UCSF to Conduct 2011 Staff Engagement Survey

Susan Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH

Chancellor Susan Desmond-Hellmann

Beginning Monday, March 28, UCSF will survey more than 14,000 staff members to gauge the level in which they are engaged in helping the University achieve sustained success across research, teaching and patient care activities.

As the second largest employer in San Francisco, UCSF has conducted staff surveys in recent years (2008, 2006, 2003 and 2001) as a way to acquire critical feedback on how the University can help individuals and the institution reach their potential.

The survey is an essential tool to get a snapshot of the sentiments of UCSF staff, a diverse workforce that provides essential support to the University’s mission.

“At UCSF, we strive to build a work environment that is conducive to fulfilling our advancing health worldwide mission,” said UCSF Chancellor Sue Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH. “As a leader in research, teaching, and patient care, we must continually assess what we do well, and where we can improve to stay on the leading edge.”

Gaining a better understanding of what staff thinks about their role in the University, how they are managed and how they feel about the workplace environment is an important part of addressing the chancellor’s “people” priority.

“The people priority is not just about recruiting and retaining great employees, it is also about creating a supportive environment and cultivating strong and capable managers,” she said.

Creating a supportive work environment is one of seven strategic directions outlined in the University’s first-ever strategic plan, which was released in 2007. Over the years and in response to previous employee surveys, UCSF has worked on multiple fronts to develop programs for mentoring, career advancement, professional development and work-life balance for both faculty and staff.

On Monday, March 28, UCSF staff will receive an access code via email for the online UCSF 2011 Staff Engagement Survey, which will be open for three weeks. A similar survey will be sent to UCSF faculty. The results of both surveys will help shape UCSF’s focus areas for fiscal year 2011-2012.

Assessing Staff Engagement

This year UCSF has selected a new survey administrator Gallup Organization, an international company with headquarters in Washington, DC, that provides a variety of management consulting, human resources and statistical research services.

Gallup will hold staff opinions in complete confidence; no personal references or other information related to staff identity will be revealed. The answers will be analyzed and provided as a summary report to UCSF.

After analyzing the survey data, UCSF will create action plans, working with managers, to help make the work environment more engaging and effective. Survey results ultimately aim to help focus each person, team, department, and business unit on improving performance and achieving positive results.

Survey results also will be used to benchmark UCSF’s employee engagement levels against the most recent data Gallup collects from around the world. Gallup’s employee engagement work is based on more than 30 years of in-depth research involving more than 17 million employees, according to the company.

UCSF is using a shorter and more targeted 18-question survey format to reduce the time it will take staff to participate, which is estimated to take about 10 minutes to complete.

“We hope you will take some time to think about your experience of working at UCSF and share your feedback through the responses you provide in this important survey,” Desmond-Hellmann said.

Photo by Elisabeth Fall/fallfoto.com