31 Jul 5 Benefits of Launching Your Employee Engagement Survey Right Now
During this crisis and racial equality movement, I’ve been asked a lot about employee surveying. Questions like:
- Should we still launch an engagement survey?
- When should we do it?
- How should we approach it?
I think an important question to ask is what happens if you don’t survey?
Your employees are counting on you right now. They may be anxious, afraid, frustrated, angry, grieving etc. and it’s in your best interest to create the most safe and supportive work environment possible. For those working remotely, they may feel isolated and disconnected from their teams and ultimately from the company mission and goals. If you fail to listen and respond, you risk morale, engagement, productivity, turnover and your bottom line.
5 Benefits of Launching Your Employee Engagement Survey Right Now
- It will foster a culture of trust and feedback.
- It will ensure employees feel valued, heard, and included.
- It will surface what’s happening in your workforce and help you make data-driven decisions.
- It will highlight organizational strengths to leverage and identify challenges and opportunities for improvement.
- It will help you navigate this current climate and provide guidance for long-term success.
As with any time you survey, you’ll want to create a plan of action first. I always urge clients to solicit feedback from employees only when they are ready to listen, share, and act. Asking employees for honest feedback is asking them to be vulnerable and trust that they will be taken seriously. There is nothing worse than launching an employee engagement survey and doing nothing with it.
Things to Consider Before Creating and Launching Your Survey:
- Determine your purpose. Before you even think of creating survey questions, clearly define the purpose of your efforts. What feedback are you most interested in receiving from employees right now? Is this a larger annual survey or a small “pulse” or spot survey? How will you use the results? The answers to these questions will drive your strategy and communication.
- Identify survey type and participants. The purpose of your survey should help you determine who to include and what type of survey you need. Bigger decisions might require company-wide feedback, while smaller ones might only affect a select group of employees. You will also want to select the team that will review the results and create a strategy to address the feedback.
- Set a timeline. Let employees know how quickly you’d like to hear back from them. Some employers have been successful incentivizing employees by offering a gift card (or some reward) to those who complete the survey. You want your participation rates to be high so your data accurately represents the group. You also want to set a timeline for the review/strategy team that you can commit to reviewing the results and collaborating on a plan.
- Construct questions. Annual surveys are different from Pulse surveys. An annual engagement survey typically ranges from 25-50 questions with several categories, both multiple choice and open-ended, and takes approximately 30-45 minutes to complete. Pulse surveys are more frequent and targeted and should be 3-7 questions and no more than 5-10 minutes to complete (e.g. return to work survey, benefits survey etc.). I suggest doing anonymous surveys so employees feel comfortable sharing without fear of judgement or retaliation.
- Follow up on results. ALWAYS FOLLOW UP. When you share results and take action after a survey, your employees can see that you took their feedback seriously and valued their opinions.
Here’s a roadmap for survey follow-up:
- Based on feedback, select key focus areas and create a plan of action/improvement plan
- Communicate results, key trends identified, and improvement plan to participants
- Implement the plan, involving members of leadership and supervisors
- Include employees in the process, asking for ongoing feedback and involvement
- Continuously evaluate improvement plan success and revise as needed
- Determine timing of follow up survey(s)
I know, I know…in a time of crisis, these steps might feel like a lot. But remember that it doesn’t have to be perfect. Setting aside a little time to think through questions, results, communication, and strategy will help you take action faster once the data comes rolling in.
I’ve created tailored surveys for employers and supported teams in their improvement plan and have seen long-term positive impact on the culture and success of the business. Whether you use a survey tool such as Survey Monkey or platforms like Tiny Pulse or Culture Amp, if you need help with any part of this process, I’m here for you!