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Introduction to the Working at Iowa Survey 2012 – What and Why



An online presentation is available at:

More Detailed Information:



The survey is a tool for the University to work toward continuous improvement and excellence.  Working at IOWA (WAI) is a confidential survey asking faculty and staff how they feel about their work environment.  Survey results are used to support continuing improvement to the work environment and the engagement of faculty and staff to their work.

One of the strategies to achieve the University’s aspiration is through engaged faculty and staff who (1) feel valued, (2) are involved in decision making, (3) have their ideas heard and respected, (4) have opportunities to further their career and/or work-related responsibilities, and (5) believe their well-being is important. 

(More information at:  “Drivers of Employee Engagement”, D. Robinson, S. Perryman, and S. Hayday, IES Report 408, April 2004

What is engagement?

Employee engagement is a heightened emotional connection that an employee feels for his or her organization that results in greater discretionary effort on the part of the employee for his or her work.

Research shows that engagement occurs due to --

  • Trust and integrity – how well managers communicate and "walk the talk."
  • Nature of the job –Is it mentally stimulating day-to-day?
  • Line of sight between employee performance and organizational performance – Does the employee understand how their work contributes to the organization’s performance?
  • Career Growth opportunities –Are there future opportunities for growth?
  • Pride about the organization – How much self-esteem does the employee feel by being associated with their organization?
  • Coworkers/team members – significantly influence one's level of engagement
  • Employee development – Is the organization making an effort to develop the employee's skills?
  • Relationship with one's manager – Does the employee value his or her relationship with his or her manager?

For more information on employee engagement, review Purposeful Work, by Patricia Soldati, March 8, 2007.

Page last updated September 2012