Updated: Feb 12, 2021
I'm sure you have heard of VOC (Voice of Customer). There's always a big focus on ensuring the customer experience is great, and we couldn't agree more with that approach.
But what about the Employee? Do we ever listen to the people who speak to the customers everyday?
Enter VooP - Voice of our People.
According to Qualtrics, only 53% of employees around the world are engaged in their workplace. So we sat down and thought about how we could increase this engagement...
A recent employee survey indicated that the 3 most important factors to employee engagement is;
When the company shows appreciation for the work that an employee completes
When the employee feels “in on things"
When the workplace provides help & is sympathetic in relation to personal problems
Interestingly, remuneration is not in the top 3 most important factors for employees, but feeling "in on things" is. We interpret this to mean that you must bring your employees on the journey, allowing them to ride the highs and lows with you. We fully appreciate that there are instances where this cannot be done, but we'd really like you to ask yourself the below question;
Am I, or is the organisation that I work in, really doing as much as we can to ensure our employees feel "in on things"?
If the answer is NO, we think the concept of VOOP will help you.
If the answer is YES, we think the concept of VOOP can still help you ;)
What is VOOP (Voice of our People)?
The concept of VOOP is not ground-breaking or revolutionary. Put simply, it is a system. A system which will ensure employees are engaged and buy in to the strategic direction of your organisation.
To explain VOOP, we would like you to imagine a digital suggestion box. VOOP is a place where employees can submit ideas, pain points, system errors, technology faults and anything else that has a tangible impact on the customer-facing operations of the business.
It's important that VOOP only relates to customer-facing components of your business otherwise it could open up a whole can of worms which relate to internal bureaucratic processes (which are important, but not relevant for this concept).
The VOOP suggestion box is something that should be visible to all employees across the organisation. It should be endorsed at the highest level, and promoted to all staff. Whilst the information that your business requests to receive in your 'VOOP box' may differ, there are THREE critical components that each VOOP box must adopt;
The VOOP box must be accessible to all employees
Submitted suggestions / ideas should be visible to all employees (unless deemed inappropriate)
Every employee must have the ability to vote on each suggestion / idea
Employee feedback is like a gym membership. It's only useful if you use it
From the feedback that you collect in the VOOP box, a decision-committee must be formed to review and endorse ideas. Whilst we recommend getting back to each employee who submits an idea, it is critical that you AT LEAST get back to the individuals who submit an idea which turns into an initiative that the organisation implements. An implementation of an idea (a project) should be widely advertised internally. If done well, it will begin to foster a culture of continuous improvement - something that every organisation should strive for!
How would VOOP increase employee engagement?
As we stated above, the second most important factor to employee engagement is ensuring that employees "feel in on things". There's no better way to do this than to create projects or initiatives that are suggested from your employees. There is often a disconnect between business strategy and front-line staff feedback. VOOP would connect these dots, and ensure that employees are bought into the overarching business vision.
By developing a committee who reviews & endorses employee-suggested initiatives, your organisation could achieve a number of things;
Increased engagement - Your employees would feel like their voice has been heard. Via the voting mechanism of VOOP, the employee will also be able to understand whether their idea / suggestion is supported by a large majority of individuals, or none.
Staff upskill - The employee(s) who initially provided the feedback / suggestion should be involved in the initiative's project team. This will allow upskill / cross-skill of employees, as they gain exposure to new systems, skills and networks.
Continuous improvement culture - Once it becomes evident that your organisation is listening to their staff (and acting on this feedback), the volume of feedback will increase exponentially. You'll be amazed, and potentially overwhelmed, with the amount of great suggestions that you receive once your organisation implements the first idea.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO DISCUSS HOW YOUR ORGANISATION CAN ADOPT VOOP?
Too often, we spend exorbitant amounts of money on customer research when the answers are right in front of us. Implementing a simple system like VOOP could foster ideas, or uncover pain points that have been hidden in your organisation for a long time.
If you would like assistance in setting this up, please get in touch. We've done it before, and would love to help again!
The Bearded Man