How to Implement Employee Feedback Loops And Why

Feedback loops help businesses make better choices to increase productivity. Discover the benefits of employee feedback loops

February 2, 2023
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Open communication is one of many ways to cultivate a healthy work environment. It’s arguably the most crucial.

Companies nowadays are searching for strategies to maintain employee engagement, improve productivity, and retain their top personnel. They’re offering better perks, flexibility, and better pay. But, all these become significantly less attractive when employees feel their input does not matter in the business.

Today's workforce is driven by the desire to make positive changes, to do work that matters, and to work for organizations that value their opinions. One method for making employees feel acknowledged and valued is by implementing feedback loops. 

What is a Feedback Loop?

A feedback loop is a continuous process that involves asking for and utilizing consumer or employee input to enhance your business operations. 

In a feedback loop, employees or customers share their opinion on the business or its products, which the company applies to its operations, and submits the results for review again. Hence, why it’s called a ‘loop.’ 

There are two main types of feedback loops in business. They are:

  1. Negative Feedback Loop
  2. Positive Feedback Loop

What is a Negative Feedback Loop?

Negative feedback loops focus on consumers and their reviews, criticism, and feedback. It does not mean that all feedback is bad or negative. Businesses use negative feedback loops to improve their offerings, improve product design, boost customer experience, and boost customer satisfaction.

You can collate customer feedback for your negative feedback loop from reviews, emails, social media, surveys, and more. 

What is a Positive Feedback Loop?

A positive feedback loop is when a company listens to constructive comments or criticism from its employees with the purpose of improving employee satisfaction, business operations, and the internal layout of the organization.

A positive feedback loop is usually internal-facing and takes the form of employee surveys, exit interviews, performance reviews, entries in suggestion boxes, emails, and more. It is also reciprocal.

What are the 5 steps of a Feedback Loop?

There is no one-size-fits-all strategy for establishing your feedback loop. For instance, a business that requires all its staff to be onsite will not have the same feedback loop as a business that has employees working remotely all over the world. 

Nonetheless, an efficient feedback loop should follow these five steps.

1. Identify your goals

Always ask why? What are you seeking feedback for? What will you do with the feedback obtained? Your objectives should be clear from the start because it informs the entire process. For instance, if you want to know why people are leaving and how to make employees stay, conduct exit interviews and pulse surveys. 

Developing other aspects of your feedback loop is significantly simpler after your goal has been determined.

2. Pick your feedback method

You have your goal, now it’s time to choose how you receive your feedback. Remember to pick a medium that’s accessible to your employees or customers. As we said earlier, your feedback loop tool will depend on how your business is structured. 

Virtual tools would better suit predominantly remote teams, while methods like anonymous boxes can work with physical offices. 

You can also choose to create surveys for your employees or ask them to reply to open-ended questions

These days, a simple all-in-one tool lets you gather and visualize data/feedback from your teams, no matter how remote they are. Companies have moved from the traditional feedback method and your classic excel sheets to easier and faster tech that automates the entire feedback process.  

Find out how Assembly collates and organizes employee feedback for businesses.

3. Collect and analyze your feedback

Once you’ve got your method down, set your timeline for feedback collation. When all the feedback has been gathered, we move to analysis.

An analysis is much easier with structured data, that is, quantitative data — like ratings. Conversely, it’s harder to make sense of open-ended responses, otherwise known as unstructured data or qualitative data. But you don’t have to run from it. Unstructured data provides insightful information that you might miss in quantitative data.

Instead of avoiding open-ended feedback due to its complexity, use employee feedback software to analyze your qualitative data and translate it into actionable insights.

4. Act on the feedback

The feedback loop is incomplete without action. Make sure to use the insight in your analysis to change your internal process (if it’s employee feedback), or your products (if it’s consumers).

Remember to inform your employees that you’ve implemented their thoughtful feedback.

5. Close the loop 

Contrary to what you may think, a feedback loop isn’t an endless cycle of input and output. If it is, then management may not be listening as well as they should. A feedback loop should have a distinct end, to give way to future loops.

Closing a feedback loop will involve implementing the feedback, notifying the concerned parties, and asking your employees for their opinions on the modifications. 

How do Feedback Loops Help with Employee Performance?

Feedback loops help you facilitate improvements in every aspect of your business. Not only do they lead to better CX and products, but they also increase employee productivity. When your employees feel heard, they become more motivated to do their job.

The benefits of feedback loops to business operations include:

1. Employee retention

Employee turnover is at an all-time high, with numbers expected to be 50-75% higher than companies have previously seen. People are leaving, and they’re leaving fast.

Feedback loops help companies lower their turnover rates and improve employee retention by creating a platform for your workforce to voice their concerns about your work environment. It also helps if you actually act on these concerns instead of brushing them under the table.

2. Employee engagement

Recent studies have shown that four out of ten workers who are not part of a feedback loop begin intentionally disengaging from their jobs.

Feedback loops show workers you care about them and want them to feel welcome. It tells them that they’re valuable and encourages them to take part in company initiatives.

3. Improved collaboration

Employee feedback loops break down the tension between managers and employees when handled correctly. This enhances team cohesion and fosters a more cooperative workplace atmosphere. Additionally, it provides managers with the opportunity to learn and improve their skills.

4. Sharpens your competitive edge

Your billion-dollar idea or transformative hack might just be a survey away. Feedback loops harness the most innovative ideas from talented individuals in your workplace. These tips and opinions help you build a business that not only leads in job satisfaction but also in your specific industry.

How to Implement Feedback Loops

Knowing what your employees expect from you is the first step to a successful workplace. And a feedback loop is the fastest and easiest way to do this. To ensure you are effectively leveraging the insight you’ve acquired, consider doing the following. 

1. Use feedback tech

Collecting employee input can be difficult, so you should take time with it. But there’s no need to weigh yourself down with manual analysis when there are feedback tools that can do the work for you in half the time.  

2. Make it a feedback exchange

Feedback is not one-sided. It’s a 360-degree process. Feedback could be employee to employee, employee to manager, manager to employee, and manager to manager. Adopt an open mind when dealing with employee opinions, and learn how to give feedback. Receive your feedback with grace, and relay yours with respect. Always add positive input along with your opinions for improvement. 

3. Integrate your feedback loops

Although they may look different, positive and negative feedback loops have the same aim. To improve your business, inside and out. Therefore, you should try to integrate your loops to get a full view of your business and what you need to change.

4. Show what you’ve done

It's crucial to demonstrate to your staff how their input influences the organization to everyone's advantage. If you don’t show it, then it never happened.

Finally, do not fear change. The business space has evolved and will keep evolving. You must learn to adapt or risk being left behind. 

Create Automated Feedback Loops With Assembly

Positive and negative feedback loops are crucial factors that determine employee performance and customer satisfaction. They also increase employee engagement. Consistent feedback lets managers and employees know what’s expected of them and make necessary changes. They also improve communication and collaboration between managers and their teams. 

Assembly’s feedback tools help you collect feedback in a quick, simple, and cost-effective way. Our offerings can be customized to suit your business, regardless of size or location. Want to know how we can improve your feedback loops? Sign up for free or contact our experts to explore how Assembly can work for you.


Browse our Free Employee Recognition Guide

Get the foundational knowledge on creating an employee recognition program that boosts employee engagement and helps them feel valued.

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Employee recognition guide

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Assembly SOC 2 compliant?

Yes, at Assembly, security is a top priority. Each quarter, we have ongoing security work that is everyone’s responsibility. While we maintain a strong security posture, it was important for us to prove to our customers that we do everything we claim to do. This led us to pursue a SOC 2 Type II report that would provide evidence of our compliance with industry gold-standard security practice.

What's the ROI for employee recognition?

There is study after study showing that employee recognition leads to increased engagement. This in return creates an environment where employees are happier and more motivated which increase productivity and reduces voluntary turnover significantly. In order to filled critical roles, companies tend to spend nearly twice the value of an annual salary. Assembly is an investment in your employees that supports your bottom line.

Does Assembly offer longer-term contracts?

Yes, we will offer contracts for companies with longer-term agreements to help larger customers have more certainty around future costs.

The minimum agreement term is a 12-month subscription.

Does Assembly offer onboarding support?

We do and for FREE! Any new customer needing further support to get started with Assembly to ensure you're set up for success can request custom onboarding support. Improving your employee experience is about much more than just using our amazing software; it’s about transforming your business to create a workplace that people love. That’s much easier to do with the personal support and advice from our passionate people experts.

Is there a free version of Assembly?

Yes. We offer a completely free plan for up to 50 team members. This plan is intended for teams or organizations that are looking to get started with an employee engagement tool. Keep in mind, this plan is limited in features.

All customers can open an Assembly account for free and get started without a credit card. Then you can change plans as necessary.

How much do rewards cost?

At the time of redemption (when your employees exchange their points for a paid reward) you'll pay face value. If a reward is a $10 Amazon gift card, your cost will be $10. All paid rewards are billed for on a monthly basis.

The good news is that you don't have to pay for rewards upfront because we only charge you when points are redeemed, not when they're earned.

Does Assembly offer discounts?

We offer discounts or educational or charitable organizations. In order to secure a discount, you'll first need to book a demo with a customer support specialist.

For all other organizations, we are willing to consider longer-term agreements in exchange for discounts. To set up annual plans or longer, you will need to book a demo with a customer support specialist.

How do I cancel my plan if needed?

If you're on a month to month plan, you can go here and cancel anytime. If you're having concerns or need help setting up your account for success, you can always book a demo with a customer support specialist.

If you're on a longer-term custom plan, you'll need to reach out to your customer support specialist to cancel your account or email us at support@joinassembly.com.

What customizations are available?

Great question! You can customize your core values to match your organization's to boost and track alignment. You can change your currency from the 🏆 emoji (our default) to any emoji of your choice. You can swap our logo for your own. You can also set up company culture rewards such as, "Lunch with the CEO," "Buy a book on us," and so much more!

Who can give or receive recognition?

While we recommend a peer to peer set up where anyone in your organization can give or receive recognition, you can set up Assembly however you want. If you need to limit the people who can give or receive recognition, that's perfectly fine and can be done from your Admin, here.

What integrations are available?

Assembly connects to the tools your employees use every day to offer an easy, seamless experience with minimal change management.  

Assembly has integrations with HCM/HRIS systems like ADP, Google, Office 365, and Slack. We also integrate with communication tools like Slack and Teams so you and your employees can access Assembly wherever they work now.

What's your average adoption rate?

That depends on the company's permissions set up. That said, over 90% of the employees on Assembly's platform are recognized on a monthly basis. That means nearly every employee across all of our customers are receiving regular recognition from their peers, managers, or leadership. We're extremely proud of this.

Must rewards be set up to use Assembly?

They are not required. You can use Assembly without having rewards set up. However, we don't recommend it if you intend to have a high adoption and usage rate. You can always keep the costs down by offering internal culture rewards that are fulfilled by you internally.

Are points required to use Assembly?

No, you can remove allowances from anyone or everyone. It's up to you but we do recommend using points whether they're worth a real dollar value or not. Companies that use points have a much higher engagement rate even if those points don't exchange for real dollars.

Could find the answer you are looking for?

Please schedule time with an expert and we will help you to get all your questions answered