of all survey items. To address this root cause, NBRI recommended adding additional personnel at peak times. NBRI has the necessary knowledge and staff of organizational psychologists to analyze financials and guest service survey scores to determine the financial implications of improved guest satisfaction. Over time, as the guest wait times were addressed and decreased, NBRI determined that decreasing the wait time for this property had a direct financial impact of $1 million in revenue per average minute saved!
A West Coast Hospital with over 1,800 employees contacted NBRI for assistance in assessing the thinking of its employees. Being a leading healthcare provider, the client understands the importance of routinely evaluating the psychological health of its employee base. In addition, it is a well-known fact that hospital employee surveys are a best practice of global leaders.
The NBRI standard hospital employee survey was deployed by paper over a two-week period in order to cover all shifts, as well as weekend and weekday employees. Job title was another important demographic segregation of the data. A 93% response rate provided preliminary indications of an involved and committed workforce.
NBRI ClearPath Analytics identified a forbearing management style at work within the Hospital as the driver of 48% of all survey items. This single root cause was driving employees to be forthcoming about reporting patient errors, which in turn lowered employee stress and organizational liability, and enabled management to take corrective systemic action and reduce the number of errors made.
NBRI recommendations to leverage this positive finding were followed, resulting in increased scores of the root cause as well as all items driven by it within one year of the initial assessment. Indeed, when asked if employees would recommend the Hospital to family and friends for healthcare, the scores were above the 90th percentile for all job titles at the second assessment, an increase of over 15 normative percentiles.
Market Research Surveys
A large nationally known farming equipment manufacturer who had engaged NBRI for over a decade to conduct their employee and customer surveys wanted to know if they could leverage their brand image to related products that were manufactured by other suppliers. Could they buy and then resell these products at a premium? Would consumers equate brand trust and their existing support infrastructure with higher value? If so, how much higher value?
NBRI recommended its Standard Market Research Survey, customized for the Client. The Client also chose to benchmark their survey results against the NBRI Normative Database. The survey was deployed world-wide in 10 languages via an online methodology. Enough responses were collected to insure a 99% confidence level in the results. NBRI psychologists and statisticians then benchmarked, analyzed, and reported on the research study.
The results of the study indicated that the Client could leverage the trust of their brand and their existing support infrastructure to resell other products at a significant premium. But, that this marketing strategy would only be effective in the United States. Per NBRI recommendations, the Client scratched their world-wide marketing plan, concentrated only on the United States and the revenue began to flow. The Client’s new marketing plan was successful and potentially poor financial results in the rest of the world were avoided.
Political Research Surveys
A State legislator was trying to decide whether or not to run for Congress, and wanted to ‘test the waters’ before investing huge amounts of time and money into a campaign. He contacted NBRI to conduct a political research study.
The study showed that 47% of men and 28% of women in the State knew him. Of those, 57% and 78%, respectively, said they would vote for him. This meant that he could anticipate 27% of the vote from males, and 22% from females, if the election were held that day. With an estimated 49% of the vote, he decided to run, but he had work to do, and he needed to maximize his resources.
Armed with hard data, the candidate focused on reaching those who did not know him, and speaking to women’s issues. NBRI conducted pulse studies at 3 months and 6 months after campaign launch, and at 6 months, the data showed that 89% of men and 92% of women knew of the candidate, and that 68% and 75%, respectively, would vote for him. The candidate had achieved a majority of 65% of the vote going into the election by being guided by hard data.
The candidate easily won the election with 63% of the vote, well within the 3% margin of error of the NBRI data. The NBRI Political Research answered important questions for this candidate: should he run, what levels of confidence should he have at various points in time, and who and what should be the foci of his resources and campaign at each of those points in time.