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Keeping the lines open

HERO facilitates manager, employee talks

The Next Level Connection program, now available through HERO, allows managers and supervisors to have regular conversations with employees about their engagement.

The Postal Service is making it easier for managers and supervisors to keep the lines of communication open with employees who report to them.

Through the Next Level Connection program, managers and supervisors are encouraged to have regular conversations with employees about their engagement, including the 12 areas measured by the Postal Pulse employee survey. These topics include whether employees know what is expected of them and whether they have the tools needed to perform their work.

To ensure more managers and supervisors conduct these conversations, the Postal Service has added a Next Level Connection feature to the HERO learning portal.

Managers and supervisors can use the feature to document each Next Level Connection conversation. The feature will also allow managers and supervisors to track and schedule the conversations, which should occur every three months at a minimum.

“Next Level Connection conversations are critically important to every employee’s progress and professional development,” said Kelvin Williams, the Postal Service’s employee engagement executive director. “When managers and supervisors conduct these conversations with their direct reports, they can gauge how USPS is meeting the employee’s needs and opportunities for improvement. And now, thanks to this new feature on the HERO portal, the process is that much easier.”

The Next Level Connection program, which USPS introduced in 2018, is part of the organization’s broader efforts to boost engagement, which refers to employees’ overall approach to their work, including their involvement, enthusiasm and commitment.

The Postal Service has made engagement a core strategy because research shows that employees who feel engaged deliver better customer service, have better attendance rates and work safer.

For more information on the Next Level Connection form in HERO or how to access it, refer to the Next Level Connection Quick Reference Guide.

The Employee Engagement Blue page has more information about the program.

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