The self-assessment tool focuses on common high performance workplace principles rather than specific practices. This approach is consistent with the research evidence base which supports the absence of a single set of high performing work practices that are appropriate and effective across organisations. Instead, our approach recognises  that there are a number of core high performing work practices which can be added to other practices specific to the organisation to form a unique HR bundle to apply for improved people management.

The survey comprises around 80 questions organised into nine key categories. Questions were selected following a thorough review of both academic and practitioner literature. Eight of the categories relate to people management; more specifically principles/objectives associated with high performance work systems. These categories are as follows:

  • Involvement
  • Communication
  • Performance
  • Ability and skills
  • Leadership
  • Team working
  • Employee development
  • Job flexibility

The ninth category relates to broad practices often associated with a differentiated business strategy including topics such as:

  • Innovation
  • Technology
  • Market choices 
  • Workplace efficiency measures.

Each category and sub-category (where appropriate) is given a total index score out of 100. Based upon theoretical considerations and supported by results from real world organisations (typically the featured case studies), we have applied a "traffic light" system to help interpret the scores:

  Scores below 51 are considered to be low (denoted by a red traffic light).

  Scores of 51 to 79 are considered to be medium (denoted by a yellow traffic light).

  Scores of 80 and over are considered to be high (denoted  by a green traffic light).

Higher scores indicate agreement with high performance workplace principles.

The average scores of known high performing South Australian organisations (initially the case study companies) are presented along with a company's results to provide a contextual benchmark.

Note - the cut-off point for each result category (i.e. traffic light system) is under review as some stakeholders suggest it is too lenient. Similarly, the average scores for known 'high performing South Australian companies' is regularly updated. For more information about any of these methodological aspects please contact us.



Flinders University, Australian Industrial Transformation Institute (AITI)