SET UP FOCUS GROUPS WITH EMPLOYEES TO DETERMINE RELEVANT TOPICS
One of the main control points of ‘human quality’ is employee satisfaction; which should be measured and balanced in the same way as customer satisfaction. It is crucial to the success of the survey that the employees feel that the survey is their own. They should therefore be included in designing the survey.
- They should therefore be included in designing the survey. It is naïve anyway to think that a survey meant to illustrate the areas/problems improvement possibilities that are relevant to employees can be designed without their collaboration.
- The best way to involve the employees is to ask them which elements of their job are important to them and also which of these elements, in their view, should be improved.
- One effective method for collecting such information is to set up employee focus groups with participants from different departments of the company.
- The aim is to collect the information from a small representative group of employees; usually two to three groups with six to eight participants each are enough to represent the employees.
- When a group meets the agenda for the meeting is presented by the person who is in charge of setting up the system for measuring the satisfaction of the employees.
- After that we recommend that the employees receive a short introduction (30 minutes) to the rules of brainstorming with affinity analysis and then the group starts with its own brainstorm and affinity analysis. The issue to brainstorm might be formulated as follows:
What are the important elements of my job which should be improved before I can contribute more effectively to continuous improvements?
The result of each focus group will typically be 30–50 ideas which are grouped in 5–10 main groups (co-operation, communication etc.). An analysis of the two to three affinity diagrams will show overlapping ideas so there is a need to construct an overall affinity diagram which is the input to the next step: designing the questionnaire.