Survey shows Minneapolis city workers feel overburdened

A recent survey of 2,560 Minneapolis city employees shows that more than half of the city’s workers feel they don’t have enough people to do the city’s business. 

Kenexa, a human resources firm, conducted the Employee Engagement Survey last fall. The survey was sent to 3,894 employees, with 66 percent taking part.

Only 33 percent of workers feel the city has an adequate number of employees, compared to 40 percent in 2009. Just 34 percent say city leadership shows concern for the well-being and morale of employees, down slightly from 36 percent in 2009.

The city has reduced its workforce by 12 percent since 2008 and has used layoffs over the past several months to keep property taxes flat.

Overall employee satisfaction has declined from 66 percent in 2006 to 54 percent in 2011. Survey takers also expressed concern with their department leadership. In the past year, four department heads have either retired or took different jobs, including the fire chief, chief financial officer, regulatory leader and the city coordinator.

The survey also showed several positive trends in the city’s ranks. At least 72 percent of employees gave high marks for the city’s benefits plan, its attention to safety and for its health and wellness programs. In all those categories, the city improved from 2009.

Kenexa identified 10 areas for the city to pay attention to because of their poor survey scores. Among those was addressing employees and their concern for their career outlook. Only 42 percent said they are satisfied with their career development and only 39 percent say they have a promising future at the city.

The survey is meant to gather employee insights about what is working well and where the city can improve. 

Kenexa and Minneapolis human resources staff will present the survey findings to the City Council tomorrow at the Council’s Committee of the Whole meeting.