Employee disengagement is a global problem. Gallup’s study on workforce engagement found that, globally, 85% of employees are disengaged at work. It means they are not working at their full potential and do not add much value to the business.
The effect of disengagement has been compounded by the changing business landscape and the economic downturn, which have struck hard on employees and businesses alike.
How do organizations then plan to stay productive and throttle at their full potential?
Enters employee engagement surveys, which help measure employees’ involvement and commitment to their jobs and provide insights into the various aspects of workplace engagement.
In this article, we will discuss the intricacies of employee engagement and discuss the following:
What is Employee Engagement?
Employee engagement is a measure of the level of dedication, enthusiasm, and passion that employees have for their work and the organization. It is the zeal and desire that employees have to go above and beyond their job roles.
Engaged employees are invested in their jobs and contribute more to the success of the company than their disengaged counterparts. They are more productive, more likely to stay with the company, and deliver high-quality work.
“Employee engagement is often considered the cornerstone of business success. Engaged employees show more commitment towards business goals and values and help organizations succeed. They are ready to go the extra mile when needed, and they believe in making a difference through their efforts.” Srikant Chellappa, Founder & President, Engagedly
It is the responsibility of the leaders to engage their employees in order to be successful in a dynamic marketplace. They can enhance engagement by establishing proper communication channels, making employees feel a part of the organizational journey, providing regular feedback, and offering rewards for excellent performance.
An employee engagement survey is a tool used to measure the engagement level, commitment, and satisfaction of employees within an organization.
The survey typically includes a set of standardized questions that employees are asked to answer anonymously. The various aspects that surveys focus on are employee experience, communication, work-life balance, recognition, and career development opportunities.
It is important for organizations to regularly measure and monitor employee engagement to enhance the employee experience and help them stay productive. Implementing engagement initiatives such as employee recognition programs, professional development opportunities, and open communication channels can help boost engagement at different levels of the organization.
What is the Purpose of Employee Engagement Surveys?
To remain competitive in a dynamic and ever-changing business environment, organizations need a dedicated, engaged, and productive workforce. This has led to a surge in the use of employee engagement surveys to collect qualitative and quantitative data to make consistent improvements in employee engagement and experience.
Studies have shown that employees who actively participate in employee engagement surveys tend to be more invested in their jobs and actively contribute to the growth of the organization.
On the other hand, disengaged employees show decreased productivity and can even lead to negative customer experiences.
“Engaged employees are the driving force behind any successful organization, they are the ones who bring passion and purpose to their work, and ultimately drive the growth and success of the company. Investing in employee engagement not only improves morale and productivity, but also leads to higher retention rates and a stronger bottom line.” Jayashankar Balaraman – Founder CEO
There could be various reasons for disengagement, such as dissatisfaction with the job role, a lack of trust in the survey process, distrust in management, a lack of communication skills, or a fear of giving honest feedback.
Disengagement is costly, and to combat it, organizations conduct employee engagement surveys that serve multiple purposes, such as:
Understanding the drivers of employee engagement and dissatisfaction
Identifying opportunities to improve communication and collaboration
Measuring the success of engagement initiatives
Identifying opportunities to improve the employee experience
Understand the drivers of employee retention
Identifying the initiatives that are working well
Driving behavioral changes in employees
Keeping a pulse on employee sentiment
Predictor of employee behavior
What are the Benefits of Employee Engagement Surveys?
Employee engagement is critical to the success of an organization. It helps businesses improve their overall performance by creating an engaged, dynamic, and committed workforce. Much research has shown that engagement is an indicator of progress, and companies with higher engagement indices do well, even in unprecedented situations.
An employee engagement survey touches upon all aspects of a business and is known to benefit the following:
Identifying areas of improvement: They help identify specific areas where employees feel disengaged or where the company can improve.
Measuring engagement levels: Surveys can provide a quantitative measure of engagement levels, allowing organizations to track progress over time.
Understanding employee needs and expectations: They help understand the needs and expectations of their employees, which can inform decision making and improve employee satisfaction.
Improving communication and transparency: Surveys can help improve communication between management and employees, and increase transparency in the organization.
Boosting employee morale and retention: Engaged employees are more likely to be satisfied with their jobs and stay with the company longer, which can help boost morale and reduce turnover.
Avoiding Catastrophic Mistakes: Disengaged employees are more likely to make errors that can cause revenue loss. Conducting engagement surveys can help avoid such scenarios.
Best Practices to Create Employee Engagement Surveys
When creating employee engagement surveys, it is important to consider the following best practices:
Keep it short and focused: Use a limited number of questions that are directly related to the objectives of the survey.
Use open-ended and closed-ended questions: Use a mix of open-ended questions to gain qualitative insights and closed-ended questions to gain quantitative data.
Use clear and simple language: Avoid using jargon or complex language that might be difficult for some employees to understand.
Ensure anonymity: Make sure that employees feel comfortable providing honest and candid feedback by maintaining their anonymity.
Use a validated survey instrument: Use a survey instrument that has been validated and tested for reliability and validity.
Use a consistent format: Use a consistent format throughout the survey to make it easy for employees to understand and complete.
Allow for free-form feedback: Allow employees to provide free-form feedback, as it can provide valuable insights and context.
Provide context and background: Provide employees with context and background information about the survey and how the data will be used.
Consider the timing of the survey: The timing of the survey is of great importance in order to get a higher response rate and data accuracy.
Consider the frequency of the survey: Some organizations conduct surveys annually and then wait for a year to collect input from their employees. Much has already happened in the gap, and if their surveys are not accompanied by action, then it might result in disgruntled employees. Therefore, human resource managers must conduct engagement surveys regularly in order to send a message that employees’ input is valued.
Be responsive: Take action based on the survey results and communicate the actions taken to employees.
Use employee engagement software: Use a specialized tool or software to facilitate survey creation, distribution, and analysis.
How to Create and Conduct Employee Engagement Survey
Creating an employee engagement survey is a tedious task. It requires months of planning to address the areas that the survey should touch upon and the involvement of employees from every level of the organization.
To yield actionable results from surveys, HR managers should consider forming a cross-functional team of experts to look into different aspects of survey creation.
The following points highlight the extensive process of creating employee engagement surveys:
Asking the right questions in employee engagement surveys is crucial, as it ensures that the survey addresses pressing issues, provides valuable insights, and solicits employee feedback.
Clear, relevant, and unbiased questions help to gather accurate data, identify patterns and trends, and inform actions for improvement.
Additionally, it also helps to establish trust and confidence among employees that their feedback is valued and taken into account. You can refer to the below questions while drafting the survey:
On a scale of 1 to 5, how satisfied are you with your job?
How well do you feel your job aligns with your personal values and goals?
How well do you feel your immediate supervisor supports and encourages your professional development?
How well do you feel your ideas and suggestions are heard and considered within the company?
On a scale of 1 to 5, how strongly do you identify with the company’s mission and values?
How well do you feel your contributions are recognized and valued within the company?
How well do you feel you are able to balance your work and personal life?
How well do you feel your workload is managed and that you have the necessary resources to complete your tasks?
How well do you feel you are able to communicate with your coworkers and other departments within the company?
How well do you feel the company promotes a positive and inclusive work environment?
How well do you feel your job security and benefits meet your needs and expectations?
How well do you feel your job provides opportunities for growth and advancement?
How well do you feel the company’s management team responds to and addresses employee concerns?
How well do you feel the company’s training and development opportunities meet your needs?
How likely are you to recommend this company as a good place to work to others?
Employee Engagement Template
An employee engagement template is a tool that organizations can use to measure and track employee engagement levels. It typically includes a set of questions and/or surveys that employees are asked to complete, as well as a framework for analyzing the data collected and identifying areas for improvement.
Here is an example of an employee engagement template’s components:
Introduction: Provide an overview of the employee engagement survey and its purpose.
Demographics: Collect basic information about the employees taking the survey, such as job title, department, and length of time with the organization.
Engagement Factors: Ask questions related to the key factors that influence employee engagement, such as internal communication, leadership, recognition, and work-life balance.
Open-ended questions: Provide employees with an opportunity to share additional feedback and suggestions.
Action Plan: Use the data collected to identify areas for improvement and develop an action plan to address them.
Follow-up: Schedule a follow-up survey or meeting to check in on progress and measure the impact of the action plan.
It’s important to note that employee engagement surveys are not a one-time solution; they are an ongoing process. It’s important to track progress over time and make adjustments as needed.
Additionally, it’s also important to use a comprehensive employee engagement survey that is validated and benchmarked. With a validated survey, you can be sure that the results are reliable and meaningful.
What to do with Employee Engagement Survey Results
The employee engagement survey forms the baseline for creating an action plan and implementing it across the organization. The real job starts after collecting the responses of employees in various key focus areas.
Response data has to be thoroughly analyzed and subjected to various tests to check for validity and accuracy. To get the most out of the survey results, management must follow the following steps to create a strategic action plan:
Employee Engagement Survey with Engagedly
Engagedly’s E3 (Engage, Enable, and Execute) powered platform makes employee engagement surveys a breeze for your organization. You can seamlessly create surveys, collect responses, analyze them, and implement the insights offered by the tool.
Engagedly, in partnership with HR domain expert Edie Goldberg (Ph.D., Industrial and Organizational Psychology), has developed an E10 employee engagement survey to simplify measuring employee engagement. It helps you accomplish the following:
Demographic level reporting
Measure engagement index & favorability score
Identify gaps and insights to bridge them
Heatmaps to understand the thought process of employees
Get an instant action plan to engage your employees
Get In Touch With Us
Aaron Adams is an advisor for Engagedly, where he develops and implements strategic talent solutions that help support and drive the organization’s talent and business strategies. He holds a Master’s Degree in Industrial-Organizational Psychology from Wayne State University and has worked as a Right Management consultant and an OD consultant for a Fortune 20 Company. Currently, he leads Engagedly Teams responsible for onboarding, training, and consulting services.