Workplace mentoring programs have been seen as a good way to improve employee morale, reduce turnover, attract talented candidates and help employees advance their skills. Yet, it is important to track and evaluate your mentoring program to be sure that it is having the desired effect in the workplace. There are many ways that you can use to follow the progress of your workplace mentoring program including participant feedback, mentoring software tracking and review of desired results.
Define Your KPIs
Identifying ways that you will measure the mentoring program success is an important part of the setup process. However, even if you did not determine what methods you would use to track your mentoring program when it first began it is not too late to start. The first part is to identify what are the organization’s desired results? These are the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). What does the company hope to see happen as a result of the mentoring program? This can be cutting down turnover, boosting employee skillsets and knowledge or anything in-between. Once you know what results you want to measure it will become clear what data you need to collect. For example, if your organization wants to reduce the turnover rate you can look back and see how many employees left their job in the previous six to 12 months. Then track how many leave through the duration of the mentoring program. When performing this data gathering if is important to have at least two groups:
- Those who participate in the mentoring program
- Those who do not participate in the mentoring program
If you see a drop in the number of employees leaving your organization, by monitoring whether or not they participated in the mentoring program will give you an idea of whether the program has been successful on that front. Other data you may want to keep a record of include productivity rates for the organization, sales numbers and profits. It may also be helpful to conduct an evaluation of employee engagement before, during and after the mentoring program. This can be done a number of ways including an employee survey or interview. If any of these KPIs improve, you can then investigate if the employees who saw the highest level of improvement also participated in the mentoring program. This would be a good indication that the workplace mentoring program had something to do with it.
Another key way to see if the mentoring program has been successful is to collect participant feedback and goal information. If mentors and mentees are providing positive feedback that is a good sign that the program is meeting its goals. This can be done in a number of ways, depending on your organization. Privacy may be a concern for participants so you may want to set up an online survey to solicit honest answers. However, if privacy is not an issue, simply sending mentors and mentees evaluation forms to fill out can also give your organization an idea about the success of the program. As well, tracking whether a mentee is achieving the goals that they set out at the beginning of the mentorship is another way to determine the success of the program. This is why setting out SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely) is important. If the mentor-mentee pair start off their relationship by defining a few of these goals it will be easier to evaluate the productivity of the mentorship.
Simplify the Review Process
While data collection can be a time-consuming process, it doesn’t need to be. Mentoring software can help you track the progress of your workplace mentoring program. By keeping digital records including the meeting schedule of the program participants, workplace mentoring program managers will be able to quickly evaluate the progress of the program. Mentoring software is also capable of generating reports on the progress of the mentorship program. This can help organization leadership and stakeholders quickly access the information they need to see how successful the mentoring program has been. It can also reveal areas in the mentoring program that need improvement.
What to do with the review results
Tracking the progress and success of a workplace mentoring program may mean that you identify areas that need improving. If you find that your mentoring program has not achieved a high level of KPI success, it does not mean the mentoring will not work for your organization. It is more likely that the program needs to be adjusted slightly so that you can get the results that you are looking for.
Reports and analytics from mentoring software is one of the best ways that you can identify these problem areas. Are the mentor and mentee not scheduling regular meetings? Is there a problem in identifying and reach goals for the mentee? How many employees are participating in the mentoring program? There can be any number of issues that need to be tweaked in a workplace mentoring program, no matter what organization you are with.
Before you give up on a mentoring program for your workplace, consider what areas may need to be improved or adjusted. With information from software like Together, it can take the guesswork out of the process and help you focus on making your workplace mentoring program a success.