Top 6 takeaways from our communications survey

Thank you to everyone who took our Internal Communications survey in January. More than 2,500 people responded (18 percent response rate)! We are always looking to improve how we provide clear, consistent, and relevant information to those that need (and want) it. Here’s what we’ve learned, and what we’re doing about it.

Major themes from the survey

1. Noon News ranks superior

Noon News is the No. 1 source where faculty and staff get information and also where they prefer to get their information.

Tip: The most important announcements are at the top and mentioned in the subject line. And stay tuned for more changes coming soon, moving more of the most important information toward the top.

2. Supervisors are also important communicators

Supervisors and other leaders are essential to effective communication within our organization.

  • Many managers are looking for consistent information to communicate effectively with their staff. We are working on improving the tools and resources that mangers can use to do this!
  • More than 45 percent of all respondents and more than 50 percent of nurses prefer to hear about what is happening within UI Health Care from their manager.
  • Unit huddles/department meetings/team meetings also ranked well in how staff prefer to receive information (33.3 percent) and how they currently receive information (34.4 percent).

3. Biggest complaint: Too many emails!

These emails come from many sources, but we are working on it! Last year, we saved about 600 broadcast emails from entering your inbox by consolidating them into Noon News. And we’re starting to work with more departments on the use of targeted emails. Tip: You CAN opt out of some UI mass emails.

4. Greater transparency desired 

People want greater transparency and more communication from leaders. Good news: To help improve this, we are planning regular forums with VPMA and Dean Brooks Jackson, MD, and town halls with CEO Suresh Gunasekaran.

Also, the Office of the Chief Medical Officer has set up a Blind Spots Reporting System to report any issues or concerns to UI Health Care leadership for them to address.

5. I want to hear more about . . .

Based on comments, the most common things people want to hear more about are financial/budget updates, HR information, and construction projects or future plans.

Brooks Jackson’s next forum, which is scheduled from noon to 1 p.m. Tuesday, April 16, in the East Room (Elevator F, Level 8), will focus on financials (more details coming soon). And read an update soon in Noon News about ongoing construction projects from Capital Management.

6. Where do I find . . .

Employees sometimes have a hard time finding what they need on The Point and/or The Loop. We will work on a long-term solution to address this; in the meantime, we’ll try to better utilize these available resources. To clarify the differences:

  • Noon News: the daily email push; archived on The Loop
  • The Loop: Institution-wide news, staff announcements, events, employee links, and more; everything important in Noon News is also on The Loop (and searchable), even if it’s linking to another site, like The Point. The Loop is an open website and is easily accessible off campus.
  • The Point: UI Health Care’s intranet, behind a firewall, primarily used for departmental information and collaboration within departments or groups.

Word cloud from the open-ended questions of our survey

Want numbers? Here are some more results

Question: I know where to get the information I need to do my job.

Result: 86 percent of our respondents agreed or strongly agreed.

Question: How do you CURRENTLY learn about what is happening within UI Health Care?

Top responses:

  1. Noon News: 76.6 percent
  2. Co-workers: 53.4 percent
  3. My supervisor/manager/chair: 46.4 percent

Question: How do you PREFER to learn about what is happening within UI Health Care?

Top responses:

  1. Noon News: 61.7 percent
  2. My supervisor/manager/chair: 46.5 percent
  3. Targeted email sent directly to me or a small group: 44.9 percent

Question: What information or topics are you most interested in hearing about from UI Health Care?

Top responses:

  1. Human Resources (benefits, pay, policies): 61.8 percent
  2. UI Health Care future plans: 61.1 percent
  3. Events for employees on campus: 54.6 percent
  4. Clinical services you and your family can use: 49.7 percent
  5. Professional development opportunities: 49.3 percent

Question: How well informed do you feel about the following topics?

  • Most respondents felt “very informed” about the daily census.
  • Most felt “somewhat informed” on:
    • Quality and safety initiatives
    • Patient experience initiatives
    • Updates on new and departing leaders, faculty, and staff
    • National health care issues
    • Administration changes
    • Epic tips and changes
    • HR updates
  • And “not well informed” about our financial performance

Question: How often do you find what you need from The Loop and The Point?

The Loop: Out of the 80.5 percent that do use The Loop:

  • 3 percent “always” or “often” find what they need
  • 7 percent “occasionally” find what they need

The Point: Out of the 83.2 percent that do use The Point:

  • 8 percent “always” or “often” find what they need
  • 2 percent occasionally find what they need

While Marketing and Communications can impact institution-wide communications, many of the comments we received were in regards to departmental communications. We encourage you to talk to your supervisors if you have ideas for improving communication within your department. And let us know if we can help!

Want to see more of our results? Or didn’t take the survey and want to give us some feedback? We’re always open to ideas. Email the-loop@uiowa.edu.