What’s more important than having some great questions to ask your employees? You got it – actively using the results. A common mistake many organizations make is going to great lengths to measure engagement or satisfaction once a year but failing to do anything of significance with the information before the next survey comes around. Not only is this a waste of resources and energy, it’s can be more damaging to measure engagement and not take action than to not measure engagement at all. The follow-up and action planning template is a great way to get a quick pulse on how employees view and experience the activity that is taking place around a survey which you’ve previously conducted within your company culture. It also gives insight into corrective action around the communication of results, quality of action planning and further dialogue surrounding results.
Customizing your survey
You might find that the template we’ve designed for you has too many or too few questions. If that’s the case, feel free to edit the template by removing, adding or re-wording any questions which don’t work for you. Below are some tips on how to get the best results when customizing your survey. You might also like to add the action planning questions onto another survey which measures a specific part of engagement.
Food for thought
- Aim to create a clear purpose for each of the questions you ask. If you aren’t going to use the data for something specific then delete the question.
- Similarly, keep your questions actionable. Don’t lose sight of the fact that we are aiming at sustainable behavior change by actioning the results from the survey. While some questions are interesting, if they don’t yield actionable results then exclude them.
- Most people skim survey questions and don’t process them deeply. When writing your own questions, make sure they’re in plain English and use common, easy to understand words.
- Our template contains statements which people either agree or disagree with. If you want to change the question type then make sure the scale you use is also adjusted. For example, the question, “Do you like working at company x?”, is a closed question which warrants using a categorical ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ scale. If you reword the question to be the following statement, “Company x is a great place to work”, a strongly disagree to strongly agree scale would be appropriate using scale rating question type .
- Try not to ask multiple questions that measure the same idea or are repetitive. While you might think this is a great way to be sure that you’re getting the truth from people, as a respondent it’s downright annoying. Remember, people are extremely time poor, so don’t take any more of their time than is absolutely necessary.
- Try to keep the number of questions below 20. While there are varied opinions about the optimum number of questions for a survey, there is always a balance. Once you hit the 20 question mark, survey fatigue can start to kick in which means people are less inclined to finish and will most likely start to rate the experience negatively.
- This survey template focuses on asking employees about their views on the wider company culture and observations outside of their own personal experience. The questions are worded in such a way that employees are describing what they see around them and how they believe ‘things get done around here’.
- Surveying on the wider culture is quite different to asking about personal engagement which is more focused on the employee’s feelings specific to them rather than what they observe around them. The wider views someone has based on what they observe are less likely to change from day to day. Employee engagement, from personal experience, however, is likely to fluctuate depending on what’s happening at your company and how it directly impacts individual employees.
- If you’re more interested in shifting the culture and experiences employees have, use this template. If you’re more interested in how your employees are feeling based on their personal experience, use the ‘Follow up and Action planning - Personal Experience’ survey template.
- When setting up your survey, you can choose to make the survey anonymous or open. The benefit of anonymized data is people can feel more comfortable sharing their honest opinion and it’s probable that you’ll see higher take up. However, it means we’re only able to provide you with overall data which is not personally identifiable. If you want anonymity but also want to identify trends in certain groups, we suggest sending the survey as ‘Anonymous’ but adding in relevant questions about location, department etc to the template to get a more detailed breakdown around the results. It is best to add these questions as a drop down list and to make the questions optional as an identifiable group with less than 4 members cannot be classed as anonymous. Keep in mind – if you ask too many identifying questions, you might make it possible to identify individuals. Only ask the questions you really need to!