The Basics: Why, What, When and How
What is an employee climate survey?
A climate survey is intended to examine the full range of Instructional and Research faculty, Officers of Administration, Classified staff, and Graduate Employees experiences related to working at the UO. These experiences are central to whether members of our community feel engaged, included, and respected, which are important foundations for thriving and for professional success.
Why is a positive climate important?
Creating a welcoming, inclusive, and respectful environment is central to our mission as a public institution and a research university dedicated to the free and open exchange of ideas. A positive, inclusive climate is essential to achieving our individual and institutional goals of creating outstanding educational experiences for students, a working environment where Instructional and Research faculty, Officers of Administration, Classified staff, and Graduate Employees can thrive and achieve, and a university community that fosters research excellence, inclusive teaching, well-being, and a sense of belonging for all. This work can be coupled with other institutional initiatives in support of creating an inclusive, equitable environment.
Why is the University of Oregon conducting a climate survey?
In support of the UO’s commitment to fostering equity, inclusion, and a respectful workplace environment for all, the university is conducting a workplace climate survey. The idea to conduct a climate survey originated from faculty and staff during a diversity planning process (see history FAQ below for more information). The survey will help the university to identify individual, unit-based, structural, cultural, and institutional factors that foster an inclusive campus climate. These factors will be analyzed so that they can be addressed through targeted interventions.
Who is conducting the actual survey?
The university has partnered with Gallup, a trusted, independent analytics consultant firm with decades of polling experience, to conduct the survey. Gallup will collect all data via Gallup Access—a dynamic survey design, data collection, and reporting platform. Gallup was selected as part of a competitive selection process, based on recommendations of the Climate Survey Vendor Selection Group.
What is the timeline?
This project includes six primary phases. The first involved investigating the need for a survey (winter/spring 2018), the survey development (summer/fall 2021/winter 2022), survey implementation that will seek input from all faculty, staff, and graduate employees (spring 2022), reporting of results (spring/summer/fall 2022), and action planning/implementation (summer/fall 2022/winter 2023).
Why are you conducting a survey now?
The university originally planned to conduct the climate survey in 2020 but the survey was paused due to the operational impacts during the onset of the pandemic. Coronavirus is likely to be with us for some time and the work of the university to foster inclusion and equity must continue. In addition, the pandemic is having differential impacts on members of our community, rendering the need to understand the workplace climate much more necessary and urgent. We appreciate the sacrifices that have been made by so many of our colleagues to help UO achieve its mission. We see the survey as an act of information gathering and caretaking for our community. We are looking forward to using the information that we gather from this survey as an opportunity to learn more about our community and to take actions in ways that improve it.
The Survey and You
Who can take the survey?
The survey is for all instructional and research faculty, officers of administration, classified employees, and graduate employees.
Why should I complete the survey?
Your voice and perspective matter. Completing the survey provides important and valuable information. While we often hear from individuals or groups in discrete ways, the survey will provide a broad and diverse sense of our entire community and will better inform us of what needs to be improved, changed, or created from a systematic framework. Each individual response is critical in helping us to understand our entire community and amplifies the collective voice of your respective employee group. Responses will help to provide us with accurate information and diverse voices to support change on an institutional, individual, interpersonal, and societal level.
How will I receive and take the survey?
You will be sent an email from Gallup with a link to the survey. You will be able to take the survey on any desktop or any mobile device or tablet during worktime. You can take the survey in English or Spanish.
What should I do if I didn't receive an email invitation to take the survey?
First check your Junk Email folder. Look the following subject line: “Invitation to Gallup’s 2022 IDEAL Climate Survey of University of Oregon Employees– RESPONSE REQUESTED”.
If you are still unable to locate it, scan this QR code using a cell phone camera, which will take you to the survey online. When it asks for your survey code, enter your UO #95 number.
How will my information be kept confidential?
To ensure the survey results are accurate and meaningful, the Gallup Organization conducts the employee engagement survey according to strict confidentiality policies. Here is how the process works: the UO provided Gallup with a list of its employees. Links are sent directly from Gallup to faculty, staff, and graduate employees. Gallup tracks individual information so that it can group results by unit or department area and demographic factors. But each individual’s responses are confidential. Only Gallup will know who participated and who did not participate. Gallup never shares respondent-level data back with the hiring organization. The responses of employees are anonymized prior to be being shared or reported to the university. At no point will anyone at the University of Oregon or an affiliate, including senior leaders, managers or supervisors, be privy to the origins of specific feedback. This confidentially will allow employees to provide honest feedback.
Will my supervisor or division leader see any of my comments?
No. Only Gallup will see the raw data and open-ended comments. All identifying information and individual names will be removed before open-ended comments are coded into broad themes that represent individual comments. The themes, rather than specific individual responses, will be presented in the survey results.
Do I have to share information about my race, nationality, sex, or other demographic information?
In order to track the effectiveness of efforts and ensure the needs of all our employees are considered, the survey will collect demographic data. Providing this information is voluntary. Individuals may select an option or self-describe. There is a ‘Decline to Answer’ option for all demographic questions.
Where can I go for more information or if I am having problems accessing the survey?
If you need assistance completing the survey, please contact Gallup:
- Live Chat support is available M-F, 8am – 6pm CST
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org for general support for urgent matters
- Call: 1-888-486-9104
Where can I go if I have a non-technical question or concern about the survey?
I think it’s important to have as many people as possible fill out this survey. How can I help encourage others to participate?
Talk with your colleagues and encourage them to fill out the survey and let them know why you have done so. Show them the website and information, including this FAQ, if they want to know more. Contact your department or division’s diversity committee and ask how you can be of assistance. You can also find resources n the HR website here.
Results and survey outcomes
How will the data be shared or reported?
A report on the findings will be published to this website. The results will also be shared in aggregate. When shared at the school, college, and divisions results will be shared in ways that ensure data confidentiality and anonymity.
For example, reports will not contain any group data that is so small that it could inadvertently identify one or more individuals and compromise confidentiality. Instead, the report would combine groups with very small numbers or take other measures to eliminate any potential for demographic information to be identifiable. Recognizing that combining groups would limit the way in which quantitative data about specific groups can be used, strategic efforts will be made to incorporate qualitative data to gain an accurate and nuanced understanding of experiences.
Is this a one-time climate survey?
The university will conduct another survey in approximately three to five years to assess our progress.
How will the results be used to improve the workplace climate?
President Michael H. Schill and university leaders have committed to using the results of the climate survey to plan and take action to address the issues the survey process identifies. The data collected in this study will be used in multiple ways including:
- A committee comprised of faculty, staff, and graduate employees will be appointed to help identify and recommend post-survey actions, timelines, and resources.
- Resources will be dedicated to fund campus-wide grants aimed at facilitating change, based on survey results.
- Survey results will be analyzed and used to create resources to support underrepresented communities and identify interventions focused on success and achievement.
- Survey results will be analyzed and used to update departmental and campus-wide policies.
- Resources will be devoted to supporting leaders and teams as they use the climate results to make necessary changes.
History of the survey
What is the history of the climate survey?
In 2017, as part of the university’s Inclusion, Diversity, Evaluation, Achievement, and Leadership (IDEAL) Framework and Diversity Action Planning, schools, colleges, and units identified the need to learn more about the campus climate. A Climate Survey Working Group was charged with assessing the feasibility of a campus-wide climate survey and identifying next steps toward implementation. After careful research and examination, they created a report and set of recommendations to conduct an employee campus survey. In fall 2019, President Michael H. Schill accepted the recommendations and launched the climate survey project, led by Vice President for Equity and Inclusion, Yvette Alex-Assensoh. Following a competitive RFP process, Gallup was selected to conduct the survey due to their experience, successful track record, and ability to help the campus conduct a confidential survey where individual results are anonymized before they are shared with the university.. Work paused on the survey planning during 2020 due to the operational disruptions from moving to remote instruction during the pandemic. As campus re-opened in fall 2021, the Campus Climate Survey and Implementation Team resumed its planning and implementation work. The climate survey name includes the word “IDEAL” to acknowledge its origin in campus diversity action planning.
How were the questions developed?
Gallup has administered climate assessments to hundreds of higher education, nonprofit, and for-profit institutions across the nation and developed a repository of tested questions. To assist in contextualizing the survey for the University of Oregon, Gallup and the Division of Equity and Inclusion invited stakeholders from diverse identity, employee classification, and academic disciplinary groups on campus to meet with Gallup and provide a sense of the broad themes that needed to be included in the survey.
In addition, Gallup also reviewed focus group data from 2017 interviews with women faculty of color and women in science and data from focus group sessions that Provost Patrick Phillips and VP Alex-Assensoh conducted with staff, faculty, and graduate students in 2019, 2020, and 2021 across campus to better understand how they were being impacted by racial uprising and COVID-19. Data from the focus groups was shared with Gallup to help shape the Gallup survey. The Climate Survey Steering Committee was also charged with providing input and guiding the survey development and implementation.