5.2a Workforce Engagement Case Study

OE21 Guideline: 

5.2a Workforce Engagement

Note: This Case Study refers to specific OE21 surveys and tools (spreadsheets or docs). Please try the blue link(s) below to learn more about these surveys and tools:



5.2a Workforce Engagement

Assumption: The (Elafino Sports Center) organization has implemented the OE21 5.2a Workforce Engagement process steps. The process followed and results experienced are as follows: 

Task 5.2a(1) Assess Organizational Culture - To foster an organizational culture that is characterized by open communication, high performance, and an engaged workforce, the Elafino Workforce Focus Team (WFT) used results from the Voice of Workforce Assessment (Standard 5.1 Workforce Environment). 

This web-based survey contains workforce questions and provisions for ratings (1-5) and narrative feedback. The last question in this survey is aimed at determining critical drivers of workforce engagement and high performance, by capturing worker assessments (excellent to poor) of the following factors:

  • Pay and pay increases

  • Processes for effective problem solving

  • Processes for effective grievance resolution

  • Worker development and career opportunities

  • Managers and supervisors management and support

  • Workplace safety and security

  • Workload

  • Communications Effectiveness

  • Workforce cooperation with workers and managers

  • Teamwork and teamwork opportunities

  • Empowerment

  • Job security

  • Appreciation of diverse workforce individuals and groups needs


The survey results were input to the Work Unit Satisfaction Matrix to estimate the levels of satisfaction and engagement for each Elafino Sports Center Work Unit. 

The Voice of Workforce Assessment became a HIGH PRIORITY for all Elafino focus teams and senior executives. Over time, this understanding of how the workers feel about all the items in this assessment became vital to the Elafino’s long-term sustainability and growth. See Guideline 5.1 Figure 5.1-5 Work Unit Satisfaction Matrix for the most recent Elafino assessment. 

Task 5.2a(2) Implement High-Performance Rewards System - The Elafino Leadership Focus Team (LFT) with support from the Workforce Focus Team (WFT) and Facilitator, operates and maintains the High-Performance Rewards System (HPRS)  to support, encourage and reward high workforce performance. The HPRS has three elements:


  • A Rewards Model that allocates reward (points or $) to work units based on their performance in seven (7) key areas that drive results;


  • A Work Unit Performance Assessment (survey) that captures work unit manager assessments (rating 1-5) of how well the work unit has performed in the seven key areas; and


  • A Work Unit Performance Matrix - a spreadsheet tool that imports the Work Unit Performance Assessment survey results, and calculates total reward points for seven key areas measured.


The following are HPRS Process implementation steps:


Step 1 - Set Reward Period Dates and Total ($ or Points) - The Leadership Focus Team (LFT) with the assistance of the Workforce Focus Team (WFT) sets the start and finish dates for each successive Rewards Period. Rewards periods are normally set quarterly, to keep employees motivated with more frequent rewards than annual. The Elafino LFT and WFT established the type (dollars) of rewards to be rewarded as well as the amount per period. Elafino set the rewards as $10,000 to be rewarded for each three month period, with some variations depending upon financial revenue intake and cash outflows.

  • NOTE: Some organizations cannot or will not reward their people with dollars. Points may be used as long as some points awarded translate to something of value to the receiver (time off; discounts, special trips, event or dinner tickets, or other appropriate rewards).


Step 2 - Prepare Work Unit Codes - The Elafino WFT allocated rewards to Work Units.


Guidelines and Examples:


  • All Work Units for the organization receive rewards; some more than others, depending upon their performance for the reward period.


  • Work Units have a "multi-digit code" used to identify Work Unit data submitted in the surveys (e.g., WU0005 = accounting work unit; WU0012 = IT work unit).


  • Each Work Unit has one Work Unit Leader.


  • Work Unit Leaders have a "multi-digit code" used to identify their names (e.g., WUL0002 = Adam Smith; WU0011 = Mary Thomas).


Step 3 - Conduct Workforce Performance Survey - The WFT conducts the monthly Workforce Performance Survey. The WFT Work Unit Leaders respond with measures of their Work Units. Note: The WFT audits Work Unit inputs on a random basis to ensure that measures are valid and timely. Ratings for work unit scores indicate the extent that the Work Unit meets the seven work unit performance criteria within the Assessment. These ratings represent the Work Unit's performance over the most recent three-month period. 


Step 4 - Input data into the Work Unit Performance Matrix - At the end of each calendar or fiscal quarter, the OE21 facilitator (OEF) exports the data and comments from the Work Unit Performance Survey and inputs them into the WFT_5.2a_Work_Unit_Performance_Matrix Figures 5.2-4 and 5.2-5 are examples of the Work Unit Performance Matrix with survey data inputs.

Figure 5.2a-4 Work Unit Performance Assessment (left side)

Figure 5.2a-5 Work Unit Performance Rewards (right side)



The most recent Work Unit Performance Assessment and Rewards results are shown in Figure 5.2a-4 and 5.2a-5 above. A summary of these Elafino Sports Center results follows:

  • Executive and Administration work units have highest performance (95%)

  • Hockey work unit has lowest performance (52.5%)

  • The average of all Work Unit performance was 82.8% (pretty  good)

  • An average of 331 points was earned out of 400 max (331/400 = 82.8%).

  • The total rewards for this quarter was set at $10,000.

  • The total rewards earned had a value of $6,658.

  • The amount remaining (carried to next period) is $3,342

  • Each worker in the Executive/Admit units received $76.

  • Each worker in the Hockey work unit received $42.

  • Each worker in the Figure Staking unit received $64.

  • Each worker in the Fitness Center unit received $70.


All 125 workforce members received a reward proportionate to their Work Unit's amount earned.


At this point, the Elafino Sports Center workforce is well on their way to becoming well engaged with their customers and with each other. The workforce and the managers appreciate the rewards sharing, and are beginning daily discussions and reaffirmation of the key factors that drive rewards:


1 Availability: The extent the Work Unit is available when requested or needed


2. Budgeted Cost vs. Actual Cost: The extent the Work Unit costs incurred are within their allocated budgets for the work performed


3. Cycle Time or Schedule: The extent that the Work Unit completes its assigned work on time, as required.


4. Satisfaction: The extent that the Work Unit outputs and communications are satisfactory to those who receive them, including our customers.


5. Quality: The extent that the Work Unit outputs are free (or close to free) of defects, unnecessary rework, waste or other quality problems.


6. Workload: The extent that the Work Unit outputs are helping the organization meet its workload or production goals.


7. Innovation: The extent that the Work Unit contributions or suggested innovative ideas are helping the organization improve its program outputs, outcomes, and customer satisfaction goals.


Performance Reviews - The Elafino Focus teams are attending the monthly performance reviews and paying close attention to performance indicators that affect their performance and rewards received via the HPRS process.


Figure 5.2a-6 below provides an example Trend Chart for Workforce Absenteeism, which is one of the indicators of Workforce Engagement and Performance and affects the Availability ratings in the HPRS process. Availability is the extent the Work Unit is available when requested or needed.


Figure 5.2a-6 Workforce Engagement Indicator 

The Elafino LFT (IT Manager) published the 5.2a Workforce Engagement output results on the Elafino INTRANET, and notifies all focus teams and managers of these updates.