I've Received a Pulse Survey: Now What?

SET Project Team - 24 September 2020

In the coming months, you might see a pulse survey from our Service Excellence Transformation (SET) team hit your inbox. Maybe you’ve received one already. As the administrative and academic restructuring components of U of A for Tomorrow continues to move along quickly, these surveys are one way for us to communicate with, engage, and respond to the U of A community as much as possible within a tight timeframe. 

Whether or not you’ve received a pulse survey, here are a few key things to know:

What is a pulse survey? 

Pulse surveys are literally a chance for us to take the pulse of the university community. They’re opportunities for quick check-ins: do staff and faculty have the information they need? Are their voices being heard?

A short set of questions is sent out each month to a random selection of 700 U of A employees. These surveys should take 5-10 minutes to complete, and they’re both anonymous and confidential (the responses will only be shared as aggregated data). If you receive one, please share your honest feedback—you’ll have a week to do so once the survey hits your inbox. 

What results are we getting?

The feedback from our August pulse survey is encouraging, and points us towards areas where we can be doing more. Here’s a quick look at the results: 

august-pulse-survey-results.png

Pulse survey results for August 2020 (n=255)

In addition, those who take the survey can provide more general feedback in two short-answer questions. Here are some of the most common things we heard:

  • General support for the UAT vision, and comments on the direction that respondents would like to see moving forward 
  • The need for clear and transparent communication and information sharing
  • The need to increase engagement with stakeholders
  • The impact of job insecurity and the associated stress, including anxieties about increased workload
  • The need to ensure a focus on EDI and inclusion throughout the whole program
  • Ideas for changes and improvements to elements of UAT, including opportunities to increase the success of academic restructuring and SET 

This feedback is indispensable, and to everyone who took time to complete the survey: thank you. We have already made two changes as a direct result of your input: (1) we have started weekly communication updates on the UAT website to keep our community better informed; and (2) we are incorporating more opportunities for staff engagement into our timeline, such as the upcoming town halls on September 30 (Academic Restructuring) and October 6 (SET)

What if I don’t get a survey?

Pulse surveys are not the only means of sharing feedback. Even if you don’t receive a survey, there are several other ways for you to get engaged: 

  • Attend the two upcoming town halls on September 30 (focused on Academic Restructuring) and October 6 (focused on SET) 
  • Participate in upcoming Thoughtexchange forums 
  • Use the UAT feedback form to share input 
  • Submit your questions by email to uat@ualberta.ca 

Whatever method you choose, we encourage you to share your questions and insights—we want to hear from you. 


The SET Project Team is responsible for leading administrative restructuring at the U of A—one of two branches of University of Alberta for Tomorrow. You can learn more about their work here.