When modern working professionals feel respected and valued in their organization, it shows in ways that extend far beyond the quality of their work.
In today’s global hybrid and remote working world, engaged and empowered people bring a positive attitude and energy to the workplace. They’re happy, secure, and satisfied in their roles. They’ll put themselves forward to learn more, build great relationships with their colleagues, and relish their place on the team. Thriving work cultures like this attract top talent, encourage career development, and see great retention rates.
So how can HR professionals build thriving cultures like this? How can they take the pulse of their organization to see if the people who come to work, log into meetings, and show up every day are happy and satisfied in their positions? And how can they help those who may be unhappy or unfulfilled to find their voice?
The simplest way to find out what’s happening for the people in an organization is to ask.
It can be evident in small and mid-size organizations when things don’t feel right. But in organizations with hundreds if not thousands of people working from an office, remote, or hybrid work environment—HR professionals need an agile approach to measuring employee satisfaction. And that’s where employee satisfaction surveys prove to be invaluable.
What is an employee satisfaction survey?
Employee satisfaction surveys are lists of carefully considered questions that organizations ask their people to find out how they feel about their work, workplace, and company culture. Surveys may be completed with the respondents’ names or anonymized.
Employee satisfaction surveys help HR professionals understand what’s happening across their organization and get the truth about how people feel. Survey responses can provide invaluable information to help companies troubleshoot problems and provide the solid foundations needed for sustainable growth.
Why is it important to issue an employee satisfaction survey?
Issuing employee satisfaction surveys enables HR professionals to collect, collate, and analyze real-time data from people across their organizations. It’s a way to see what’s happening, understand how people are feeling, and identify if there’s a need to take action and implement change.
Surveys also increase engagement because when people see that sharing their thoughts has resulted in change, they feel listened to and valued by their organization. And people who feel engaged are more likely to stay with their company, be productive, and add to the company’s reputation as an excellent workplace.
How often should employee satisfaction surveys be issued?
With all the digital tools and connectivity available to HR professionals today, creating and sending employee surveys isn’t the time-consuming task it once was. Still, surveys need to be carried out with a clear objective—and with time to follow up and act on the responses received.
Before creating your survey, it’s helpful to set clear goals and design questions to provide actionable insights. Think about what you want to learn, what results you want to collect, what you’ll use the responses for, and why the answers matter to your organization.
Your goals will help you determine the frequency with which you send your surveys. For instance, you might want to survey people regularly to see how they’re adapting to hybrid working or issue a single survey to see whether a particular training program has been a good investment.
Getting actionable feedback is key because if people fill in employee satisfaction surveys but nothing changes, they’ll soon need help to see the point of engaging. People are much more likely to participate in your future surveys if they see their company taking action based on their feedback.
While there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy for the frequency of your surveys, it’s safe to say that asking your people how they feel more than once a year will help you paint a clearer picture of your organization.
What to ask? Here’s a list of questions to include in an employee satisfaction survey
Let’s look at some questions you could include in your employee satisfaction survey to understand what’s happening for your people. If a topic is likely to be sensitive, you can let people know that you’ll anonymize their responses.
You’ll see that the survey questions are short and sound like a real person is asking them. Keeping the tone warm and friendly like this helps people engage with the content of your survey and feel that it’s safe to answer honestly.
For some questions, adding a numerical scale, e.g., “On a scale of 1-5, how much do you agree or disagree with this statement?” helps offer a finite number of potential answers and produce a manageable data volume for your analysis.
Helpful employee satisfaction survey questions include:
1. Do you like the company culture at this organization?
A healthy company culture is essential for people’s morale. It promotes good working relationships, builds teams, nurtures collaboration, and makes people feel valued and safe. In a good company culture, people can bring their whole selves to work. They’re happy, productive, and feel fulfilled. If people don’t like how work feels, if they don’t feel safe and comfortable, then there’s a problem that will eventually impact morale, productivity—and the bottom line.
2. Do you feel that your work contributes to company goals?
When people feel like their work is contributing to the company’s goals, they feel they have a purpose and are making an impact. They bring ideas to the table, set high-level personal goals that align with the bigger picture, and set clear milestones to measure their progress.
When people feel they’re contributing to the company goals, retention levels increase, and levels of absenteeism fall.
3. Have we given you everything you need to do your job well?
Ensuring people have access to the training, support, hardware, and software they need to do their job correctly helps create engagement and job satisfaction.
When people are left to struggle with dated software or denied access to necessary training courses, frustration and unhappiness can impact their happiness at work.
4. Do you feel your managers communicate with you regularly and clearly?
Being proactive about keeping in touch with people inside your organization makes them feel valued, shows respect, and helps create engagement. Regular managerial communications with people create a space for people to speak up and share any issues. It also ensures that everyone has access to the support they need. This is particularly important for people who work in remote or hybrid situations and may operate in different time zones than their managers.
5. Do you think your managers value your feedback?
Asking people inside the business for their suggestions, ideas, insights, opinions, and feedback on how things could change or improve is a powerful way for agile organizations to streamline operations.
Managers may only want or be able to act on some things they learn. But listening, acknowledging, and thanking respondents for their time can make people feel included, valued, and heard.
And that’s important because when people feel their contributions haven’t been heard and nothing changes, their contributions feel worthless, and they start to feel disappointed and frustrated with their employer.
6. How often does your manager recognize your contributions?
Managerial recognition isn’t just about annual pay reviews and bonuses. When managers take the time to recognize people’s work and thank them for the difference they make, it boosts morale across the team and the wider business.
7. On a scale of 0-10, how likely would you recommend working for our company?
Do your people think your company is a good place to work? How would they rate you as an organization? Are you an employer they recommend to friends or family looking for new roles? And how loyal is your workforce—if a competitor tried to poach some of your best people, might they succeed in tempting them to leave you and go elsewhere?
By applying the employee net promoter score (eNPS) metric, you can assess how happy your people are at work, their level of job satisfaction, and their readiness to recommend your company to others.
The score gives HR leaders an effective way to survey an organization, analyze the results, and develop a plan to implement changes.
8. What—if anything—would make you quit your job?
This straightforward and powerful question helps people to home in on emerging problems—and provides a timely opportunity for HR professionals to step in and sort things out. Of all the questions to include in your survey, this is the one you’ll want to ensure you respond to, if appropriate.
Using HR tech for your employee satisfaction survey
Keeping employment satisfaction surveys short and sweet ensures that people finish all the questions you include. And with today’s accessible HR tech, it’s easier than ever to create intuitive online employee satisfaction surveys that people will enjoy completing and submitting.
Different HR tech tools have various features to help you gather insights from your people. You can find tools that create custom survey questions, have custom polling options, and can even analyze the important drivers for engagement and morale in your business.
Using HR tech means the feedback data from your employee satisfaction survey sits in one place, enabling HR professionals to analyze results and gain critical insights easily—even across the biggest organizations.
Analyzing employee satisfaction survey results
You’ve taken the time and used valuable resources to conduct a survey and gather the feedback your people have shared. Now it’s time to analyze your employee engagement survey results and report on them to create positive changes and improvements across your business.
Make it easy for team managers and stakeholders to gain actionable insights and identify areas of improvement by visualizing your results. You can use pie charts, bar graphs, line charts, or graphics to draw people’s attention to your key findings.
Numeric scores express your results with clarity, making it easy to notice patterns, trends, and problems. But your analysis doesn’t stop with the numbers. Qualitative data can be a vital part of the bigger picture, and it’s worth running focus groups and digging deeper into people’s responses to see if they have any concerns or criticisms.
Segmenting your data by employee groups and demographics offers deeper insights into each group’s challenges at work. You can use your findings to measure specific team performance, understand why some perform better than others, and create an action plan for the areas that need attention. And to go deeper, you can connect your survey findings to your business outcomes. By combining critical information from your HR platform and business data from your ERP, you can start to understand what the results mean for the business.
Once you’ve conducted a survey, you have a set of results you can benchmark against previous scores or industry standards to see how you’re performing. And then it’s time to act.
Report your findings to your managers and create a plan of action. This is your opportunity to take the feedback you’ve been given and show your people that their thoughts are valuable—and can drive the change they want to see in their organization.
At HiBob, we’ve built a modern HR platform designed for modern business needs—today and beyond.
An HR platform such as Bob offers a one-stop shop for all things HR. It sits at the center of your HR ecosystem, is fully customizable, and grows with your organization.
For HR, it delivers automation of many common processes, allows greater oversight and visibility of the business, and centralizes all people data in a secure, user-friendly environment.
For managers, it provides access to data and insights to help them lead more effectively and streamline processes.
For employees, it’s the tools and information they need to connect, develop, and grow throughout their journey.
In a short time, Bob can be deployed to enable communication, collaboration, and connectivity that drives stronger engagement, productivity, and business outcomes.