OKSEES report published, culture and engagement improving at OMES
By Christa Helfrey
The Office of Management and Enterprise Services was 1 of 72 agencies that participated in the third-annual Oklahoma State Employee Engagement Survey, the yearly assessment to gauge workforce culture within state government. With record numbers of Americans quitting their jobs and employers competing to combat national staffing shortages, tools like the OKSEES give the state a strategic edge to recruit and retain dedicated professionals to serve the people of Oklahoma.
The OKSEES is driven by confidential employee feedback and provides leadership with valuable data to identify strengths and areas for improvement – both can play a vital role in employee enthusiasm, productivity and, ultimately, their decision to stay or leave the state workforce.
The results are compiled in the OKSEES Statewide Summary Report, which measures and benchmarks employee engagement, satisfaction and intent to stay. This data allows the state to make decisions in real time and adjust goals as needed. For OMES, the 2021 survey results reveal high marks across the board, establishing the central services agency as a top workplace within the State of Oklahoma.
"Once again, OMES staff agree our agency is one of the best places to work within state government,” said OMES Deputy Director Dana Webb. “We continue to enhance our culture and employee engagement because we know that our people are our greatest assets. Over the last year, we were continually recognized for our contributions to partner agencies and state leadership. I know we can continue this momentum in 2022."
Employee engagement, satisfaction and intent to stay all increased from last year, ranking OMES in the Top 2 among the state’s 12 largest agencies for the third consecutive year.
The OKSEES defines employee engagement as “the extent to which employees are committed to their work, motivated to give their best effort and absorbed in their work responsibilities.” OMES scored 84% engagement in 2021, a 2.1% increase from 2020 and a 6.4% increase from 2019. The agency’s three most engaged divisions were Administration, General Counsel, and Budget, Policy and Gaming Commission, all with engagement rates of 95% and above.
Satisfaction measures employee feelings about their work and workplace through feedback relating to satisfaction in job roles, leadership, teams and agencies. At 84% employee satisfaction, OMES ranks No. 1 among large agencies in the state workforce, growing 4.8% from 2020 and 8.5% from 2019.
Intent to stay is driven by the question, “I see myself working at my agency one year from now,” and acts as a key indicator of employee turnover. Intent to stay at OMES was 85%, a 1.3% increase from the previous year and a 4.1% increase from 2019.
KEY DRIVERS OF ENGAGEMENT AT OMES
The OKSEES identifies key drivers through the highest and lowest scoring items that most closely relate to overall employee engagement. High-scoring items are viewed as strengths, while low-scoring items are treated as opportunities for improvement that reveal areas of high impact within agencies. Key drivers of OMES employee engagement in 2021 concerned the ability to meet career goals with the agency, encouragement to innovate, autonomy and teamwork. Strengths included alignment with OMES mission and goals, effective supervisors, understanding of job performance measurements and safe work environments. Opportunities for improvement included agencywide communication, upward mobility and pay rates.
OMES SURVEY PARTICIPATION
Out of 996 OMES employees invited to complete the 2021 OKSEES between Sept. 13 and Oct. 11, 734 individuals, or 74% of the workforce, participated. This is down only 0.41% from 737 in 2020. Finance had the highest participation rate of 93% out of all OMES divisions.
“We see favorable scores for overall satisfaction, engagement and intent to stay,” Neidig said. “Employee feedback indicated significant improvement since 2019 in areas regarding open and honest communication from leaders, responsiveness of leaders to the needs and concerns of employees, and executive leaders caring about employees as well as leadership supporting a work culture that encourages employees to be themselves. It's great to see employee feedback being used to improve our workplace and culture.”
OMES Workforce Planning manages OKSEES data each year to equip state leaders with constructive information they can use to make the State of Oklahoma a more engaging, fulfilling workplace to serve citizens. In addition to the Statewide Summary Report, Workforce Planning provides a dashboard that compiles personalized results for each participating agency. From their dashboards, agencies must formulate and submit action plans by Jan. 31 to address areas for improvement.
New this year, OKSEES results will drive professional development pathways included in the 2022 Statewide Learning Services catalog – available later this month – so state employees at all levels can harness their potential through in-person training, webinars and self-paced LinkedIn Learning courses.
Have you activated your LinkedIn Learning account available to you as a member of the state workforce? The State of Oklahoma is excited to partner with LinkedIn Learning to provide employees unlimited access to 1,600 online courses taught by real-world professionals at no extra cost.
Activate your FREE license from one of the weekly activation emails (subject line: Unlock access to your LinkedIn Learning account). Don’t have the email? Submit an OMES Service Desk ticket with your information to request an email today.