When it comes to assessing employee engagement, there is little dispute over whether surveys are valuable in measuring employee satisfaction levels. Where experts disagree is in their frequency, length, and the role they play in an organization’s overall engagement strategy.
The main reason for conducting an employee engagement survey is to determine the factors that drive employees to perform their best and identify the ones that hinder performance. Accomplishing this can take several forms.
Traditional Employee Surveys
The traditional employee engagement survey is typically administered annually. Employees are presented with a comprehensive questionnaire to determine how content they are with their workload, work conditions, manager, peers, and compensation package. They are designed to collect a lot of data from the entire population of the organization at once.
While these types of survey are commonplace, their popularity is declining. Gartner reports that “In 2019, 74% of organizations will use formal, large-scale surveys. Down from 89% in 2015.”
More and more organizations are adopting another type of assessment—pulse surveys. According to the same Gartner study, “64% of organizations are using small-scale pulse surveys and one-off, topic-specific surveys.”
Pulse surveys are shorter, typically 10-15 questions, and administered more frequently. Their name comes from their purpose – to check in on the health of the culture or a specific project, initiative, or team. Many times, pulse surveys are used as a strategic complement to the traditional survey and a way to track progress of existing employee engagement initiatives.
Maximize Your Efforts
Regardless of the format you use, for surveys to be successful you need maximum participation and honest answers. Here are a few ways to encourage it:
Make your employee surveys easy
The last thing you want is to make the survey feel like a burden or another task your employees must add to their to-do lists.
Give your team advance notice and adequate time to complete it without pressure.
Questions should be clear and straightforward.
Utilizing software with survey functionality makes deploying surveys to your team easy for them and you.
Make it worthwhile
Explain why making time to fill out the survey will be beneficial—by guiding future efforts to improve their work life.
You don’t need to promise something tangible to encourage participation, but it can’t hurt.
If your software has gamification features, filling out the survey could help them earn points to achieve a reward, like a gift card.
Keep it anonymous
By keeping the survey anonymous, employees are more likely to be forthcoming with information without worry of retribution.
It can also encourage less confident team members to speak up. Remember to avoid any questions that may reveal their tenure or position within the company.
Act on the results
Employees will not feel compelled to respond honestly if they don’t feel their responses will impact change.
Demonstrate that their opinions matter by acting upon the information obtained. Sharing the results, even if it’s just an overview, builds trust and transparency.
With the right software, providing this information in an easy-to read format is simple.
Need help designing a survey or with employee engagement in general?
We can help. Schedule a consultation with one of our HCM experts.