Headlines: January 13th, 2011

Westminster City Council has doubled the response rate and speeded up the publication of staff views on change plans by using an innovative digital survey.

The council provided staff with an anonymous survey to allow them to give their honest opinions on a variety of topics and subjects, including hotly debated departmental restructuring and reorganisation.

Traditionally the council had used a ‘do-it-yourself’ survey system to monitor the mood of staff. However council leaders watched the response rate rapidly decline over recent years with employees becoming increasingly more concerned with the confidentiality of the research which was being carried out in house. Although these fears were unfounded the decision was taken to use an independent research agency to respond to staff concerns, increase employee confidence and boost response rates to provide more detailed results. The result was that the response rate doubled when compared to the previous year.

Derek Eccleston, Research Director at eDigitalResearch who supplied the technology, said: “During a time when budget and resource cuts will dramatically affect employee morale, it is important that government organisations and public sector bodies carefully monitor the mood of staff whilst remaining within these new strict budget constraints.”