Best practices to understand and address the needs of employees across tenure
Oftentimes, we speak about generational differences (those entitled millennials!) or age differences (older folks don’t understand new technologies!) in our employee feedback data. Last week, CultureIQ took a deep dive into a similar but notably different demographic category commonly included in employee feedback surveys – tenure, or how long someone has been with the organization.
First, to clarify, though there is often a correlation between tenure, age, and job level, as practitioners we should not assume that these demographic factors are interchangeable. Our annual benchmark study reveals some key trends to be aware of based on tenure alone. Depending on the tenure make up of your organization’s population, these trends could provide helpful insight into your organization. Below, we categorize employees into three key buckets based on tenure and provide a description, key trend and considerations for each.
Description: Enthusiastic about role and optimistic about company culture
Trend: Employees who have been with an organization for <1 year scored on average 9% higher on engagement compared to 1 – 5 year tenure ranges.
Key Considerations: onboarding programs that continue past 30 days; coaching and mentoring; job shadowing; clear career growth trajectories
Description: Skeptical about changing culture; eager for more responsibilities
Trend: Results tend to plateau between 1 – 15 years
Description: Tendency to stay with organization, desire for career opportunities
Trend: Generally as engaged as those in the mid-tenure phase; sometimes scores rise again for this group in certain areas
Key Considerations: Recognition for accomplishments; serving as mentor; discussion about career growth; provide opportunities to be heard
During our webinar we discussed these trends as well as how to apply them to your organization by following three steps:
- Identify the tenure make up of your organization. Does your organization tend to skew toward shorter or longer tenure?
- Compare and contrast your results for engagement and individual questions within the survey with an external benchmark. Where are there unexpected gaps?
- Based on what may have differed from the benchmark, pick an area to focus on and dig deeper. This may be related to specific question.
Next time you are digging into your annual engagement or pulse survey results, take a peek at how tenure may be playing a part in your organization’s employee experience.
By Rea Abrahams & Jennifer Stoll