What is People Science?
Published Oct 05 2023 09:32 AM 3,621 Views

Hi, I'm Jaime Gonzales and I lead the Viva People Science R&D team. Our goal is to enrich the Viva journey with the science of employee happiness and success, to deliver exceptional and impactful experiences for humans at work. 


As People Science experts, we are consultants, researchers, analysts, content authors, product consultants, and customer advocates with deep expertise in engagement and employee experience. I've worked in HR and OD roles for many years and now love sitting in a product team where we have the scale and reach to improve the lives of millions of people at work.


What is People Science? 


I’ve always been fascinated with the idea that businesses win or lose based on the strength of their people. The better the connection between the two, the greater likelihood of success. As organizations seek any advantage to overcome strong economic headwinds, I think this notion is more important than ever. Those who prioritize what makes people feel happy, successful, and motivated to do their best work will find a competitive leg up. This is what People Science is all about – finding the intersection between people’s engagement and business performance. 


People Science: our definition at Microsoft Viva 


Let’s start with how we at Microsoft Viva think about People Science, and what it means for our customers. People Science is a research-backed and people-centric approach to the study and practice of happiness and success at work. It integrates fields of study like industrial-organizational psychology, organizational development, and occupational psychology with increasingly relevant fields like data science, product management, and design to reimagine an employee experience that drives better individual and organizational outcomes.  


How Viva People Science creates value 


Viva People Science transforms how people and organizations succeed by building new habits and mindsets. We help people bring their best selves to work so that they can do their best work. First, we invest in building a team of intellectually curious People Scientists who can transform themselves and their customers into People Science pros. We produce industry-leading research that challenges conventional HR practices, leveraging our unique data and expertise. We weave this research into our product and marketing outreach to design a human-centric Viva experience that improves employee engagement and ultimately business performance. As a team, we work to continuously evolve our skills, procedures, services, and toolkits to delight more and more customers and make People Science accessible to everyone. 


For customers, we offer professional services to deliver connected insights and enable change in three key ways: 


1. We help customers shape and get buy-in on a tailored strategy that measures and improves aspects of their employee experience most related to engagement and business performance.  

2. We help customers become People Science pros, elevating them in their roles and ensuring the partnership’s success.  

3. We alleviate customer pain points by infusing our product with deep user empathy and our experience as People Scientists. 


My colleagues and I will continue to explore the foundations of People Science with you over the coming months through this blog. But in the meantime, take a minute to watch this video that looks at People Science working with Viva Glint customers. I think it captures the essence of People Science at Microsoft. 


Interested in how Viva People Science can support your organization’s success? Learn more here. 


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