Skip to main content

How-To

How to measure employee wellbeing in a remote working world

Measuring employee wellbeing in the remote working world isn’t easy — but it’s not impossible.

Marcus Thornley

Technologist

Unleash Your People Wellbeing initiatives have also been shown to give companies a boost in the battle to recruit and retain top talent.

  • A happy workforce will also be better placed to cope with busy, or potentially stressful work periods.
  • When the pandemic strong-armed businesses into working remotely, there were signs to suggest this could improve levels of wellbeing.
  • However, there were also several drawbacks — isolation and loneliness.

A happy team makes for a successful organization. Studies have shown there is a strong positive relationship between employee wellbeing, productivity, and a company’s market performance.

Wellbeing initiatives have also been shown to give companies a boost in the battle to recruit and retain top talent.

It isn’t difficult to figure out why. Happy workers will be more engaged and motivated, as they aren’t having to balance trouble in wider life with their work responsibilities. This also results in a reduction in sick days being taken, preventing a further drop in productivity.

A happy workforce will also be better placed to cope with busy, or potentially stressful work periods.

When the pandemic strong-armed businesses into working remotely, there were signs to suggest this could improve levels of wellbeing.

Workers would no longer have to endure stressful and expensive commutes, and many enjoyed having the flexibility to organize work around other responsibilities.

However, there were also several drawbacks. Working from home keeps teams physically separated, and without the social interaction of the office, many developed feelings of isolation and loneliness.

Further, the lack of a ‘break’ between work and home meant that it was easier for work to spill into an employee’s wider life, resulting in burnout.

Monitoring wellbeing was traditionally done through analyzing physical cues such as expression, or tone of voice in conversation. However, this no longer applies to remote teams.

Let’s take a look at how you can keep your team happy in this new world of work.

What makes up employee wellbeing?

The factors that play into wellbeing will differ from organization to organization, and for the most effective results, you’ll need to think about how your team determines its happiness. There are though several factors that will apply to almost every company.

The first of these is the level of bonding among your organization. Does your team feel connected? Do they feel as though they belong to a wider workplace community?

Isolation is one of the biggest contributors to negative wellbeing among remote workers, so ensuring that team members feel like they’re part of a broader unit is key!

Just as important here is looking at the support that workers receive from colleagues and the company in times of strife. It isn’t enough to simply feel connected too, there must also be processes in place for employees to feel valued, and for them to receive recognition for work.

The second is the level of work-life balance within your team. As mentioned, an improper balance of work and home priorities contributes to burnout, so you must help your team to find an equilibrium.

Finally, you’ll need to look at worker satisfaction. Are they able to complete their work to a good standard? How do they feel about their work environment – can they work comfortably, and do they feel content with the level of communication within the company?

Measuring it remotely

There are two main approaches to measuring wellbeing. Qualitative data gathering looks at the personal accounts of your teams to gauge their overall feeling, and quantitative data looks at ‘hard’ metrics such as KPIs, activity time, and data.

Qualitative approaches would see you deploying tactics such as focus groups, polls or one-to-one feedback sessions.

Using videoconferencing technology can help you to replicate a physical focus group as best as possible.

Software such as QuestionPro allows you to create team pulse surveys, to identify exactly how your team is feeling. If you’re looking for a ready-made alternative, or are unsure what questions to include – Hubble’s Workplace Strategy tool provides powerful, personalized insights regarding the satisfaction of your team’s home working setup. 

Keeping abreast of your team’s experience will allow you to create an accurate picture of your company’s wellbeing so you can maintain it at a high level.

Quantitative methods allow you to look at the more objective side of things. This includes tracking worker progress against KPIs and activity data. Tracking people against their objectives could help to signal whether wellbeing is deteriorating or not.

For example, a failure to complete tasks could show that a team member is being allocated too much work, or that they may be losing commitment. Using a service such as Monday will allow you to keep track of things all in one place.

Employee wellbeing is the key to running a successful company, however, monitoring this in the remote working era can be difficult.

Utilising technology will allow you to track any changes in this vital metric, letting you enjoy the benefits of a more efficient organisation.

More like this