“I am given enough freedom to decide how to do my work.”
“My organisation’s values are aligned with my personal values.”
Those are just a few of the questions asked in a sample employee engagement survey sent out to workers at a firm in Singapore. The survey technology itself is engineered by local startup EngageRocket, housed in the city-state’s entrepreneurial hub Block 71.
The Human Resources (HR) cloud-based tech company provides its clients with real-time insights, impacting their bottom lines with cold hard data. The company generates revenue via a time-based subscription model.
The startup runs two types of surveys: a regular employee engagement survey and a “360 Multi-rater Survey”, which allows the employee to be reviewed by their direct superior, those who report to them directly, and peers.
A typical EngageRocket survey can be done on a web app, and all results are said to be kept confidential: employers will only be able to see an aggregated score, and for teams with fewer than three members, no score will be given.
Founded by Leong Chee Tung and Dorothy Yiu in October 2016, the HR-focused tech company provides its clients with real-time insights, impacting their bottom lines with cold hard data.
Leong used to be a Director at Gallup Southeast Asia, and Yiu was the Head of Gallup’s Southeast Asia operations.
“An important loop is closed when employers are able to understand how their employees feel,” Leong told KrASIA in an interview.
This is referred to as the ‘service-profit chain’, he added. According to The Harvard Business Review, good policies result in satisfied, loyal and productive employees who then create better value, attracting and retaining more loyal customers, who then spend more.
“A lot of market education had to happen,” said Leong. While big multinationals might already be accustomed to doing bi-annual surveys to gauge employee satisfaction, this is not the case for small business owners in Singapore. However, things are changing with many firms in the region catching on, he added.
It has a diverse client base of over 30 big and small firms: from cosmetics retailer Sephora to pharma-retailer Watsons to the Global Indian International School. Even a construction firm has engaged their services, getting insights from their employees on a weekly basis. Its clients can also choose how often they want to send out these surveys, and customise the questions according to their needs.
“The biggest insight has come actually from the slight change in business process that comes from running short, higher frequency surveys,” added Leong.
“By matching the surveys to business rhythm, business leaders are able to track the motivational levels and productivity of their teams in cadence with other metrics like inventory levels, profit, customer data, or output yield. This allows for powerful, timely action to be taken to prevent catastrophe caused by disengaged staff, and allow leaders to keep their fingers on the pulse of their teams,” he said.
Still nascent, the HR startup market in Southeast Asia is made up of mostly job portals, with only a few firms targeting other areas. EngageRocket’s main competitors are still the big players like Gallup and Aon.
Going forward, the firm is looking at potentially exploring other areas within HR, becoming a one-stop shop for such matters.