Net Promoter for employees

The Net Promoter System is a management philosophy that commits to earning the passionate loyalty of both clients and employees. 

Employees, of course, are critical to the success of all organisations, but in professional services this is doubly true, because in this industry your people are your product. 

People NPS is sometimes known as employee NPS or, simply, eNPS.  

One simple question

To identify the People NPS for your firm ask your people one question:

On a scale of 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend your firm to friends and family as a great place to work?

You follow up this question, with the open ended question – why?

The goal of is to sort employees into categories that provide a picture of loyalty and engagement. Like Client NPS, People NPS involves the same three categories.

Promoters are your employee advocates, who enthusiastically agree that your firm is a great place to work. They refer potential employment candidates and are typically highly engaged and motivated (scores of 9 or 10 are considered promoters). 

Detractors, on the other hand, are generally dissatisfied and can damage your brand in a number of ways (scores of 6 or below are considered detractors). 

Neutrals are satisfied but unenthusiastic advocates (scores of 7 or 8 are considered neutrals).

Subtracting the percentage of detractors from the percentage of promoters produces a People NPS. A positive score indicates that you have more promoters than detractors – and, on balance, an engaged workforce, whereas a negative score indicates the reverse. 


Research has shown that People NPS is an accurate measure of employee engagement (learn more). However, since it is only one simple question, easily asked and answered, it can be more regularly used as an effective pulse or check-in survey across the year. Typically, our clients run a People NPS survey once a quarter, in addition to running a longer annual survey.  

Testing initiatives

A clear benefit of running regular People NPS surveys is the ability to track a simple metric to show progress on employee engagement throughout the year.

This enables organisations to check the success of HR initiatives without having to wait until the results of the next annual survey.  

Of course, a key benefit comes not from the score but from the verbatim remarks that employees make. Importantly, these are top of mind remarks. They are not responses to long lists of questions on various themes. The themes the employees identify in People NPS surveys are the ones that are most important to them. So any verbatim comments are worth taking very seriously. 

Greg Tilse