Company XYZ wants its employees to stay motivated and engaged in the company’s operations. For this, the company regularly surveys its staff. But there are no far-reach results. Do you know what could be the reason? 

The reason is that the employees are being asked their opinions but there is no response or work to their requirements. Resultingly, they feel their feelings and solutions have been dismissed.  

Mere conducting surveys is not enough. The main aspect is to acknowledge the opinions of your workers. And then constitute policies and implement these accordingly. If your employees do not feel recognized, their performance will deteriorate. 

An organization must keep strict policies to bring all the possible changes mentioned by their staff in the survey. This helps boost their morale. Negligence on the part of the management may sometimes cause severe damage in the long run. 

A well-crafted and comprehensive survey must be followed by thorough strategic planning and actual changes. 

What is Employee Engagement? 

Gallup has released a 12-item survey — the Q12 – after researching employee engagement for over 30 years. These are the 12 employee needs that make up the items on Gallup’s engagement survey: 

  1. How satisfied are you with your company as a place to work? 
  2. I know what is expected of me at work. 
  3. I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right. 
  4. At work, I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day. 
  5. In the last seven days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work. 
  6. My supervisor, or someone at work, seems to care about me as a person. 
  7. There is someone at work who encourages my development. 
  8. At work, my opinions seem to count. 
  9. The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel my job is important. 
  10. My associates and fellow employees are committed to doing quality work. 
  11. I have a best friend at work. 
  12. In the last six months, someone at work has talked to me about my progress. 
  13. This last year, I have had opportunities at work to learn and grow. 

So, these are the basic questions upon which the management has to do all the strategic planning. If results are executed properly, your workers will give exceptional performance. But if you ignore the outcomes for one reason or another, employee engagement and business metrics suffer a lot. 

Best Practices for Employee Engagement Surveys 

Employee surveys are all about staff satisfaction, opinions, and performance issues. Here are 10 best practices to get valuable insights from your employee surveys: 

1. Properly Plan Surveys 

The success of any survey depends upon proper planning. You just can’t survey for the sake of it. Take your time to plan them out. 

Here are some factors to be considered to plan for: 

  • Why are you doing the survey? There must be a clear reason for it. For example, you want to compare the current and past trends. Or you want to have your staff’s opinion on a particular aspect. Or you want to study the reasons for low productivity. 
  • What’s the timeline for the survey? Timing for everything plays a crucial role. Study the timeframe for conducting the survey as well as gathering and validating responses. 
  • Who needs to answer the survey? Will the whole team participate or only the selected members will do the needful? 
  • What type of questions are to be used? Be careful while formulating a survey. Be specific. Avoid unnecessary questions. Be on point to maintain interest. 
  • Who will implement changes as per the survey results? Would it be the HR team or the management? 

2. Consider the Best Timing 

Time your survey well. To make it successful, it should not be conducted during public holidays or when your staff is busy. The best strategy is to schedule surveys at regular intervals so your employees are aware of it beforehand. This way, they would have more information and suggestions to share. 

Moreover, it is also feasible to conduct surveys at substantial events, like while onboarding or promotion, and during performance reviews, or offboarding. 

For best results, conduct surveys before and after this rearrangement as well. You will witness how perceptions and sentiments change during a major shift.  

3. Ask the Right Questions 

Wording the survey questions is much trickier than it appears. Be very careful in your query selection as each respondent is biased to some extent. So, be specific and try to be more objective. Some tips are given below: 

  • Use unbiased words. Avoid using words depicting gender discrimination. Some terms like ‘strong’ or ‘powerful’ may symbolize male association. So, it’s better to phrase your question by skipping such words. 
  • Focus on a single item in one question. Don’t use two interrelated terms in your query. For example, provident fund and leave benefits are both part of your compensation package. However, each employee may have different perspectives about the two. An employee might be satisfied with the provident fund but not necessarily with the leave benefits. So, treat them as separate elements. 
  • Rating scales and MCQs are the most convenient.These get the most engagement and respondents. Also, keep the flow in categories. Don’t jump from one topic to another. For instance, questions about leadership must be grouped while questions about job satisfaction must be categorized differently.

    Then comes open-ended questions. Such questions allow respondents to share their views and opinions more clearly and subjectively. 

  • Lastly, keep your surveys short. The more concise the questionnaire is, the more responses you get. 

4. Thorough Communication Plan 

These surveys are like a marketing plan in which the target audience is your staff. Without proper communication, surveys are of no use. Therefore, let them know the purpose of conducting this. Also, share the survey process as to how and when would it be conducted. 

Furthermore, use various platforms to announce and share the questionnaire. This might include e-mails, notifications via the employee app, or simply announcements by team leads. So that everyone realizes the importance of filling out the form.  

5. Use Data to Identify Critical Issues 

One of the best practices for implementing employee engagement surveys is to maximize your data using automation. For instance, there are several apps available in the market for time and attendance giving accurate data for insightful decision making. If your data shows an increase in absenteeism, you can frame your survey to find out the root cause. 

6. Involve Employees in Survey Design 

If you want your survey to be outclassed, select a small number of employees and do a test run. This will help identify any shortcomings. If there are any vague or ambiguous questions, these can be omitted. Additionally, if any point gets missed, it can be added. Thus, improving the quality of the survey and yielding better results. 

7. Report Confidentiality Concerns 

One of the most important concerns of a survey is confidentiality. Your employee won’t feel at home unless it is specifically mentioned that the document is confidential and the name of the respondent would not be disclosed in any case.  

Moreover, your staff would also be urged to give more honest replies if the questionnaire has a confidentiality clause.  

8. Authenticate your Results 

Sometimes surveys do not produce true results. It is recommended to validate your findings. Correlate answers with other relevant data like sales metrics, ROI, or yield.  

A survey shows optimistic findings, but this might not be the case. For example, a team may rate their manager quite well. The actual reason is that the manager never holds staff accountable for productivity or workplace professionalism, resulting in a bias of staff for the manager. 

So, in case of any ambiguity, conduct a follow-up study. A focused discussion among a small group of employees can provide a clearer picture of the situation.  

9. Follow-up 

There is no point in conducting surveys if you don’t announce the results to your staff. The basic aim of a survey is employee engagement, right? So, what’s the point if they are not informed of the findings and the actions to be taken on the results? 

The unique element of successful organizations is how they utilize survey results to optimize their staff management and improve their work environment. 

A higher level of transparency makes employees feel heard and ensures suitable action is taken. 

10. Use the Right Survey Tools 

Make your surveys easily accessible to all. Distributing surveys through convenient channels is crucial for a good survey response rate. This also keeps things as simple as possible. If you do not choose a better platform, employees won’t be willing to answer as they are busy with their tasks. And filling out surveys is never so important for them. 

Final Words 

Now that we have discussed many of the best practices used for employee engagement surveys, it would be easy for you to conduct one successfully. 

The main thing is to plan and conduct all the processes strategically. Only then you would be able to get the best results cultivate a positive work culture and maximize employee satisfaction.  

Through these insights, organizations can ensure that their surveys are effective tools for gathering data on staff opinions, attitudes, and experiences.  

Hence, investing time in well-executed employee engagement surveys demonstrates a genuine commitment to listening to your staff’s voices, generating open communication, and driving continuous improvement within the organization.