It’s 9:47 on a Tuesday morning. You and your colleagues are gathered in the conference room brainstorming how you are going to create the new employee study requested by the CEO. There have been some stirrings in the company about satisfaction levels, opportunities for improvement and a lack of corporate efficiency. But before contacting vendors for project quotes, it is important to consider a few issues.
While you may have a general idea of what you want, make sure that you have a clear understanding of your project’s purpose. Do you want to conduct a satisfaction study or an engagement study?
Employee engagement is defined as the heightened connection that employees associate with their jobs. This association influences them to apply additional effort for the company. The predecessor to engagement studies were employee satisfaction studies, which simply explored the question, “Is the employee satisfied with her job?” As satisfaction studies evolved, researchers realized that a significant piece of the puzzle was missing.
An employee can be satisfied with having a comfortably air-conditioned office, sufficient coffee supplies in the break room and a consistent paycheck. None of these items, however, leads the employee to apply additional, discretionary efforts to her job. She won’t necessarily work diligently to help the company meet its bottom line, if she is just satisfied with status quo. Thus, satisfaction is a limited measure.
In addition to the type of employee surveys you would like to conduct, think about the kind of information you want to see in the reports. The best way to answer, “What do we ask in the survey?” is to determine the information you want to obtain from the reports.
How are you going to distribute the survey to your employees? Are there staff members who do not use their email on a regular basis? If so, perhaps you should consider providing an email, paper and/or telephone option to accommodate all employees.
You might also consider if the survey should be conducted in multiple languages, the time of year it will be distributed, and how employees will be notified that the survey is on its way. Remember, the pre-survey communication effort is just as important as the survey itself.
The possibilities are quite extensive but with the right partner firm and a clear sense of direction, you will succeed!