We are committed to making Avery Dennison a great place to work and ensuring our employees feel valued, heard and engaged. Our annual engagement survey takes the pulse of our employees in several areas of the employee experience including, but not limited to, confidence in our business strategy, diversity and inclusion, and employee development.
As we look to kick off our 2018 Employee Engagement Survey this June, we sat down with Jeremy Chura, senior director, Human Resources at Avery Dennison, to reflect on last year’s best-in-class results and discuss the future of our employee experience. Jeremy joined Avery Dennison in 2002 and, in addition to leading our employee survey process, he heads HR for our RFID business and intelligent labels platform, aligning HR plans with business strategy to drive profitable growth.
With tens of thousands of employees across more than 50 countries, accumulating an 86% company-wide participation rate is no easy task. How does Avery Dennison encourage its employees to take part in the Employee Engagement Survey?
I believe our participation rates are so high because employees know that Avery Dennison pays attention to the results, and takes action. The “so what” of the survey is how the company responds, and not just focusing on the scores. We also do a lot of work to ensure that taking the survey is as easy as possible, including installing survey kiosks at many of our sites. Our goal was to make the survey brief and relevant; a survey with about 20 questions that employees can complete in five minutes or less.
I would imagine confidentiality and trust are also key?
Yes, particularly at the local level. Because of a variety of cultural factors, it’s vital to ensure that employees understand their responses are confidential. All survey data is captured and processed by an outside third party; no one at Avery Dennison has access to individual responses. Our goal is to make employees feel comfortable to express themselves honestly, and confident that their voices are being heard.
Beyond the annual survey, what other tools does Avery Dennison use to measure the employee experience?
In addition to the annual process, we conduct a series of pulse surveys throughout the year on various topics. We generally choose a random, representative sample of employees across all levels, businesses and regions. Last year, we conducted pulse surveys on performance management and employee growth.
Beyond surveys, there are countless, less formal mechanisms that leaders use to stay connected to employees such as regular check-ins, team and department meetings, town halls, multi-source feedback and volunteer events.
How has Avery Dennison’s survey changed over time?
Over the past few years, we have asked fewer, but more relevant questions. We have 18 core questions that every business at Avery Dennison asks, allowing comparisons over time and across groups. That said, we tailor a few questions to each business. Last year, we introduced an inclusion index, which helps measure our progress against our diversity and inclusion efforts. We have also recently employed a more sophisticated analysis that helps us prioritize the elements of the employee experience that are most important to engagement and morale.
What’s supporting the 82% company-wide engagement rate?
Well, the analysis I was just referencing consistently indicates the single greatest influence on our engagement score is that employees in all of our facilities around the world are confident in our business strategies and know how their jobs have an impact. Another key driver is the strength of our culture and values. This year’s refresh of our company values will ensure that this advantage is sustained for years to come.
How is Avery Dennison improving the employee experience as a result of the survey?
The action planning that results from the employee survey is often locally driven, based on the unique needs of the region or site. Company-wide “confidence in our business strategy” is consistently the most important element in predicting employee engagement. So, year after year, every level of leadership in the organization focuses on articulating a clear vision and strategy for all employees, which Avery Dennison continues to leverage.
As we listened to additional feedback through the pulse suveys, we’ve also invested in opportunities for employees to grow their careers and acquire new skills. We’ve taken action to provide greater access to online learning, management and skills training, and support for ongoing education.
Where is there room to grow in regards to employee engagement?
Coincidentally, the place where we have room to grow is making sure every employee has room to grow! I’m proud to work for a company with such a positive employee experience, where we live by our values but never settle for less than the best we can accomplish together. Supporting personal and professional growth will continue to be an area of continuous improvement for us.
What are some of the challenges ahead for employee engagement?
Our industry and markets are getting more competitive and complex every day. In order to maintain our company culture and performance edge, we must feel comfortable to share our honest feedback and listen intently to our colleagues. Our agility in responding to this feedback and considering ever-changing cultural and generational preferences will determine the sustainability of our exceptional employee experience for years to come.
We thank Jeremy Chura for his time and for sharing his valuable insights on the Avery Dennison Employee Engagement Survey. He continues to encourage every employee to “share your voice!”
Learn more about working at Avery Dennison: www.averydennison.com/careers.
For more information about Avery Dennison, visit www.averydennison.com.
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