The employee experience is changing. In the past, many people stayed with the same company for years— perhaps even their entire careers. But this is no longer the case. With new generations entering the workforce come new attitudes towards work. Where salary was once the most important factor for many, flexibility, collaboration and shared values are now key factors behind employee retention. For businesses, this means that attracting and retaining the best talent is becoming increasingly difficult. And that’s where the employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) comes in. Essential for measuring and tracking employee loyalty, this metric should be an indispensable part of your business toolkit.
In this article we cover everything you need to know about the metric. We’ll take a look at defining the eNPS question and how to calculate your score. Furthermore, we will also share some of the most effective ways to utilise your eNPS, allowing you to start making improvements to the employee experience at your company.
Table of contents
- What is the employee Net Promoter Score?
- What are the key benefits of using the eNPS?
- How to calculate your employee Net Promoter Score
- What is a good eNPS score?
- How to improve your eNPS
- Limitations of the eNPS and how to overcome them
- Ready to get started with eNPS?
What is the employee Net Promoter Score?
eNPS is an employee experience metric that allows you to measure how loyal and engaged your employees are. It’s based on the Net Promoter Score (NPS), which is one of the most popular metrics used to measure customer loyalty.
Just like the NPS, the core of the eNPS comes down to one simple question:
On a scale of 1-10, how likely are you to recommend our company to friends and family?
Your respondents (employees) are then sorted into three categories, depending on the score they give:
- 9-10: These employees are your Promoters
- 7-8: These employees are your Passives
- 0-6: These employees are your Detractors
Promoters are the employees who are most loyal to you as an employer. They are likely to be highly engaged at work and satisfied in their role. This is great for them as individuals and can lead to higher profitability for your business. They are likely to promote the business through positive word of mouth.
Detractors are your unhappy employees. Unlike your promoters, they are more likely to be unsatisfied with you or their role. They will not positively promote the business, and may be at risk of spreading negative word of mouth.
Passives are your neutral employees. They may generally be happy enough with their role and you as an employer, but they’re more likely to be receptive to offers from other companies.
What are the key benefits of using the eNPS?
It’s easy to use: The eNPS question is easy to distribute, answer, and report on. You’re able to get an overview of employee loyalty and engagement at your company quickly.
You can monitor how your employees feel over time: Because of its simplicity, the eNPS is the perfect metric to measure and compare the employee experience over varying periods of time.
It’s good for benchmarking: The quantitative nature of the eNPS lends itself well to being a benchmark for you to measure your own performance against.
It can help reduce employee turnover: To begin improving the employee experience, you need to understand how they feel about it. The eNPS is the first step towards getting the insights you need to make sure staff are happy and engaged.
How to calculate your employee Net Promoter Score
Your eNPS score is very easy to calculate. You simply minus the percentage of Promoters from Detractors. Passive employees (who scored 7 or 8) are not counted in the calculation (but they definitely count. More on this later).
Company A receives all of the eNPS surveys back from their employees. Of 100 employees:
55 (55%) score between 9 and 10. They are promoters.
27 (27%) score between 7 and 8. They are passives.
18 (18%) score between 0-6. They are detractors.
eNPS = 55% – 18% = 37
Company A has an eNPS score of 37.
What is a good eNPS score?
eNPS scores can range from -100 through to 100. Technically, anything above 0 is considered an acceptable score. This would mean a completely even split of Promoters and Detractors at your company. It makes sense, therefore, that you should start feeling slightly uncomfortable when the balance at your business starts to tip in favour of Detractors.
Unlike the customer equivalent—the NPS—industry doesn’t seem to be as big of a deciding factor on what scores to expect or aim for. Country and culture might, however, with European companies reporting more neutral eNPS figures as a result of people being generally more reserved in their scoring.
So what eNPS score should you be aiming for? When it comes to the eNPS, the best benchmark is your own company. As we’ve said, you should be using your employee Net Promoter Score to measure and improve your own progress over time. You certainly don’t want to fall into the negative numbers, and the sky (or a score of 100) is the limit!
How to improve your eNPS
Use the metric as part of a more comprehensive employee feedback program
The employee Net Promoter Score should be used as a springboard for further investigation and discussion. You can include the question as part of a larger employee engagement or satisfaction survey, for example. This gives you the opportunity to include additional questions and open-text response areas. This extra detail and feedback will help you to consider your eNPS in a wider context, and understand where improvements can be made.
Find out what makes your Promoters, Detractors and Passives tick
Whatever you do, don’t become complacent. This applies to all three categories. With Detractors, you need to find out what is making them unhappy and fix it. In terms of Promoters, your job is to find out why they’re so satisfied and keep it that way. And don’t forget about your Passive voters, who are always one eNPS survey away from become Detractors if you don’t work to understand them.
Track your score and analyse it in the context of your business
The eNPS is the perfect metric for setting benchmarks, targets, and tracking your performance over time. Posing the question regularly helps you to keep up with how your employees are feeling. You will also be able to get a sense of how various factors are impacting your score throughout the year. For example, you may notice peaks or dips in your score that coincide with various business initiatives and events. This kind of contextual analysis will give you a better idea of what is impacting your score and where you need to focus your improvement efforts.
Be transparent and follow up
As with any kind of employee feedback, it’s essential to let your staff know that you’re actively listening to them. This will involve openly discussing your eNPS—no matter what number it is—and your plans for working with it. Providing you also have other qualitative feedback alongside your score, let your employees know the actions you plan to take and then check in again once you’ve followed through. People value transparency, and if your staff see that you’re actively invested in understanding and bettering their experience, this in itself can lead to an improved score.
Focus on improving employee engagement across your organisation
Employee engagement is a significant deciding factor in employees becoming promoters. The link is obvious: if your staff are having positive experiences at work they’re much more likely to be advocates of the company. Improving engagement involves many different aspects of the employee experience, from development opportunities to positive reinforcement and shared values. But don’t just guess which of these aspects are more important to your employees— ask them.
Limitations of the eNPS and how to overcome them
The simplicity of the eNPS can also be considered one of its limitations. While the metric is great for getting an overview, benchmarking and tracking progress, it doesn’t provide you with any additional detail. What this means is that while you have an overview of how employees are feeling, you don’t have the qualitative insights necessary to understand why.
Therefore, as we’ve explained, it’s necessary to include the eNPS as part of a more comprehensive employee feedback program. In this way, you’re able to get your quantitative overview, but you can also ask additional questions to get the actionable feedback you need to start making improvements. This is what will put your eNPS into context and help you understand what it means and what actions you need to take next.
Ready to get started with eNPS?
Netigate’s employee engagement survey with Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) lets you measure your staff’s engagement quickly and easily. We offer a 30-day free trial, so you can get started right away!