Survey Results

The project necessitated extensive research which included surveys with nearly 400 respondents, divided between entrepreneurs and workers, with the latter group facilitated by GWU as a project partner. The findings from these surveys were further validated through three national round-table events, involving over 40 companies to which both SGI and GWU contributed significantly.

The collection and evaluation of data from an extensive survey covering 175 companies and over 200 employees.  The survey exercise was a less straight-forward process than initially expected in order for the collection of the required quota.   In the case of employers, the questionnaires were collected both online and physically.  Physical questionnaires were prepared and distributed during a large-scale (unrelated to the project) MEA event.  In the case of the employees survey, the process was conducted entirely online and respondents were given an option of questionnaires in both English and Maltese versions to ensure full understanding and participation.

The questionnaires enquired about management approaches, strategies and employee behaviour.

All three National Round Table events commenced with an overview of the project and rationale behind the research undertaken.  On all occasions, the research expert appointed by the project gave an extensive overview of the findings of the surveys undertaken amongst employers and employees.

Employee Feedback Evaluation

The main findings of the Survey concluded that:

i) the sectors identified as priority for the project were those with the highest number of respondents – Hospitality & Tourism 26.2%; Wholesale & Retail (including import/export) 13.2%; Professional Services 11.7%;

ii) the most prevalent changes to the workplace following COVID-19 and ensuing disruption were: Online meetings (25%); Remote working policies and similar initiatives (22%); Introduction of wellbeing and employee support initiatives (12%); Orders over internet/mobile platforms (10%); Redesign of office, workplaces and shopfloors (10%); New training initiatives (9%); New digital promotion channels (9%) and Changes to logistic channels for sourcing and deliveries (8%).

iii) 59% of employees declared that their companies’ mainly catered for was the domestic market. One in every three employees said that their companies were export-oriented and the remainder (8%) said that their company sold both locally and abroad.

iv) 46.2% of employee respondents said that their job changed as a result of transformations necessitated during or after the pandemic. 11.2% of this figure said that their job changed most extensively.

v) Almost 46% of employees surveyed responded that the transformation rendered their place of work more efficient, resilient and sustainable. 10.2% of this figure said that the extent of the improvement was 100%.

vi) 28% of employees surveyed said that the communication process preceding the transformation was weak. A further 20% said it was neutral. The rest (52%) said that it was satisfactory, strong or even excellent (the latter in 15% of the cases)

vii) 43% of employees surveyed said that the changes were communicated well to them and that they felt in control throughout the process. Almost half that amount said that despite changes being well communicated, they felt uneasy. One in 5 respondents said that changes were not communicated well but they still felt in control whilst 16% said they felt uneasy as a result of poor communication.

viii) Almost half of respondents (47%) said that they were not involved (consulted) in the process preceding transformation. 15% gave a neutral answer whilst 38% said that they were involved (of which 12% said totally involved).

ix) 32% of employees surveyed responded that the transformation rendered their work easier and another 30% replied that the outcome of the process had a neutral effect. This may indicate a flawed process of transformation lacking in the re-engineering element. 38% of respondents said that the transformation rendered their job more complicated – 10% of which said that it was now much more complex.

x) 55% of employees reported that they felt that they experienced minor change in the manner in which they interacted with colleagues post-transformation. Almost one in four (24%) reported major change. 21% reported no change.
xi) 70% of employees said that their organisation introduced new or improved products or services. The remainder said that it did not.

xii) In terms of structured performance management models, over half of respondents (53%) said that their company follows one. 42% said that their company did not have one. Concerningly, a further 4% said that the company had a framework in place but it was not effective.

xiii) The above was substantiated by the fact that a further 42% of employees responding to the effect that their employers measure performance objectives and targets. A further 34% said that they did not and the remainder 26% replied neutrally.