Employee survey results reflect positive changes

March 21, 2024

Employee survey results reflect positive changes

Eighty-seven percent of City of Johnson City employees are satisfied overall with their job, according to a recent employee survey conducted by POLCO.

Nationally recognized for their engagement surveys, POLCO compared the responses of Johnson City employees to 30,000 government employees working for cities of a comparable size. In 2019, 60 percent of all Johnson City responses were below national benchmarks. In 2023, all responses met or exceeded benchmarks, indicating a significant improvement in a number of key areas.

Areas with the greatest improvement include:

  • Employees feel their department fosters a respectful atmosphere.
  • Employees have a clear departmental vision.
  • Employees feel that they are involved in creating innovative solutions to problems.
  • Employees understand the expectations communicated to them.

“City management values feedback and believes staff members should be involved in the City’s decision-making process,” said Assistant City Manager Steve Willis. “We want to build a positive work culture where employees are provided with the tools and resources needed to be successful. In previous employee surveys, City staff provided important insights that guided administration toward policies to improve organizational culture with an emphasis on relationships, processes and procedures. We have much to be proud of with these survey results, and we’ll build on the results to see continued improvements.”

Compared to 2019 results, several areas have notably improved in 2023:

  • 80 percent feel their job is important to the mission and vision of Johnson City, an improvement of 17 percent
  • 67 percent have confidence in governance, an improvement of 16 percent
  • 75 percent feel leadership is acting in the best interest of the community, an improvement of 20 percent
  • 75 percent feel the City is headed in the right direction, an improvement of 12 percent
  • 75 percent feel that the City fosters a respectful atmosphere, an improvement of 28 percent

In addition to an improved culture, employee relationships with supervisory staff has risen and, in some cases, the change is significant. Examples include:

  • 75 percent of employees feel that their supervisor communicates information in a timely manner, an improvement of 40 percent
  • 74 percent of employees feel that their supervisor encourages them to come up with innovative solutions to problems, an improvement of 36 percent

Nearly half of all employees completed the survey, a slight increase from previous response rates.

“Our employees are our greatest asset,” said City Manager Cathy Ball. “This survey reflects the respectful, empowering culture that we’re striving to develop, and we’ll use their feedback for continuous improvement.”

Lastly, the survey revealed that 95 percent of employees plan to work for the City of Johnson City a year from now.

The next employee survey is targeted for 2026.