04.08.19

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The EPO’s Incredulous Survey: Management’s Voice, Management’s Future — EPO Staff ‘Engagement’ Spin (Denial of Issues)

Posted in Europe, Patents at 11:53 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Pure spin and distortion by Willis Towers Watson (that’s their job), such as the ‘outline’ below. It merely insults the intelligence of staff while calling it “your voice”.

Willis Towers Watson spin

Summary: The EPO lies to its staff and will soon lie to the public, too; In this Battistelli-styled stunt it’s constructing an alternate reality while trying to pass it off as ‘scientific’ (like oil companies funding ‘research’ to refute climate science)

YESTERDAY morning we wrote about the new survey, which was managed by European Patent Office’s (EPO) management. It was overseen by the deniers looking to cover up their misdeeds and incompetence. Willis Towers Watson offers spin as a ‘service’ (or ‘product’), so why not ‘pull a Battistelli’ (PwC) and waste some more EPO budget on PR disguised as ‘survey’ or ‘study’? Why not spin mismanagement and misconduct as success and promise? It’s all about controlling the narrative while making it seem like a reflection of reality (based on, e.g., the number of people surveyed).

We asked/called for insiders to ‘leak’ it to us, so some quickly did. The EPO should be accountable to the public, not to itself. We need this in the public domain in order for the public to be able to assess the EPO’s “sound bites” and see if they match what the contracted firm has found (which may not be accurate either because of the EPO’s money tainting objectivity). We also need to know what questions were asked, i.e. the methods. We doubt the EPO wishes to disclose all these ‘gory’ details. Unlike SUEPO-funded surveys, this one was conducted with the purpose of making António Campinos look good — a fact one must bear in mind. At the bottom we include the three PDF documents associated with the “sound bites”, which the EPO will soon use for propaganda purposes (it already does so internally). Here, below, is the enclosing message.


The Office-wide results are out!

Have a look at the

  • infographic which provides an executive summary or
  • browse through the presentation deck that WTW presented
  • further details in the annex to the presentation.

The President shared his view on the results in his communiqué here.

Following the Office-wide results release, the DGs will hold workshops for their management teams, delving further into these results. After these presentation workshops, all team managers will receive their unit results and organise workshops with their teams.

Final DG participation rates

Complete Invitees Return Rate
DG0 93 113 82%
DG1 4434 5204 85%
DG4 752 847 89%
DG5 217 253 86%
BoA 179 228 79%
Total 5675 6645 85%

About sustainable staff engagement

engaged

Engaged + Enabled + Energised = Happier colleagues, users and customers.

Sustainable Staff Engagement Engaged Enabled Energised
What it means To believe in where we’re going and be proud to work at the EPO To have the tools and opportunities to do good work To have a workplace that supports healthy and inspirational ways of working
What it measures /analyses Rational, emotional and behavioural attachment to the company In how far does the local work environment support productivity and performance Individual physical, interpersonal and emotional well-being at work

About Willis Towers Watson

Willis Towers Watson, an international expert survey provider, will help the Office set up a scientific way to measure the dimensions Engagement, Enablement and Energisation. In an open tender process, WTW put forward a solid proposal that convinced the award committee composed of management and staff representatives. Moreover, WTW will assist in ensuring the survey results will lead to actions. The company will administer the survey to guarantee full confidentiality of data.

About the survey

The survey is quick, easy and open to all EPO employees, who have been at the Office for more than 4 months. Anyone having started at the Office after 1 October 2018 (cut-off date) is still in the process of getting to know their new work place and will hence receive no invitation.

On 31 January 2019, you received an e-mail from our external survey provider Willis Towers Watson to participate in the survey. The survey has 55 questions and is as such shorter than previous surveys, to provide actionable and strategic insights. Key areas identified can be followed up in topic-specific Pulse surveys.

The survey is divided into three sections:

  1. About you section: 3 questions on demographics (This information will be used to construct meaningful analysis only; please rest assured that information will not be used to identify respondents cf confidentiality information)
  2. General opinion sections: 55+ multiple choice questions
  3. Open comments sections: 2+ open ended questions that will ask you to share your suggestions and opinions for the Office’s future. – Please note, comments will be reported as written. Please do not insert information like your name etc if you wish to remain anonymous.

High-level topics in the survey include: Sustainable Engagement, Communication, Management, Line Management, Service Focus, Working Effectiveness & Quality, Empowerment, Training & Talent Development, Remuneration, Diversity & Inclusion, External Reputation and Well-Being.

It was possible to complete the survey on your computer, mobile phone or tablet, at work or at home and in any of the three Office-languages.

Any management team with 8 or more responses will receive a unit specific report of the findings, which can help the manager identify strengths and areas for positive action.

Reporting examples

How are the 8 responses / 20 comments cut-off rules applied?

org

  • In this example scenario the following reports would be generated:
  • Team manager A will receive an unit report if 8 or more people in his team fill in the survey
  • Team manager B could receive an unit report if all of his staff fill in the survey, if only 7 or fewer people submit their results, all results from Team B would be rolled up to the next level (i.e. the All Directorate Employees report)
  • Team manager C will not receive a specific unit report, as the number of team responses is under the confidentiality protection cut-off of 8 people. Their results will be rolled up to the next level and will feature in the All Directorate Employees report.
  • The Director will receive a report of his management team (Direct Reports), which includes the responses from Team Managers A-C and his Assistants / Advisors, if all 8 fill in the survey. If fewer submit their responses, their results will be rolled up to the Directorate’s all employees report.
  • The Director will receive a report for all members of his directorate; this includes his management teams, advisors, assistants and all team members of A,B,C. This report is furthermore available to the Principal Director.
  • Open comments: The cut-off rule for open comments is 20 to protect respondent’s confidentiality. In this example, the Director may receive an open comments report, if more than 20 of the people in his directorate have filled in the survey. If fewer people provide comments, say 14 people, comments from the entire directorate will be rolled up to the Principal Director and feature in their report of comments of all Directorates in his line.
  • All responses will furthermore feature in the All PD employees report, in the All COO employees report and the All DG employees report and the All EPO employees report.

Survey timeline

Milestones Date
Willis Towers Watson to analyse survey results March
Office-wide results presentation by Willis Towers Watson

  • To MAC
03 April
  • To all managers (SIM)
Morning of 04 April
  • To CSC
Morning of 04 April
  • To staff (cross-site VICO)
Afternoon of 04 April
Video guide “Working with your results” available to managers As of 04 April
DG-specific results presentations by WTW 10-15 April
  • DG0
11 April
  • DG1
12 April
  • DG4
10 April
  • DG5
15 April
  • BoA
12 April
Unit reports available to managers 10-15 April
Start of unit results discussions

Your manager should reach out to you about these soon

Starting from 10 April

Contact

For questions, you can visit our FAQ section (blue box linked above), or reach out to the project team on staffsurvey@epo.org or your DG representative!


 

PDF files:

  1. EPO-Survey Results Infographics_nometadata
  2. EPO Office-wide results presentation 4 April_nometadata
  3. EPO overall results presentation_Annex_nometadata
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