Understand How Your Employees Breathe: 5 Most Common Employee Surveys 

Use these employee surveys to find out what your employees think and feel and advance the state of employee experience in your company.

September 4, 2020 By Sara Ana Cemazar Share on Twitter! Share on Facebook! Share on LinkedIn!
most common employee surveys

Employee surveys are a great way to understand how your employees breathe. Employee surveys are used in small, medium and enterprise companies, and they are utilized by both HR and non-HR professionals inside organizations. 

📗 In this article, you will find out what are the most common employee surveys you can use in your company to check the state of different aspects of your workplaceSince employee recognition is one of the best ways to improve your employee culture, productivity and retention, check out our Employee Recognition Playbook first. 

Why You Should Use Employee Surveys 

Employee surveys can give you insights into your employees’ state of mind, but this is just a starting point when discussing the benefits of conducting employee surveys. What really matters is not only to check your employees’ pulse, but also to react to results of your surveys. 

It is worrying that only 20% of employees say that their superiors do not follow up concerns raised after  surveys, so definitely avoid aimless surveys and make them a useful tool for detecting sentiment and reacting to it. 

employee survey

Read what benefits of conducting employee surveys are there. 

Detect employees’ feelings and opinions 

Of course, employee surveys’ most immediate benefit is detecting employees’ feelings and opinions. For example, during COVID-19, it was crucial to check employees’ health and mental state. Another example is checking if your new hires have found it easy to navigate in the company. 

Give your employees voice 

By asking their opinion on some matter and acting upon it, you are giving your employees a voice. In other words, employee surveys are a way for you to see an aggregate opinion of your employees on certain issuesFor example, if you are implementing new software, you should be guided by your employees’ demands for functionalities. 

Drive change in the company 

The results of your employee surveys on engagement, satisfaction, benefits or development can be your starting point when discussing the need for change within an organizationFurthermore, by iterating the same survey later on, you can easily track the progress your change initiative has. 

However, the average employee survey response rate is only 30%. Therefore, you need to apply proper employee survey design to ensure higher response rate to fall back on. 

employee survey response

Collect and track data easily 

A huge benefit of using an employee survey software like SurveyRocks is the ability to segment the receivers of your employee surveys, dispersing them and tracking the data easily.  

📗 Find out more about SurveyRocks and who in your organization it is suited for. 

Empower listening across the board 

By utilizing employee surveys in a smart way, you will be able to promote it as a great method for listening to employees’ concerns and needs across the board. In the end, employee surveys are not only meant for HR, but can be used by managers, team leaders and department heads to make data-driven decisions. 

Enable Your Mangers to Use Employee Surveys 

Depending on their management style, managers are utilizing different methods for developing new ideas, assigning tasks and empowering their teams. However, employee surveys should be used by managers no matter their style if they want to set their employees for success and enable employees’ development. Moreover, the outcome of employee listening and development will be more cohesive teams and better business results. 

However, to stress the point already made in the article – your managers should not use employee surveys just for the sake of it. The key aspect is to act upon them! Research shows that teams of managers who reviewed survey results and identified actions to follow up with had engagement score of 63% compared to 27% engagement score of teams whose managers did not review or follow up survey results with action. 

employee surveys effect on employee engagement

Employee Engagement Surveys 

Employee engagement surveys are probably most commonly used among employee surveys. This is natural since employee engagement is the most popular measurement for estimating the state of your employees’ productivity and involvement in their work. 

According to Gallup’s research, engaged employees are 17% more productive than their disengaged colleagues, and highly engaged workplaces observe 41% lower absenteeism. Therefore, use these employee survey questions to inspect your employee engagement levels and follow it up with necessary action. 

Employee engagement survey questions 

  • How motivated do you feel by your role? 
  • How aligned do you feel with company goals? 
  • On a scale from one to five, do you feel your work is recognized? 
  • On a scale from one to five, how much do you feel valued by your manager? 
  • How clear is your understanding of the work you do? 

Employee Experience Surveys 

Employee experience is measured all along your employees’ journey in your company. Therefore, you can assess it in various stages of your employees’ lifecycle and conduct surveys related specifically to onboarding, development or exit from the company. 

According to IBMhigh employee experience scores correlate with better business results measured in return on assets and return on sales. 

employee experience

Employee experience survey questions 

  • Did you find it easy to navigate during onboarding? 
  • How would you grade the work atmosphere in your department? 
  • Do you feel stressed out by work? Why? 
  • How would you grade your professional advancement since you have been in the company? 
  • Would you recommend this company to your friends as a good place to work at? 

Remote Work Employee Surveys 

Remote work is more present than ever during COVID-19 pandemic. However, 20% of employees cite lack of collaboration and communication as one of the biggest problems they face when working remote. 

work from home

In order to keep your employees aligned, productive and connected while working from home, you should check in with them more than usual. Moreover, it is absolutely instrumental that mangers also regularly send out employee surveys to their remote teams. 

Remote work survey questions 

  • Are you able to stick to your work schedule? 
  • On a scale from one to five, how productive are you at home compared to the office? 
  • What is your biggest struggle working from home? 
  • Are you getting enough support from your manager during working from home? 
  • Are you happy with how frequently you connect with colleagues and superiors? 

Employee Satisfaction Survey 

Employee satisfaction depends on many factors, yet it is crucial to your employees’ productivity. As one of main employee motivation drivers, this employee survey is one of the most common ones used by HR Professionals. 

Moreover, it can help you determine why your employees might not be satisfied. Do they find employee benefits inadequate? Are there problems with their direct manager? Is it the company culture in general? 

Employee satisfaction survey questions 

  • Do you find your work meaningful? 
  • Do you feel valued for your contributions? 
  • Does our company adequately promote work-life balance? 
  • Do you feel like you are learning? 
  • Do you think the compensation for your work is fair? 

Employee Exit Surveys 

Employees quitting, being fired or retiring is an inevitable step of your employee journeyMore importantly, this employee survey can give you a valuable insight into the reasons your employees are leaving your company. With that information, you have better chances to reduce your employee turnover.  

employees quitting

Employee exit survey questions 

  • What are the reasons for you leaving the company? 
  • How would you grade the relationship you had with your last manager? 
  • Do you believe you have had enough opportunities for development in this company? 
  • On a scale from one to five, how many opportunities to learn and grow did you have here? 
  • Do you believe you were adequately compensated for your work? 

Employee Surveys Best Practices 

Employee surveys present a great opportunity to advance different aspects of your employee experience. However, you need to ensure high survey response rate if you want the results to reflect the reality. 

Smart employee survey design includes some planning, but also simple to answer and conduct. Follow these best practices to make great employee surveys your employees will find easy to answer. 

Conduct employee surveys with your goal in mind 

First and foremost, plan your employee survey. Do not just conduct it for the sake of it but have clear goals in mind. What are you trying to achieve? Do you want to get to the bottom of low productivity? Do you want to improve your company culture? Are you trying to enhance employee retention? Depending on your goals, your questions should differ 

Keep surveys short 

To ensure higher response rate, make your surveys short. Nobody will want to answer a survey that takes long. Instead, opt for employee surveys that take approximately 5 minutes to answer. Moreover, emphasize the duration of the survey to your employees to increase chances of them answering it. 

📗 If you want to conduct longer employee surveys, you must incentivize your employees to answer! Offer them points in your internal employee recognition software or offer them coupons to their favorite coffee shop upon submitting the survey. Most importantly, explain what your goals are so your employees know they are not filling out the survey in vain! 

employee surveys incentives

Make surveys anonymous and its results confidential 

It goes without saying that employee surveys should be anonymous, and the results should be confidential. Without these conditions, your employees may not want to answer your questions, or they might not answer them truthfully. 

Use neutral statements in questions 

You should avoid using positive or negative statements in your employee surveys. For example, instead of asking your employees: 

  • How truthful is this statement: “My manager and I have a great relationship.” 

Make this your question: 

  • On a scale from one to five, how would you grade a relationship between you and your manager? 

This allows you to get the most accurate answers without your own implication of a “desirable” answer. 

Use clear terms in questions 

You are probably aware of the necessity to use clear terms in your employee surveys. Therefore, avoid complicated sentences and words that your employees might not understand. Moreover, avoid questioning two items at once – your surveys should be short, but nevertheless clear.  

For example, instead of this question: 

  • I think that my compensation and benefits are great in this company. 

Split it into two pieces – asking about compensation and benefits separately. If you do not, you might not get a good insight into your employees’ opinion. 

📗 In the end, check out these 16 Questions Employees Use to Evaluate Their Employers. They will help you improve the state of your employee experience and provide useful questions you, as an employer, can ask yourself. Let the practice of surveying enter your workplace!