Workplace experience and well-being surveys in a university department (University of Helsinki)

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Issues and Targets
The offer was developed to map whether the experiences of men and women, and also natives and foreigners, differ concerning workplace culture and well-being, motivate equality measures, and raise awareness concerning diversity issues in the unit.

Description of Offer/ Action
Tailor-made survey for our department on work well-being and experiences at work, repeated every 3-4 years. The survey is available in the native language as well as in English.

Implementation Approach
The equality and work well-being group of the department designed a survey on an electronic form. The survey was sent to all the staff members with a deadline for answering, and several reminders before the deadline. A summer worker created histograms of the results with staff divided into four subgroups (native women, foreign women, native men, foreign men). The results were presented and discussed in a work well-being seminar involving group work, after which thoughts and suggested measures provoked by the results were collected.

Formal Requirements
Anonymity and non-recognizability of the answerers must be secured, the person analyzing the raw data should be an outsider to the community to ensure that she/he cannot identify individuals from the answers. Approx. 1-2 months of the summer worker’s working time and 20 hours of planning time from each of the equality and work well-being group members.

Results and Modes of Action
Results revealed that women and foreigners are less satisfied with their workplace experience than mean and natives, and the awareness of the diversity challenges was significantly raised. Several equality measures have been motivated by these findings.

Success Criteria and Possible Obstacles
For representativeness, it is important to achieve a high response rate. This can fostered by the head of the unit being the person who sends the invitation to answer the survey. The questions should be written in a form that staff members understand them easily, avoiding on one hand vague and too general, on the other hand legal or bureaucratic expressions.

This Offer is Part of the Category
Gender-sensitive organization culture