Employee engagement surveys are one of the most effective tools at a company’s disposal when it comes to maintaining employee satisfaction, engagement, and overall productivity. But where’s the best place to begin? This article will explain why and how your company should get started.
It’s no secret that engaged employees make the best employees. Engagement is good for their happiness and involvement, and it’s also positive for the company’s performance. In short: everybody wins. But what isn’t always so obvious is how to monitor engagement levels, and how to find ways to get employees more informed and connected when it comes to engagement. The most effective tool? The employee engagement survey, which, when administered correctly, will allow a business to assess and adjust in order to maximize employee engagement. It will help employees feel like their voice is heard, and also give them a means to share their thoughts and ideas regarding what would boost their involvement.
In this article, you will learn:
1. What is employee engagement?
2. What are the 3 C’s of employee engagement?
3. Why employee surveys are important
4. Why you need to conduct employee engagement surveys
5. How to conduct an employee engagement survey
6. What should be included in an employee engagement survey
7. Examples of employee engagement surveys
8. 10 employee engagement survey questions
9. Getting better results with Sociabble & an employee engagement strategy
1. What is Employee Engagement?
Employee engagement is viewed by some as a quality that is exhibited by employees, but this isn’t completely correct. In fact, employee engagement is a two-way street. It’s a mutual commitment between the organization and its workforce. You can even say a kind of contract that relies on a communication promise between both parties. At its essence, employee engagement includes everything related to how the company creates the best possible conditions for employees to:
Give their best. Engaged employees want to perform because they see the achievement of their own personal objectives and those of the company as being connected.
Commit to the other team members & company values and goals. They embrace the values of their organization as well as their specific team, and they incorporate these into their work.
Be motivated to contribute to the success of their team, department, and organization. Engaged employees want to be involved and add value. They give because they see personal value in contributing, and they take pride in this; it gives them satisfaction because they know in the long run it’s good for everyone.
In short, engaged employees are informed of what’s going on within their company and their industry, they care about their fellow employees, and they stay involved and perform at their best because they understand that their success and the success of the company are directly related.
2. What are the 3 C’s of Employee Engagement?
What lies at the core of employee engagement? It’s often been said that there are three crucial “C’s” that contribute toward encouraging employees to be involved, engaged, and informed at their jobs. Of course, there may be other factors as well, but these, when taken together, make a tremendous difference in how employees view their company.
Employees need to feel like they’re in the loop and know what they need to know, about their specific roles, but also what’s going on within the company and the industry as a whole. And remember: communication is a two-way street. They need to feel listened-to as well, in order for employee communication to be complete.
As employees build their skill set and feel more comfortable with their role, they want the opportunity to grow and become more involved. It’s important to enable this through opportunities that reward their skills and overall competence. Without this, they’ll have no motivation to perform.
For the final “C”, employees need to feel like management at the company actually takes a vested interest in their well-being. It’s only natural: for them to care about the company they work for, they need to feel that the company cares about them in return. This mutuality is what creates strong bonds between a company and its workforce.
3. Why Employee Surveys are Important
When it comes to clarifying why employee engagement matters to your company, a long explanation of the many benefits might suffice, but sometimes simple numbers say it best. Here are a few that show the importance of engagement.
According to Gallup, highly engaged business units realize a:
41% reduction in absenteeism
17% increase in productivity
20% increase in sales
21% increase in profitability
10% increase in customer ratings
Meanwhile, a disengaged employee can cost a company anywhere from $3,400 to $10,000 a year in salary.
Makes you think, doesn’t it?
4. Why You Need to Conduct Employee Engagement Surveys
Employee engagement surveys, as a tool, are a potential anecdote to the problems posed by disengagement. But they serve a number of more specific needs as well when it comes to getting an idea of if and how employees are engaged, beyond simply measuring and increasing engagement overall. To name a few:
• Identifying which engagement initiative is the most effective, what drives employees to perform. This eliminates waste by allowing you to focus resources on projects that work.
• Finding gaps of employee engagement among the workforce. Are frontline workers connected and involved? What about those working remotely? You can find out.
• Giving employees a voice, encouraging bottom-up information and feedback. Sometimes the obstacles to engagement are simple and obvious, if you listen to those who encounter them daily.
• Checking the understanding of key messages. Sometimes messaging that you assume is being absorbed is not getting through, for reasons you never could have predicted.
• Analyzing the link between employee engagement and business outcomes. This will give tangible proof of why and how resources should be allocated to boost engagement.
• Insight into the growth of the organization. Learn how expansions and new hires are affecting the ways employees engage.
• Predicting and decreasing employee turnover. Find out if and why employees are considering leaving, and uncover ways to decrease that turnover.
A simple survey, like the kind Sociabble offers, can help you gauge engagement and interest, and show your employees that you value their opinion.
5. How to Conduct an Employee Engagement Survey
Preparing an employee engagement survey isn’t horribly complicated if you plan it in steps. Because there are a few things worth keeping in mind while putting it together, and things to watch out for. Ultimately, it pays to keep in mind why you’re conducting the survey in the first place, and what you want to achieve. Here are the factors worth keeping in mind.
• Set specific goals. What are the objectives, specifically what do you want to accomplish with the information you receive?
• Plan out the survey. This includes answering questions like when it will be launched, how it will be communicated to employees, what’s the timeline for receiving responses, and will the results be announced.
• Prepare the questions according to your goals. You’ve determined what you want to learn already, just make sure the questions you’re asking are relevant.
• Keep it confidential. Reassuring employees that they can speak candidly will ensure more honest and helpful results.
• Use a tool to conduct the survey. Sociabble, for example, our Employee Communication platform, comes with a survey feature built in.
• Motivate employees to participate. One way to do this is with a CSR reward program, like our own Sociabble Trees.
• Analyze & announce the results, and implement measures accordingly. Use the information you’ve received to configure your strategy, then add the “nuts & bolts” changes that will make it come to life.
6. What Should Be Included in an Employee Engagement Survey
A survey is only as effective as the questions is contains. First, it’s very important to capture the attention of the employee from the very start. And announce clearly why the survey is being conducted (objectives) and why their feedback matters. Additionally, plan to share the results with the respondents and explain the action plans to be put in place once the results are known.
Other tips include:
• Organize questions across categories such as: performance & engagement, company culture, employee development, diversity & inclusion, etc.
• Be precise in your questions, avoid being too broad or general. They need to be clear, meaningful, and result in actionable data.
• Don’t give surveys too frequently, people get tired of being asked to take them
• Let people answer anonymously, but define a segment that is meaningful for the purpose of the survey (i.e. country, department, seniority level, etc.)
• Make a template and stick to it, so that you can compare results and trends over time, showing consistency
• Allow comments as well, in order to have qualitative feedback
7. Examples of Employee Engagement Surveys
These are just a few examples of how companies can use employee engagement surveys as an effective communication and strategic tool. There are a variety of scenarios and kinds of surveys, which when used together, can produce effective results.
• eNPS Employee Net Promoter Score surveys
A classic tool within companies, this type of survey is used at least once a year by HR departments and is very important in defining the level of employee engagement. Generally speaking, it is a useful tool for gauging employee loyalty, to the company and its products.
Use case: When Sidetrade, a Sociabble client, decided to rapidly expand their talent pool while also retaining existing talent to meet growth needs, they relied on these kinds of surveys to help maximize retention.
• Bottom-up surveys
Used extensively to monitor remote work conditions and effectiveness (i.e. remote working equipment at home, health conditions, logistics and practical preferences on shifts, suggestions, etc).
Use case: Many companies used bottom-up surveys during the pandemic to ensure that employees working from home had what they needed. Sociabble has a built-in survey feature that makes it easy to target a very specific audience or mainstream segment, to address both local and global targets, to ask customizable questions, to use multiple languages, etc.
• Defining a new CSR goal
Before launching a CSR program within a company, it is recommended to map the values to which the employees are committed, so that there is a real consistency between their values and the company’s. It may also be the opportunity to ask employees to suggest specific CSR actions.
Use case: CSR surveys can be especially handy when it comes to finding environmental causes that everyone can get behind. Sociabble Trees is one example of a CSR Sociabble feature that helps with reforestation, and rewards employees for engagement with actual trees planted in their names. “Support My Cause” also enables companies to take surveys to find out what causes employees really care about, as demonstrated in the image below.
• Make sure critical news gets through
There is some information that is critical, and employees need to know it and most of all, understand it. A good way to check whether employees received information or not is to organize a check-in survey a few days after the news is released, and then adjust the communication plan according to the results.
Use case: When RCI Bank, another Sociabble client, wanted to make sure employees were in the loop about their annual report and what it signified, they released a series of quizzes via Sociabble designed to gauge the level of employee comprehension regarding the report.
Connect frontline workers with company life
Frontline workers need to feel part of the company and give their opinion, share suggestions, and receive important updates, even if they’re not located in the office or at a desk. The right surveys can make sure they’re feeling involved and engaged.
Use case: When BBGR, a user of the Sociabble platform, sought to reconnect with its factory workforce, they used Sociabble surveys and quizzes, delivered via the platform’s mobile app, to test the workers’ knowledge and keep them in the loop.
8. 10 Employee Engagement Survey Questions
Ultimately, the kinds of questions that are asked in an employee engagement survey depend on the objectives you are trying to achieve, and the information you are trying to acquire. But in terms of gauging general engagement, these are a few examples of the kinds of questions that can provide insight into how employees view life at your organization:
1. Would you recommend this company to people you know, as a good place to work?
2. Do you see yourself continuing to work here in the long term?
3. Do your daily activities provide you with a sense of purpose and accomplishment?
4. Do your daily activities provide you with a healthy amount of challenge?
5. Is your role at the company clear to you?
6. Do you understand how your role supports the overall goals of the company?
7. Do you feel that the company is headed in the right direction?
8. Are the company’s objectives, both long term and short term, communicated clearly by management?
9. Do you agree with the company’s mission and does it inspire you?
10. Are you happy with your current work-life balance and what is expected of you?
Of course, these questions can be adapted and changed depending upon the subject you want to investigate. Possible directions may include: digital tools, remote work, personal safety, career development, training and education, compensation, equal opportunities—the list is long. Regardless, however, it’s important to keep the questions short, concise, and to the point. You do not want to waste people’s time!
An example of the kind of engagement surveys you can easily send via the Sociabble platform.
9. Getting Better Results with Sociabble & an Employee Engagement Strategy
To achieve the best level of employee engagement at your company, it pays to implement a proper employee engagement strategy with the right tools. These steps will make a difference.
If you want to continue working on employee engagement at your organization and need additional help, Sociabble is a complete Employee Communication solution with tons of features built in to help boost engagement, including an advanced employee engagement survey module and rewards options.
Easy, quick, customizable, and with multi-language translation features, Sociabble surveys are a goldmine of information for managers and company leaders; when used to their full potential to reward and empower employees, they will give your company the critical boost in employee engagement you need.
Just click the link to learn more and to schedule a free Sociabble demo.