The ultimate metric for gauging workplace happiness: eNPS in all its glory

4 min read

A company’s culture influences every email, interaction, and client engagement. It can be a deciding factor in whether a company thrives or fails. However, measuring something so intangible can be challenging.

At HappyHQ, we’re proud to assist our clients in doing this through our culture model and culture mapping. Among all the crucial people metrics, one stands out as significantly impactful – the Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS). eNPS is more than just a number; it represents the collective voice of your workforce and their sentiments. It captures the emotional state of your employees and tells you whether they’re happy, loyal, and most importantly, whether they would recommend your company.

What is eNPS and why does it matter?

eNPS is a single-question survey measuring how likely an employee is to recommend their workplace as a great one. It typically ranges from -100 (everyone’s a detractor) to +100 (everyone’s a proponent). Unlike other complicated metrics, eNPS is refreshingly simple.

According to the Gallup survey, only about 15% of the workforce are engaged, and engaged (and happy) employees are more supportive of company objectives, and more likely to stay. 

HappyHQ’s Happier People at Work Graph

How to measure eNPS

The eNPS is measured through a single question:

“On a scale from 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend [Company X] as a place to work?”

The respondents are then categorised as follows:

  • Promoters (score 9-10)
  • Passives (score 7-8)
  • Detractors (score 0-6)

To calculate your eNPS, you need to deduct the percentage of Detractors from the percentage of Promoters. For instance, if 20% of your audience are Detractors and 60% are Promoters, then your eNPS would be a healthy +40. An eNPS score between 10 and 30 is considered ‘good,’ while those between 50 and 70 are considered excellent. An eNPS score above 80 is likely in the top percentile in almost any industry. Anything above 0 is deemed an acceptable score, which means an equal split between Promoters and Detractors.

How to interpret and act on eNPS results

Your eNPS score is an excellent indicator of your employees’ overall satisfaction and engagement. A high eNPS means that most of your workforce is happy, loyal, and willing to recommend the company as a great place to work. On the other hand, a low or negative eNPS can be a red flag, indicating a potential dissatisfaction or disengagement among employees.

By regularly measuring and monitoring your eNPS, you can track changes in employee satisfaction over time. Sounds simple, right? But the value of eNPS isn’t just in its straightforwardness — it lies in the action you take from the score.

Leveraging eNPS for a People-First Culture

With eNPS, you can identify areas where your company falls short and take actionable steps to improve employee satisfaction and engagement. But it’s not just about the numbers; it’s about creating a culture that prioritises people over profits.

By understanding the ‘why’ behind the score, you’ll understand where to direct your efforts. Here’s how we take that eNPS and turn it into action for our clients:

🔄 Get regular feedback: Continuous, real-time engagement is key. Use the eNPS as the starting point for ongoing conversations, insights, and feedback.

🔍 Make it transparent: Share the results widely — and ensure that everyone in the company knows that their voice is heard. Transparency builds trust and drives engagement.

📊 Track progress: Use eNPS as an ongoing indicator of your culture’s health. Set goals and track progress over time to see how changes impact the score.

🎉 Celebrate successes: When eNPS scores improve, take the time to recognise and celebrate those wins with your team. It’s important to acknowledge their efforts.

🎯 Set realistic goals: Creating change is about setting achievable steps forward. Determine your aim (a +10 point eNPS bump, for example) and strategise how to get there.

🚀 Take action and show results: If you ask for feedback but never act on it, you create a culture where employees’ voices are just noise. Show them the results of their participation by actually making changes and communicating those changes.

eNPS as a growth indicator

The beauty of eNPS extends beyond People and Culture into the realms of finance and strategy. Companies with high eNPS scores often outperform their competitors in terms of growth and profitability.

If eNPS scores are good, investors can view that as an indicator of healthy internal systems, and a solid bet for the future. It’s a metric that, quite literally, adds value to the company.

eNPS mistakes to avoid

Companies striving to enhance their scores must be wary of common pitfalls that they might encounter along the way.

Treating eNPS as a one-and-done exercise: Collecting the score is just the beginning. It’s all about continuous improvement, Using the score as your reference.

Not neglecting passives: While many companies concentrate only on Detractors, it’s crucial to remember that Passives form the majority of your workforce and offer potential for enhancement.

Ignoring the holistic employee experience: Every part of the employee cycle — from onboarding to offboarding — influences eNPS. It’s not just about big engagement surveys but the day-to-day experiences.

In summary:

At its core, eNPS is as much an indicator of your company’s culture as it is of employee satisfaction. It tells a story of connection — or lack thereof — between your employees and your company. A high eNPS often coincides with an environment where employees feel heard, supported, and part of a vision that excites them. It’s a number that can clue you in on whether you’re building the kind of workplace that defines your company’s future.

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