How to Approach Employee Engagement Surveys?

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Employees are the greatest asset of an organisation. The success of an organisation is determined by the work done by you and your employees. Therefore, good employee engagement is something which is necessary to attain a high level of organisational growth.

Employee Engagement is a property of the relationship between an organisation and its employees. An engaged employee is an employee who actively and enthusiastically gets involved in the work with the interest of the organisation and to fulfil organisational objectives. Employee Surveys are a great method to know and measure the level of employee engagement in a company.

What is an Employee Engagement Survey?

An Employee Engagement Survey is a survey that measures the degree to which the employees feel valued in your company, their motivation levels and how passionate they are about the work. It tells their overall understanding and syncing with the common organisational goals.

When you are creating an Employee Engagement Survey, it is necessary to take care of certain important aspects of your survey. Let’s review what you need to do before preparing your survey.

Define these Before You Prepare Your Employee Engagement Surveys

Before creating an Employee Engagement Survey, you need to have these things clearly defined:

  • Objectives & Purpose
  • Who to Survey?
  • Preparedness to make changes
  • Responsible Team

Let’s review how you do this.

Objectives & Purpose

Before you prepare your Employee Engagement survey, you must define the objectives of the survey and for what purpose you are surveying your employees. The main purpose should not only be to measure employee engagement but to increase it if needed.

Moreover, it should be clearly defined in a way that it pays emphasis on the fact that the survey aims at improving the things for the employees and not to penalize them.

Who to survey?

As it is an Employee Engagement Survey, the main stakeholders here would be your employees who need to survey. Remember that you can’t rely on a small number of employees taken as a sample survey. But you need to cover most of your employees to know the exact employee engagement.

Preparedness to Make Changes

An Employee Engagement Survey is only useful when you actually want to increase Employee Engagement through Employee Satisfaction. For this, you need to be prepared to make changes as per the feedback and opinions of the employees.

Measuring the level of Employee Engagement can only help when you really want to increase it and you can do this by not only knowing what employees expect from the organisation but also working to improve things.

Responsible Team

Before conducting Employee Engagement Surveys, you need to make sure to assign this task to a responsible team. It is not wrong that the HR team is solely responsible for conducting such surveys, but you also need to include management and supervisors too in this task.

Check Your Survey with these Conditions Before Sending

Employee engagement surveys are a great way to measure employee engagement and can fetch you good results if used properly. But before sending a survey to the employees, do ensure that the survey you are sending is the right one and serves you the purpose.

For this, you need to ask these questions to yourself before sending the survey and then analyze whether your survey seems to prove fruitful or not.

Is the Survey Fetching the Data You Want?

The purpose of the employee survey you have created is to get some meaningful data. You need to know the number of employees engaged passionately to achieve common organisational goals.

Before sending the survey to the employees, you must ask yourself whether this survey serves this purpose and helps you collect the required data or not.

Is it Valid and Reliable to Measure Employee Engagement?

You should make sure that the survey you are sending is reliable and valid. The survey you are creating not only should enable you to measure Employee Engagement in terms of numbers and percentage, but also provide consistent results.

Also, ensure that the survey doesn’t promote any selection bias or response bias. It should not include such questions which lead you towards a specific answer.

Is it Able to Find Reasons?

The survey you have created will help you measure employee engagement. After all, it is the basic function of any employee engagement survey. But what if you get to know that employee engagement is very low in your company? Wouldn’t you like to know the reason behind such a result?

Ask yourself, does your survey include such questions which help you find the reasons also? If your Employee engagement comes to below, it should help you find what went wrong so that you can improve on that aspect. And if you receive a good result, knowing the reasons would help you to maintain it.

For instance, you can ask a question, “What to do like the most in this organisation?” and provide different aspects or department names as options like

  • Work culture
  • Team spirit
  • Leave Policy
  • Some other aspect

Likewise, you can ask, “Which department do you think needs improvement the most?

  • Human Resources
  • Facilities
  • Accounts
  • Transport
  • Any other Department

These types of questions will help you find reasons for the positive or negative opinions of the employees.

Does it Motivate Employees to Respond?

One of the biggest struggles of Employee Engagement surveys is to get a good response rate. Before sending the survey, you should ask yourself, does the survey motivate the employees to respond? For this, you should create the survey in a way that seems interesting for the employees to answer.

You can use open-ended questions, and by answering them, the employees can give their suggestions. This will motivate the employees to respond as employees are usually keen to give their open suggestions. For instance, you can ask:

How do You Think we can Improve our Work Culture?

If a certain percentage, let us say 50% of the employees respond to the survey, it cannot be claimed as an accurate survey. Because non-engaged employees are usually those who do not respond. So it will not help to give you a clear picture unless you receive a good response rate.

Is it Fetching Accurate Data?

Even if you get a good response rate, it is not necessary that the data is accurate. The reason behind, employees at times try to create a desirable image of themselves by hiding their true feelings and opinions. This may be due to fear of getting penalized, or due to lack of trust that anything will improve.

Even if it is anonymous, sometimes employees fear that a low engagement rate will affect the environment of the company. Moreover, external factors like recession and lack of jobs also have an effect on the accuracy because the employees tend to adjust to the situations and show engagement just in fear of losing their jobs.

Use the Right Approach

To get the answer to these questions and deal with these problems, you need to follow the right approach while creating employee engagement surveys. You should try to follow the best practices if you want to receive a good response rate.

  • Explain the objectives of the Survey
  • Use the Right Questions
  • Keep small Incentives to Attract more Responses
  • Involve Mid-level and Upper-level Management
  • Use an Effective Survey Software

Let’s review how these practices can help you achieve a good response rate and a better Employee Engagement.

Explain the Objectives of the Survey

You should clearly explain the well-defined objectives of the survey to your employees. You must make them understand that the survey is for their benefit and conveying their true opinion will lead to improvement, not punishment.

Use the Right Questions

Always use the right type of Employee Engagement Survey questions. Avoid using leading questions that try to take the respondents to a certain answer. Rather, use fair questions and provide all the options leading towards all possible directions. This will prevent bias in the questions and increase the response rate.

For instance, you put up a question:

How do you think your experience is working in this organisation? Select one among the options.

  • Excellent
  • Good
  • Average

It is a leading question as it is not giving any negative option to choose from. Whereas, the options in a non-biased question should be:

  • Excellent
  • Good
  • Average
  • Bad
  • Poor

Keep Small Incentives to Attract More Responses

Some companies make it compulsory to respond to an Employee Engagement Survey. This will give you a very good response rate but can even affect engagement adversely by irritating the employees. Offering small incentives is a better alternative to receive a good response rate.

For instance, you can offer some discount coupons or coupon codes on completion of the survey which can be used in the company’s cafeteria while purchasing eatables.

Involve Mid-level and Upper-level Management

Always involve management in Employee Engagement surveys. Usually, the managers and supervisors think it to be only an HR job. It is true that HR is the main department involved in these surveys, but employee engagement can only improve when management takes an active part in it.

Use an Effective Survey Software

To create an Employee Engagement Survey, you can use an effective Survey Software that enables you to create customized surveys to take direct feedback from the employees. Good survey software is quick to set up and easy to use.

Zonka Feedback is one of the easiest Employee Feedback Software and Survey Apps to create such surveys. It enables you to collect data from the employees through multiple channels like emails, SMS, online, kiosk, online and offline surveys.


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