Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 60.05
Liaison Jessica Thompson
Submission Date Feb. 15, 2023

STARS v2.2

Northern Michigan University
PA-13: Assessing Employee Satisfaction

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.54 / 1.00 Jessica Thompson
Professor/SAC Co-Chair
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Has the institution conducted a survey or other evaluation that allows for anonymous feedback to measure employee satisfaction and engagement during the previous three years?:

Percentage of employees assessed, directly or by representative sample:

A brief description of the institution’s methodology for evaluating employee satisfaction and engagement:

Human Resources sent an employee satisfaction + COVID survey to all employees (1,151) in July 2022. 626 employees completed the survey (54%). Because of the global pandemic, the typical 3-year employee satisfaction survey was modified because the institution needed more specific data about employee attitudes and needs working during the pandemic.

NMU's survey results were compared to other institutions using the same questions in an employee survey, the full report is available here: https://nmu.edu/institutionaleffectiveness/sites/institutionaleffectiveness/files/d7files/NMU_COVID_Faculty_Comparison_Report_2020_08-26.pdf

For example, results show a majority of faculty and staff members (74%) agree or strongly agree that the university took appropriate action in response to Covid-19, and that the executive leadership did a good job of sharing information (63%). Most importantly, 71% of employees agreed or strongly agreed that the university's leadership cares about the health and safety of employees. While many employees were hesitant about the University's ability to be successful during the uncertainty of the pandemic, they were satisfied with the organizational climate and believe that they can voice concerns if they don't feel safe (79% agree or strongly agree).

Many of the questions in the modified employee satisfaction survey assessed the employees' satisfaction with the institution's communication and management of the Covid-19 crisis. Responses to these specific questions can be extrapolated to represent the level of employees' satisfaction with the institution overall. Now that the peak of the pandemic is behind us, the Human Resources department is preparing to administer the regular employee satisfaction survey in late 2023.

A brief description of the mechanism(s) by which the institution addresses issues raised by the evaluation:

Many of the issues raised in the evaluation were about feeling safe on campus in face-to-face interactions with co-workers, students and visitors. University leadership used the insights from this assessment to develop the protocol for "opening" the campus in the fall of 2020. For example, one of the questions in the survey was about returning to campus (from the pivot to remote work in early 2020). University leadership reviewed these numbers; only 43.5% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that they felt comfortable returning to work on campus. Thus, more than half of the employees had concerns. In a deeper analysis, the concerns were with employees who interacted with larger groups of people (faculty, student services, dining, etc). So the university put additional safety protocols into place before people could return to campus and created the Passport to Campus program (see: https://nmu.edu/safe-on-campus/passport). This program helped to reduce anxiety about returning and interacting with others face-to-face.

The full results of the survey are attached.

Website URL where information about the employee satisfaction and engagement evaluation is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.