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To mark International Week of Happiness at Work, we want to tell you about Officevibe and the reasons we vibe with it. (I don’t think we’re famous enough to say this but… this is not an ad!).

We started using Officevibe in June. Total transparency — we were a bit sceptical. It looked and sounded great, but how many times have you signed up to an online tool just to end up never using it? Well let me tell you, four months in, and we still use it all the bloody time.

The purpose of Officevibe is to bring out the best in your team. It’s:

“A single platform to engage with your team members and cultivate trust. Tackle challenges and build strengths so your team can do its best work.” – Officevibe

It serves two main purposes;

  • Conducting anonymous speed surveys and requesting regular feedback
  • Building one-on-one meeting agendas between managers and team members and setting/tracking goals

The one-on-one planning is self explanatory — if you’re used to one-on-ones, you know the drill. We just love the interface; it’s simple to use and makes communication between managers and team members effortless. It’s digital, it’s all in one place, and you can refer back to it easily. Happy days.

But it’s the surveys and feedback features that have really, truly allowed us to improve happiness and wellbeing in the studio. Every week, team members receive a 2-minute survey in their inbox to complete anonymously. Most of the time, the questions are automatically generated by Officevibe (although there is an option to customise). Based on the answers and any additional feedback, it identifies areas in which we’re killing it, and the areas in need of improvement. Managers can review overall scores, reply to feedback, track progress, and implement change accordingly, and team members can have their voice heard regularly.

It’s stupidly easy to complete but infinitely valuable. Here are our top reasons why:

1. We can spot issues early and tackle them quickly

Not only can we be reactive when morale seems low, but we can support people as and when they are experiencing a problem. When feedback sessions are few and far between, it’s easy to sit on your sadness or stress and think, “I’ll bring it up in my next one-on-one”. But what if that one-on-one is weeks away? Officevibe allows you to spot issues early before they start taking a toll on individual and team wellbeing. The earlier we can solve an issue or provide support, the happier we become.

2. Team members can answer anonymously

The anonymity feature is central to the success of Officevibe at designdough. I realise there are mixed opinions on this online, but anonymity is a really positive thing. Instead of asking ‘but why wouldn’t my team feel comfortable coming to me with honest feedback?’, we say, ‘why should they?’. Showing vulnerability and addressing work problems can be difficult. Feeling awkward about this kind of stuff is normal. To be open, honest, and constructive, we need to feel like there is an open forum where you don’t have to attach your name to an opinion. Positive or negative. Of course, we still encourage face-to-face conversations, but giving feedback that doesn’t necessarily have to be ‘Emily’s feedback’ is quite freeing.

3. We have conversations that might not happen otherwise

Officevibe says it ‘makes space for real talk’. And to that we say — yep! It’s not the same old stuff week on week, but quick-fire, sometimes thought-provoking questions that cover a wide range of topics. And you don’t have to do anything to make it happen — the right questions are automatically asked for you. The Officevibe system does an amazing job at knowing what to ask when based on previous answers and team feedback. God bless the algorithm and third party programmes. Having Officevibe do the work means the whole team can be honest without worrying about agendas.

4. Everyone has a voice

Officevibe creates a level playing field where anyone can bring anything to the table. You don’t have to wait for the survey to hit your inbox either — you can login whenever you want to submit anonymous (or personalised) feedback. When managers ask for feedback out loud, some people are happy to speak up on the spot. That’s great, but other people might prefer to think about it or write it down. Giving everyone the opportunity to submit feedback ensures that everyone gets their say. Feedback is inclusive and much, much richer.

5. We can set goals and monitor them TOGETHER

Hands up if you’ve ever set individual goals only to never, ever refer back to them. Even if they’re goals you’ve reached — they just get lost in an old work notebook. Well, no more. I’m not going to convince you that goal setting is a sexy task, but when it’s an easy task that you can actually keep track of, life is way easier. The most important thing for us is that you can track them online together. Both managers and team members have access to them and the onus is on both to make sure progress is being made. Setting and hitting goals is a joint effort and you can’t beat that sense of togetherness at work.

6. It’s easy to adopt as a business

Not much to say here other than, it’s a piece of cake to implement. Creating an account is simple, one-on-ones are easy to set up, and staff surveys only take a few minutes to complete. Even the data and score sheets are easy to follow. It’s not exhausting at all and, actually, we kind of enjoy doing it!

7. Seeing improvement is lush

It’s always nice to look back at where you were and then how far you’ve come. Sometimes it’s hard to keep track of people’s general happiness or progression (hey working from home!) — you tend to remember the really good times or the really bad. Officevibe gives us the opportunity to track incremental improvements we’ve made to the business, from overall welfare to individual progress and happiness. It’s lush to see!

To conclude…

Let’s be real. Morale can dip, especially amidst a pandemic. But you can get things back on track quickly. It requires a diehard commitment to happiness, but things like Officevibe make that easy. It gives you the tools to include, respect, and listen to your team. It’s not something to catch you out — it’s an aid and opportunity to create a healthy and happy workplace.

So, Officevibe (we doubt you’re reading this but on the off chance you are) — we bow down to you.

And managers everywhere — take the Officevibe quiz to find out what’s holding your team back, and what you should prioritise in order to enhance happiness at work.