by Laura Belyea, COO at Talivest
Whatever the size or scale of your business, employees will be at the heart of everything you do. Not only does it make good business sense, but a motivated and engaged workforce is one of the greatest assets you can have.
We know that listening to employees is vital for job satisfaction, retention and productivity. However, there is still a disconnect when it comes to putting this into practice. Which is why we’ve put together this five-step plan for create a successful employee survey.
If you want to get to the heart of your workforce and make a difference, read on.
Step 1: Get Senior Management on board
At the start of the process, bring together senior management and HR to understand what you want to achieve. This is also an opportunity to explain why it’s important for the business as a whole to conduct an employee survey, and the benefits it will bring.
Provide an overview of the logistics, timeframe and how you will report results. Unless this is your first employee survey, you should also have a benchmark for reference and comparison.
Step 2: Communicating to the Team
As any internal communications plan will tell you, communicating with colleagues is a sure-fire way to get them on board. Ahead of the survey, host a company meeting or send an email preparing them for the employee engagement survey. Remind team members that this is an opportunity for valuable feedback that will continue to make your company a great place to work.
Employees value honesty and transparency, so be clear on how you will measure and share feedback, and provide a results date for feedback.
Step 3: Distributing the Employee Survey
Once you’ve compiled your survey, find a professional resource for circulating this internally. Survey responses should be anonymous and it should be a priority to treat data in a private and professional manner.
Often, a barrier to honest employee survey feedback is the fear of being identified, so it’s important to be clear about anonymity.
Step 4: Analysis
Once the results are in, it’s time to dissect them and truly understand more about your internal culture and business as a whole.
Benchmark findings against previous years, other companies, and industry standards to have a source of comparison. This will help provide context too.
Consider the highlights to share with senior management, using your discretion around certain sensitivities. You may also wish to share recommendations or constructive feedback at the same time.
Before reporting the results internally, it’s important for them to be digested by senior management. After all for an employee survey to be effective, it must be listened to and acted upon.
With this in mind, what learnings will you take from this, and what new practices or workforce changes will you implement? Be clear on your key messages and learnings before publishing them.
Step 5: Communicating Feedback
You should aim to be fair and honest in your feedback, whilst striking a balance. Do share the successes… but also acknowledge areas that need improving. In the event that the feedback is overwhelmingly negative, address the fact that work needs to be done.
From the employee survey feedback, create a list of key areas you want to focus on as a business. How will you improve upon, address or change these areas to better serve the needs of your employees?
As a final thought, an internal survey is not a one-off event. This should be repeated on a regular basis, for ongoing listening, feedback and improvement.
An employee engagement survey is an important tool for understanding colleague feedback. But transparency, clarity and actionable results are important, and ultimately what employees are looking for.
About the author
Laura’s role is to successfully support the growth and strategy for Talivest, as well as provide product support with her expertise within the HR industry. Previously posts were director of HR & operations in Telefonica, Elizabeth Arden and ICON