Engage: How do you manage anonymity?

This article is for customers utilizing Betterworks Engage Product

How do you manage anonymity?

Betterworks Engage works with companies globally to ensure anonymity by controlling data visibility while allowing for segmentation and trending. A unique identifier is assigned to each response, and all data is hidden until each segment meets the 'anonymity threshold'. The 'anonymity threshold' ensures that no-one in the organization is able to drill-down to individual results  or alter data in a way that removes respondent anonymity. This gives participants complete anonymity in their responses and ensures that their responses cannot be tied to their identity.

Betterworks Engage sends unique, encrypted survey invites to ensure employees can respond once and only once. Betterworks guarantees anonymity to more the 150,000 employees around the world. In reporting, no individual results are ever attached to a name or identity as the reports are always aggregated and anonymized.

Anonymity thresholds are in place throughout reporting to ensure that no respondent’s anonymity is compromised due to small segment sizes or low participation.

Total Respondents

There will need to be a minimum of 5 respondents within a viewable segment for data to be displayed. If there are fewer than 5 respondents, the user will instead see a message stating “Data cannot be displayed to ensure anonymity.” Admin users can change the minimum number of respondents required within their company settings, but the number can never be lower than 5.

Segment Level

In addition to placing a minimum on the number of respondents for a segment to be viewable, thresholds will also need to be implemented based on the number of people within certain segments in order to prevent users from deducing which segment within a dimension comprises the responses.

If there are any segments within a dimension that are below the anonymity threshold, segments will be hidden starting with the smallest segments until the total number of respondents hidden is greater than the anonymity threshold.

Example #1

Customer Service Team by Gender

Female: 13

Male: 1

If the anonymity threshold is 5, both segments would be hidden because hiding the Male (1) segment would only bring the total number of hidden respondents to 1.

Example #2

Customer Service Team by Gender

Female: 20

Male: 5

If the anonymity threshold is 5, both segments would be hidden because hiding the Male (5) segment would only bring the total number of hidden respondents to 5, and the number must exceed the anonymity threshold.

Example #3

Customer Service Team by Gender

Female: 20

Male: 6

If the anonymity threshold is 5, no segments would be hidden because both segments exceed the anonymity threshold.

Example #4

Company Grouped by Location

New York: 45

San Francisco: 20

Boston: 15

Raleigh: 7

Miami: 2

If the anonymity threshold is 5, both Miami (2) and Raleigh (7) would be hidden in order to bring the total number of hidden respondents above the anonymity threshold.