Why and how we share team and organizational results with employees

Transparent reporting combined with anonymity of individual scores are central to the design of Friday.

Why transparent reporting is important for organizational success

Measuring employee experience is a strong indicator that a company cares about its people and its culture. Paradoxically, it’s also an exercise that can trigger distrust and scepticism, especially between employees and senior leaders. That's why transparent reporting is crucial.

Transparent reporting is important for:

  • Protecting organizational morale. The way people feel about your organization is a precious thing. If they feel information about them is being held from them, they won’t feel fairly treated. We can’t emphasize enough how bad this feeling is for organizational morale.
  • Improving your scores. Closed surveys leave a handful of people knowing all the good stuff and all the bad stuff in an organization. They can become paralyzed by all this intelligence, because they don’t have time in their day job to meaningfully act on the data.
  • Culture building. If you make data on happiness part of the collective consciousness, then it becomes everyone’s responsibility. This makes moving the needle on the scores that matter to you most a more tangible reality. Many hands make light work, so the saying goes.

Who sees what?

Each user sees what they are part of, so employees ("participants") see:

  • Their individual results
  • The average results for their team/s, so long as three or more people have responded
  • The average results for the organization, so long as three or more people have responded

This means that everyone sees vertically up, but not horizontally across the organization. Only the individuals themselves see their own responses.

Vertical line of sight helps to uphold feelings of openness and accountability. Restricting horizontal line of site limits the amount of data individuals need to review, and restricts unhelpful cross-team comparisons. It is a model that keeps employees in touch with points in the system that are most relevant to them, without unnecessarily exposing teams that are not doing so well. The design of Friday also means that employees can feel safe to respond truthfully, knowing that their score responses are private and anonymized.

There is flexibility in Friday to increase the number of people who need to respond before a team/organization score is revealed, but it can't be reduced to less than three.

A small number of people can be given additional access which will allow them to see scores for teams and other filters within their organization (but not individual responses). This helps employees in central functions or decision-making roles to identify cross-cutting people issues, provide support to unhappy teams and celebrate the good stuff going on in the organization. Learn more about user types in Friday.

When responses are anonymous - and when they're not

Each participant has the right to choose whether or not they participate in Friday, and it's not possible to see a list of who has and who hasn't participated. Responses to questions where participants rate themselves on a scale, like "How happy were you at work this week? Very unhappy, Happy, OK, Happy, or Very Happy", are anonymous - only they can see their individual response.

Only free-text responses, to questions such as "Would you like to celebrate a success?", are attributed to the respondent, so everyone in that team/organization can see the response and who made it. In any tool like this, free-text comments can quickly turn negative and be actively unhelpful when they are not attributed to anyone. The point of these free-text questions is to aid conversations and the building of bonds - if we made them anonymous, we'd actually risk shutting conversations down more. It’s not compulsory to enter anything in the free-text boxes, but they are there if people want to make use of them (and we encourage you to do so!).

We feel that the freedom to participate or not, combined with score responses being anonymous, ensures responses will be more accurate - if people feel they 'have' to participate they may be less honest in their answers. A persistent low participation rate can in itself be an indicator of low employee happiness - including possibly a feeling that their responses will not make a difference, or have not previously been seen to have been acted upon. Remember to look after your response rates.