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Data Informs Microsoft HR On Employees’ Struggles

Microsoft’s HR department made a big change from its traditional embrace of employee engagement to “employee thriving.” That's thanks, in part, to its data analysis of its own workers. So reports Human Resource Executive.

microsoft 80658 640small“We consider [employee engagement] to be a lower bar than thriving,” says Dawn Klinghoffer, who heads people analytics at Microsoft. “Thriving means being energized and empowered to do meaningful work.”

Microsoft used so-called daily pulse check-ins of 2,500 employees and longer surveys to study how they were feeling and other tools to better understand how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted daily work experiences.

Microsoft learned that 81% of employees who received no support from management said they were dissatisfied, according to data it analyzed between October and November in 2020. Work-life balance had fallen by 13% between April and November 2020.

As global staff who were working remotely were exhibiting signs of burnout and the company saw productivity go down, HR leaders realized that remote employees were not taking paid time off. So Microsoft established five wellbeing days for its global employees in 2021 and urged managers to take PTO to help their staff feel comfortable doing the same.

“We found that when people did take vacation time, they had a higher perception of their work-life balance,” Klinghoffer says.“We pushed the organization to say, we need managers to model taking time off, even if they’re not going anywhere.”

Read the full article from Human Resource Executive.

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