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Improving engagement and embedding new organizational values

Using Willis Towers Watson Pulse Software at Nomad Foods Europe

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June 15, 2018

The use of Pulse Software allowed Nomad Foods Europe to make quick progress on employee engagement by helping to identify which issues are most important.

Nomad Foods Europe is a market leading frozen food company with a rich heritage and iconic brands such as Birds Eye, iglo and Findus. The company was formed in 2015 after a series of mergers and acquisitions. It employs 3,800 people in 17 countries, with nine factories. Its success is built on a reputation for innovation and understanding what the consumer wants from frozen food.

A year after Nomad Foods’ formation, the company rolled out its new “Our Way” values. According to Tim Kensey, HR Director Corporate & Engagement, “The ‘Our Way’ values are a key statement of what’s important to us as a business and also the behaviours that are required to drive our future success. After launching the new “Our Way” values to the new organisation, we wanted to run a survey to establish a base line and to understand how and where we should focus to improve."

Nomad Foods logo with images of peas, fish sticks and veggie burger


“Our Way, Our Voice”

The “Our Way, Our Voice” survey, launched in April 2017, was one of the first global initiatives for the new organization and Willis Towers Watson provided support through all stages, from questionnaire design to survey administration, results reporting and action planning.

As a result of the survey, the executive team set targets based on making quick progress in key focus areas. To understand how well they were doing and assess the impact made through market unit and functional action plans, they decided to run a second pulse survey in December 2017. According to Hayley Allen, Senior HR Business Partner, "The aim was to measure progress in the key areas we had targeted as critical for the business. We wanted to run a short and simple survey, and to do that we licensed Willis Towers Watson Employee Engagement Software, so we could run it ourselves."

The December pulse survey asked 11 questions. The first 10 questions were carried over from the April survey and measured progress on sustainable engagement. The eleventh question was new, designed to assess the effectiveness of action planning. The survey also included an open question to collect qualitative feedback. According to Tim, "Where possible we chose questions from the Willis Towers Watson database, as we want to continue to benchmark ourselves against other Fast Moving Consumer Goods Companies and High Performance Organizations."

Hayley set up the December survey in Willis Towers Watson Employee Engagement Software, re-using the “Our Way, Our Voice” branding. The pulse survey was administered in English, German, Italian, French, Spanish, Norwegian, Swedish, and Finnish. In April, they had used some paper questionnaires, but in December, they moved to 100% online and mobile administration. According to Hayley, "We used QR codes to share the survey link, which most people, even in the plants, did on their mobile phones, and we got a great response rate of 80%."

Willis Towers Watson Employee Engagement Software has allowed us to make quick progress on employee engagement. It means we can rapidly address topics that we know are important to employees. An agile approach to employee surveys is important because that's how we work as a business and HR operates in the same way.”

Hayley Allen | Senior HR Business Partner at Nomad Foods Europe

According to Tim, "One reason we got a good response rate is that the survey was a simple and quick experience for employees. And because the survey is still clearly a Willis Towers Watson survey and hosted on Willis Towers Watson servers we didn't hear any concerns over anonymity. In the software, you can set the minimum group reporting size, which we kept at five, the same as in April."

Hayley also configured the online results reports for market units and functions. This included mapping the groups' December results back to April, so each manager could see a trend analysis, as well as a comparison to Willis Towers Watson norms. According to Hayley, "The software is intuitive and easy to use. The most technical part of the process is the historical mapping. But that's a critical thing to get right, as the pulse survey was about measuring the improvement we are making at all levels."

The overall pulse survey results showed that the company was making good progress on embedding the “Our Way” values and that, as a result, more employees feel part of one company. According to Tim, "The pulse survey showed us the progress that has been made and where more focus is needed."

Next Steps: An Overall Listening Strategy

According to Tim, "The next step for us is to use Willis Towers Watson Employee Engagement Software for other surveys, as part of an overall listening strategy. We will introduce a consistent process for exit surveys, as different market units currently do different things. We also want to focus on key talent groups such as graduates in order to understand their overall experience and journey within the organization. And we will also run another “Our Way, Our Voice” survey to ensure we keep focused on improving engagement and performance."

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