Tapping into workplace culture

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Like any organization committed to a quality workplace, you need to take the time to gauge how employees feel about the organization in order to nurture an engaged employee community.

This is doubly true in healthcare, with its ever-changing landscape, and Toronto’s West Park Healthcare Centre has taken important steps to learn how West Park groups feel about their current work environment.

West Park, a rehabilitation and complex continuing care facility in West Toronto, conducted employee and physician surveys in late May and with the results now compiled and analyzed, the Centre recently shared those results with the West Park community.

The last employee/physician experience surveys were conducted in 2011 and provided volumes of great feedback. Overall, West Park employees and physicians were pleased with their engagement at the hospital and proud to recommend it to others as a place to work. West Park scored significantly higher than the benchmark scores from the average of 10 other OHA hospitals also conducting similar surveys in 2011. During the last two years, West Park has seen significant change. A new survey was needed to discover if the changes have impacted on the work experience of employees and physicians, their commitment to West Park and satisfaction with their job.

2013 results

In total, 67 per cent of West Park employees completed the survey compared to an Ontario average of 49 per cent (48 participating Ontario hospitals). Fifty-four percent of West Park physicians completed the survey compared to 35 per cent across Ontario.

West Park continues to do well in terms of “engagement” and “being a good/great/excellent place to work,” and is among the top four hospitals of the 48 surveyed.

As in 2011, West Park continues to be one of the top-ranked hospitals in terms of employee engagement, with 68 per cent of employee respondents and 80 per cent of responding physicians rating their engagement with West Park as “positive.” All six employee engagement questions scored significantly higher than the benchmark scores from the average of 48 Ontario hospitals participating in the survey.

Some significant results include:

• 78 per cent of responding Centre employees and 86 per cent of responding physicians “strongly agree” or “agree” with the statement that they are proud to tell others that they are part of the organization;

• 76 per cent of employees and 79 per cent of physicians responding say they share values similar to the organization; • 76 per cent of employees and 93 per cent of physicians responding are “very satisfied” or “satisfied” with their current job;

• 87 per cent of responding Centre employees and 100 per cent of physicians responding rate the hospital as a “good,” “very good,” or “excellent” place to work.

West Park remained one of the four top hospitals surveyed and was above the Ontario average in almost every category.  “Overall, the survey results demonstrate the engagement of our staff and physicians and their pride in recommending the Centre to others as a place to work. Recognizing that an engaged and motivated staff are essential to realizing the Centre’s vision and strategic priorities, these survey results are very encouraging.” says Anne-Marie Malek, President and CEO of West Park Healthcare Centre.

Opportunities for improvement

Even in the best of workplaces, there are still opportunities for improvement in every area. National Research Corporation of Canada, the organization which conducted the 2011 and 2013 surveys, recommends West Park focus on demonstrating to employees that the organization values their work and that employees can trust the organization. West Park will be looking to develop initiatives and actions to address the opportunities for improvements. The data from this survey and others will also be used to inform such things as the Human Resources Strategy. As well, as part of West Park’s continuing effort to support and improve the volunteer experience at West Park, volunteers were invited to complete the Standardized Volunteer Opinion Survey. This survey is special because 59 health centres/sites with over 17,000 volunteers will be using the same survey to provide improved opportunities for benchmarking and best practices. The survey results for both employees, physicians and volunteers gives West Park much to think about and will help plan for the future. Above all, the findings and the resulting actions will help make West Park an even greater place to work.