Your employees are the most important part of your business; without them, everything would likely grind to a halt. While we may be well versed in asking customers and clients for their feedback on the company, how often do you ask your employees the same? Happy employees are thought to be up to 20% more productive than unhappy ones and are far less likely to take time off due to being unwell or stressed. So, how do you find out if you have happy employees? Ask them, of course. Let’s delve into what an employee survey is, along with the reasons behind conducting one, and finally several employee feedback questions you can utilize.
What is an employee survey?
An employee survey is effectively a questionnaire that asks staff how they feel about their job, their workplace, their managers, and anything else that could be relevant to your particular organization. Usually, these are conducted anonymously so that employees can fill them in as candidly and as honestly as possible. Questions can be presented in a number of different formats, from multiple choice options through to blank boxes for employees to fill in with their thoughts and opinions. Depending on the size of the company – and the number of staff – they can be emailed, printed, or made available online. How you set out your employee survey is entirely down to you, as long as it promotes open and honest discussion, and will garner the kind of information you need to improve staff happiness and engagement.
Why should you conduct an employee satisfaction survey?
There are dozens of reasons for conducting an employee questionnaire or survey; we’d need an entire article in itself to go through them all. However, here are some of the key reasons why you may want to consider conducting a staff survey:
- Show employees they matter – One of the main reasons you may want to conduct an employee satisfaction survey is to prove to your employees that you care what they think. By asking them how they feel about their working environment and the job itself, they’re more likely to feel valued as a staff member. However, this sense of value can start to fade if you don’t actually act on any of the feedback you’ve been given – so bear this in mind!
- Voicing concerns – Another excellent reason to conduct an employee satisfaction survey is so that employees can discreetly express any concerns they may have. If someone doesn’t feel confident enough to take their issue to a manager, then doing so in an anonymous questionnaire may just be the answer.
- Learning strengths and weaknesses – What does your company do well? What is it struggling with? An employee survey will give you the perfect opportunity to learn about the working conditions from an insider. It may also highlight some processes that need refining or provide insight into how best to motivate your team.
- New ideas – Often, those who are in the ‘thick of it’ every day may have some of the best views on how a company can grow or improve. They may have ideas for new products or services, how best to handle customer service enquiries, or how to solve a nagging issue within the workplace. There are likely to be some real hidden gems of knowledge hidden in those employee surveys, so make the most out of them.
Staff survey questions to ask
Now that we know the importance of a staff survey, it’s time to look into the kind of questions to ask your employees about job satisfaction. These employee feedback questions can be adapted to better fit your requirements, but they should serve as an excellent starting point for your questionnaire.
- How happy are you at work?
This is the basis for any employee satisfaction survey and can be asked in numerous different ways. You could ask it as a multiple choice question, a 1-10 scale question, or even leave it open for employees to add comments about their happiness in the company.
- Would you recommend [Company] as a good place to work?
If employees would be happy to recommend your organization as a potential workplace for friends and family, then this is clearly a good sign. It may also help with any future recruitment drives, too.
- Do you feel valued at work?
It’s estimated that only 21% of employees feel as though they are strongly valued at work, so this is something that needs to be evaluated. If they don’t feel appreciated, what can be done to change this?
- Do you see yourself working here in a year?
You can change this to another time frame that suits you best, but the premise stays the same. Are your employees here to stay or have they got their CV primed, ready to apply for new jobs?
- Does your manager/team leader motivate or inspire you?
Feeling motivated and inspired is the key to a productive employee. However, maybe their manager or team leader is holding them back. This is an excellent question to gauge the effectiveness of your management team as well.
- Does your manager/team leader keep people informed about what is happening?
You could also ask if employees find the management team transparent. It’s thought that transparency in a workplace has a considerable contribution to employee happiness, so it’s essential that the managers and leaders in the organization are open and honest with the staff.
- Do you have access to the tools/resources/learning to do your job well?
If there is something lacking in your organization, then this question may just highlight that! Maybe the employees feel as though they haven’t been appropriately trained or that they don’t have the right resources to be able to complete their job to the best of their ability.
- Do you receive appropriate feedback when a job has been completed well?
You can also turn this staff survey question on its head and ask the opposite. Do you receive appropriate feedback when a job hasn’t been completed well? Employees need to receive both praise and criticism, at the right times, in order to achieve the best results that they can.
- Do you believe there is ample opportunity for career growth within the company?
Many employees are keen to know that they can work their way up in a company, and things aren’t going to just turn stale. If negative responses are received for this question, then it could be time to look at your career development opportunities for employees.
- Do you feel as though you have a work-life balance?
This is an important one, especially in the age of digital devices. Employees can often feel as though they have to reply to emails on their phone, when they’re not even at the office, as we’re constantly connected. Promoting a work-life balance will improve employee happiness, productivity, and retention.
These are just a few examples of employee satisfaction survey questions, although there are hundreds more that could be asked. Consider what it is you’d like to learn from your staff and then build your employee questionnaire from there. At Customer Thermometer, our surveys aren’t reserved just for customer feedback!
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