Employee Retention Through Open Feedback: CYLAD Consulting Manages Surveys With Surwayne

Image: NONWARIT/Shutterstock.com
Image: NONWARIT/Shutterstock.com

When Steffen Petersen and his 15 colleagues from his Hamburg office go to work on Monday mornings, their journeys usually take them to different directions – to Helsinki, Zurich or Chicago. Petersen is a management consultant and partner at CYLAD Consulting, a strategy and management consulting firm specialised in high-tech industries that has been active in global markets for more than ten years. For management consultants like Petersen, traveling is part of daily business. He and his consultant colleagues are often on the road five days a week. However, this close-to-the-customer work ethic also poses a challenge to the consulting sector.

The Challenge of Day-To-Day Business: Working With Customers Dominates

“It’s a two-edged sword: As consultants, it’s standard practice for us to spend most of our time on-site with our customers – right in the middle of the action,” says Steffen Petersen. “At the same time, the spatial separation is a big hurdle when exchanging ideas and experiences within our company on a regular basis.” Petersen is hinting at a challenge that is part of the consulting business. Day-to-day business usually dominates and the exchange among colleagues falls often behind.


Management Consultant Dr. Steffen Petersen: “With Surwayne, we can easily carry out a regular pulse check: What is the mood? What do we need to work on?“

Image: CYLAD Consulting

Petersen has a different vision for CYLAD Consulting and its employees and has therefore introduced a feedback process that is managed with Surwayne’s Team Engagement solution. “A dedicated team is a critical competitive factor for us. Dedicated means: Our employees are fully committed to our customers and the joint project success. To make this possible, we as management must understand the support our employees need in order to do so,” Petersen explains.


Developing a Sense of Belonging, Increasing Employee Retention

Through regular surveys and transparent feedback processes, management consulting firms like CYLAD Consulting foster a sense of belonging. Like any modern organisation, consulting firms want to develop their own culture and establish an identity that is meaningful and engaging to employees. Engagement in turn promotes commitment, and points to the heart of the problem for consulting firms of all sizes and specialisations: employee retention. Indeed, this is a challenge for management consulting firms. Based on the total number of employees, the industry average suggests that consultants are leaving their employers at a double-digit rate. The consultants’ commitment to their customers is often so strong that they are offered direct entry. Specialised premium providers such as CYLAD invest heavily in the know-how of their employees. If a colleague leaves the team, valuable knowhow gets often lost, too.

CYLAD Consulting has been exempt from this trend so far. “Employee retention is a top priority for us,” says Petersen. “We make 80 percent of our business with customers who regularly hire us. We focus on continuity in our customer relationships and also need this stability with our employees. But for that to work, we always have to know what’s on our colleagues’ minds, where there’s room for improvement, what new ideas there are. With Surwayne, we can easily carry out a regular pulse check: What is the mood? What do we need to work on?”


Employee Surveys in Just a Few Clicks With the Help of Surwayne

Surwayne combines all the key functions for team engagement and feedback management in a complete solution. Employee surveys at CYLAD Consulting and the processing of collected feedback are initially automated. Critical feedback will be further explored in personal discussions. Petersen: “During the implementation, we worked with Surwayne on a concept – which questions we had to ask to minimise the effort involved and increase the informative value of our colleagues’ feedback.”

Surwayne sends out the questionnaire, and CYLAD employees enter their feedback and new ideas on their smartphone or computer within minutes. For larger surveys, Surwayne recently introduced QR codes, which can be displayed in meeting rooms, for example. The feedback is gathered in the Dashboard, where the executive team sees the aggregated data at a glance. Surwayne suggests optimisation measures that either come from a best-practice catalog or were created beforehand. Through recurring surveys, the management team keeps an eye on whether the selected measures have contributed to the improvement of the survey results and ultimately to employee retention.


Summary: For management consulting firms like CYLAD, working on-site with the customer is part of their business model. But the strain of constant travel and the competition for talent are turning employee retention into a new challenge. CYLAD relies on a transparent feedback process, which the consulting firm manages through Surwayne. In just a few clicks, employees share their feedback and new ideas with the management team, which immediately knows what problems need to be addressed and can take appropriate action. This strengthens motivation and increases employee retention. Request a free live demo of Surwayne today!

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Jasmin Daneschumand

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Jasmin Daneschumandjasmin@surwayne.com

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