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What is the employee net promoter score and why should you measure it?

What is the employee net promoter score and why should you measure it?

Jonathan Davies

Happeo

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7 mins read

Mon, Sep 4, '23  


Forbes once said, “One who never asks either knows everything or nothing.” Asking questions is valuable, and one simple question can transform your business.

Simply asking, "How likely are you to recommend us to your friends and family?” helps companies identify internal ambassadors and assess employee loyalty. This question calculates the Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS), a robust employee engagement and loyalty metric.

This article will dive deep into the eNPS, exploring its calculation, what defines a good score, its limitations, and how to maximize it.

What is the employee net promoter score (eNPS)?

The Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) is an employee engagement and loyalty metric. It’s a refined version of the traditional Net Promoter Score (NPS), which companies use to measure customer satisfaction with their products and services.

eNPS uses a simple yet powerful question to capture employee sentiment: "On a scale from 0-10, how likely are you to recommend your organization to your friends or family?" This question assesses the employees' overall feelings towards the organization and willingness to endorse it to their networks.

With overall company scores ranging from -100 to 100, eNPS provides insight into the general sentiment and loyalty of the company's employees. A higher score indicates greater employee engagement and loyalty, often correlating with improved business performance.

How do you calculate eNPS?

Calculating eNPS involves a straightforward method of grouping responses from an employee survey. You can categorize your employees into three groups based on their numerical scores in answer to the above question:

  • Promoters (scores 9-10): Promoters are your most enthusiastic employees. They are satisfied, motivated, and likely to recommend your company. Promoters are a strong force that drives your organization's reputation upward.
  • Passives (scores 7-8): These employees are generally content but not enthusiastically engaged. They sit in the middle, not particularly unhappy but not active promoters of your organization either.
  • Detractors (scores 0-6): This group represents your most disengaged employees. Detractors are less likely to advocate for the company and may even spread negative sentiments about the work environment.

To calculate your eNPS score for a given period (typically a month), subtract the percentage of detractors from the percentage of promoters. Do not factor passive scores into the calculation, but consider them part of the overall response pool. This categorization and analysis provide an eNPS ranging from -100 to 100, clearly showing overall employee sentiment.

An example eNPS calculation

Company ABC asks ten employees to provide their eNPS score. Ten employees respond, and they score:

  • 3, 5, 6, 7, 7, 8, 9, 9, 10, 10

These scores equate to the following:

  • 40% Promoters: 4x scores (9, 9, 10, 10)
  • 30% Passives: 3x scores (7, 7, 8)
  • 30% Detractors: 3x scores (3, 5, 6)

The calculation is 40% promoters - 30% detractors = 10, so ABC’s current Employee Net Promoter Score is 10.

What’s a good eNPS?

Benchmarking eNPS scores can be challenging. Scores range from -100 to 100, but anything above zero is generally acceptable. Companies and organizations measure their performance according to different standards and benchmarks.

Generally, eNPS scores are classified as follows:

  • Good: +10 to +30
  • Excellent: +50
  • Best in Class: +80

However, these numbers aren’t hard rules but only guidelines, as eNPS scores can fluctuate based on many factors. It’s essential to evaluate your eNPS score in the context of industry standards, direct competitors, and your company's unique culture and characteristics.

Tracking your company's eNPS over time is key. Use your initial eNPS as a benchmark and compare subsequent scores to assess the impact of changes or initiatives on employee engagement. If your first eNPS is +10 and your next score is +20, it signifies progress. A decrease would indicate areas for improvement.

When should you measure eNPS?

You should measure your company's employee engagement frequently so that you can detect trends and changes in employee engagement as they occur. However, maintaining balance is critical — too frequent measurements might result in survey fatigue, while infrequent or irregular ones might compromise valuable insights.

Best practices suggest measuring eNPS at least annually, but quarterly assessments are often practical across various industries. High-intensity sectors may benefit from more frequent surveys.

Beyond these regular intervals, consider conducting eNPS surveys after significant events like changes in company policies, onboarding, training sessions, work anniversaries, or exit interviews.

What’s the value of eNPS?

eNPS provides valuable insights into employee engagement, but it’s also an excellent metric for many other reasons:

It’s easy to capture

Because eNPS surveys only ask one question, they are easy to implement and participate in. This ease of use eliminates survey fatigue, resulting in higher participation rates.

It’s simple to track

One of the best things about eNPS is its simplicity. A single number result allows you to monitor your employees' loyalty easily. An eNPS chart can be beneficial when workplace changes occur since it clearly and easily represents employee sentiment.

It’s cost-effective and efficient

Since eNPS consists of a single question, it’s easy to integrate into existing communication channels, making it a cost-effective tool for gaining employee feedback. With minimal time and financial commitments, you can monitor employee satisfaction more frequently, providing actionable data.

It can improve retention

By routinely monitoring your employee net promoter score, you can identify and mitigate issues before they lead to employee turnover. Ultimately, this can foster a more stable, engaged, and productive workplace.

It shows that you care

The eNPS system lets employees know you value their opinions, increasing their morale. In turn, this leads to better engagement and commitment from your employees.

It offers honest feedback

By ensuring anonymity and encouraging honesty in eNPS surveys, you can secure unfiltered insights into your workforce's sentiment. This honest feedback is crucial to identify and address areas of dissatisfaction or disengagement within your organization, paving the way for meaningful improvements in the employee experience.

What are the limitations of eNPS?

The Employee Net Promoter Score (eNPS) is a valuable metric, but it isn't flawless. It often oversimplifies employee experiences and falls short of providing the complete picture. Consider the following limitations:

It doesn’t explain “why”

While eNPS can help gauge employee satisfaction, it doesn't explain why employees feel the way they do. There is no mention of any specific factors that impact employee attitudes, whether leadership, programs, benefits, or policies.

It doesn’t include demographics

eNPS overlooks demographic data such as age, race, gender, tenure, managerial level, or business unit. This lack of granularity makes identifying disparities in satisfaction levels among different groups challenging, thereby potentially hindering efforts to foster a diverse and inclusive workforce.

It’s not an accurate measure of engagement

eNPS primarily indicates an employee's willingness to recommend your company, not necessarily their level of engagement. Employees might recommend the workplace for reasons independent of their engagement levels, such as a laid-back environment, attractive perks, or camaraderie among colleagues.

What should you do after an eNPS survey?

After conducting an eNPS survey, interpreting the results and implementing appropriate actions to address identified problems is essential. You should:

Publish the results

Transparency is essential. Share the eNPS results with your team to foster inclusivity and demonstrate your commitment to improving any identified areas of concern, especially in the face of low scores.

Follow up

Diving deeper into the results is essential for actionable insights. Follow-up surveys with open-ended questions can provide much-needed context. Obtaining additional context is especially helpful for understanding the reasons behind each score and identifying areas needing improvement.

Keep communicating

Maintaining open lines of communication with all employees — promoters, passives, and detractors — is crucial. Understanding why they provided the scores they did can help inform your strategies for bolstering employee satisfaction and engagement.

While focusing on the detractors and the most negative feedback is tempting, it’s essential not to neglect passives or promoters. They can offer valuable insights into long-term solutions and initiatives that are already successful but can be further improved.

Monitor ongoing engagement

Continuous tracking of eNPS scores and other engagement metrics is necessary to assess your actions' effectiveness and identify new improvement opportunities. Collecting and comparing historical data can provide a comprehensive picture of the organization's evolution in employee experience over time.

How do you increase eNPS?

Improving your eNPS involves understanding your employees' experiences and taking purposeful actions to foster a positive work environment. Here are some strategies to help improve your eNPS scores.

Attempt to understand passives

Passives are employees who neither strongly promote nor discourage your organization. Despite their neutrality, their opinions are important — understanding their experiences and addressing their concerns can potentially sway them to become promoters rather than detractors.

Since passives usually form a significant portion of the workforce, one of the easiest ways to improve your eNPS score over time is to convert more passives into promoters.

Learn from negative feedback

Though difficult to hear, negative feedback offers crucial insights into what's not working. Proactively addressing issues can significantly improve your eNPS by demonstrating your commitment to enhancing the employee experience.

Recognize employees

Recognition plays a significant role in boosting employee morale and loyalty. Whether celebrating accomplishments or showing appreciation for their efforts, making employees feel valued can be a powerful driver for higher eNPS scores.

Recognition initiatives can range from simple acknowledgments to more elaborate celebrations, all contributing to a positive shift in your eNPS.

Improve employee satisfaction with Happeo

While a simplified tool, the Employee Net Promoter Score offers vital insights into employee sentiment and loyalty. Follow-up surveys and continuous employee communication can fill the gaps and provide further insights.

Platforms like Happeo are excellent tools for this purpose. Happeo's modern intranet software promotes engagement and satisfaction, acting as a catalyst for improved eNPS scores.

With Happeo, you can communicate with employees, conduct HR surveys, and analyze data. Happeo's transparency makes employees feel connected and more likely to share ideas. Furthermore, Happeo creates a positive work culture by recognizing achievement.

Contact us for a demo of our innovative intranet today.