Employee satisfaction surveys are an essential tool for any workplace. They give valuable insights into your workforce and a range of useful metrics so that you can make changes. In the modern workplace, particularly as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to create disruption and health and wellbeing issues, they are even more important than ever before.
According to a survey by Leadership IQ, more than a third of companies don’t regularly survey their employees.
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What is employee satisfaction and why do we measure it
The term “employee satisfaction” describes whether or not employees are happy and fulfilled and having their needs met in the workplace. Employee satisfaction is strongly linked to a range of performance metrics in the workplace, including morale, productivity, employee engagement, the ability to meet goals, cost savings, employee retention, customer satisfaction and more.
Employees are more likely to be satisfied at work if they feel that the employer cares about their health and wellbeing, values their opinions, and wants to provide them with a great workplace.
Generally speaking, employee satisfaction can help you find out how healthy your organization is – is it somewhere people are happy to work? If satisfaction is low or otherwise has room for improvement, the company can take steps to resolve any issues to boost the satisfaction score.
When employees don’t like their jobs, they aren’t fully productive. In addition, their attitudes can affect the morale of their peers, which can continue to perpetuate low levels of satisfaction. Not only that, they’ll scare off your new recruits or give your company a bad name, so you can’t attract the top talent in your industry in the first place.
And when employees show up to a job they don’t like every day, it’s hard to hide that attitude from customers.
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How to evaluate employee satisfaction
There are several common ways that companies evaluate their employees’ satisfaction. These include:
1. Surveying employees
There are different types of surveys you can send, but this is a great place to start to determine how your team members feel. The feedback that you collect can provide insights into what it is like to work in your organization and give you data that can be used to implement changes. You can evaluate a range of different aspects of life at the company that employees may or may not be satisfied with, such as career progression, training and development opportunities, workplace benefits, health and safety, communication, teamwork, leadership, goal setting and more.
2. Have face-to-face meetings
If you want to know how people are feeling, sometimes it can be as simple as having a conversation and asking. You can do this either by having one-on-one consultations or meeting with employees in safe groups. These sessions give an opportunity to raise issues in a private way.
3. See the workplace for yourself
Sometimes management can be unaware of what is happening in the workplace because they are removed from it – working on a different floor of the building or in another location. If you want to know what is happening, sometimes it can pay to quietly observe what the workplace is like. Are people smiling and happy? Do people look miserable? Are people speaking to one another professionally and respectfully? This gives you a sample of a day in the life of employees at your company.
4. Include exit interviews
When staff depart the organization, there can be a number of reasons why. Quite often, employees leave because they’ve been unhappy with their job. An exit interview is a good way to find out what made an employee leave. This can give you some clues about workplace cultural issues that may need to be rectified.
The role of employee satisfaction surveys and why you need one
An employee satisfaction survey is a series of questions sent to employees asking for their insights into different aspects of their work life and how they find their work environment.
Employee satisfaction surveys are considered one of the best possible tools for human resource departments and management to use to understand the organization’s health.
When you use employee satisfaction surveys you can get an accurate picture of what it is like for employees to work in your company, including the morale and mood. By using employee satisfaction surveys you can identify any issues that may affect your workplace culture and make any adjustments that are necessary to improve things and keep your employees happy.
Benefits of a job satisfaction survey
- Being able to retain top employees
- Having data to make improvements and therefore improve company growth
- Not making the same costly mistakes over and over
- Identifying whether or not you have a toxic workplace culture
- Identify how motivated your employees are
- Identifying risks
- Improving business practices
- Happier customers.
The best 30 employee satisfaction survey questions
Your employee satisfaction survey questions should cover how workers feel about management, workplace culture, and the actual role they perform in the company. Write in plain language, avoiding jargon, so you have the best chance of getting honest and useful answers from your employees.
These are the employee satisfaction survey questions we recommend that you can use as a template:
Organizational culture and workplace employee satisfaction survey
1. Do you enjoy our workplace culture?
2. How likely are you to recommend our company as a great place to work to your family and friends?
3. Do you feel you have all the resources you need to do your job successfully?
4. Are you inspired by the company?
5. What improvements would you make, if any, to have a better workplace?
6. Do you feel safe at work?
Information and employee satisfaction survey
7. Do you have a clear understanding of the company’s objectives?
8. Do you understand how your role contributes to the company’s success?
9. Do you feel you have involvement in decisions that affect your work?
10. Do you feel that you are able to contribute ideas?
11. Do you feel you are informed about what happens at the company?
Relationship with supervisor - employee satisfaction survey
12. Do you feel that your manager is invested in the team’s success?
13. Does your manager clearly communicate expectations?
14. Do you feel supported by your manager?
15. Do you feel that senior managers are in touch with what happens on the ground?
16. Does your manager inspire and encourage you to do your best?
Teamwork and employee satisfaction survey
17. Do you feel connected to your colleagues?
18. Do you feel safe at work?
19. Have you ever felt bullied, harassed or discriminated against?
20. Does your team work well together?
Job satisfaction and employee satisfaction survey
21. Are you satisfied with your career development opportunities at this company?
22. Do you have a clear career path at this company?
23. Do you enjoy your role?
24. Do you find your work meaningful?
25. Do you think you will still be working here in two years?
26. Are you proud to say you work at this company?
27. Are you happy to come to work every day?
28. Do you go out of your way to achieve above and beyond what is expected of you?
29. If you resigned tomorrow, why would that be?
30. Do you feel valued at work?
These sample employee satisfaction survey questions can be amended and adapted to suit the specifics of your company and its operating context.
Types of employee satisfaction surveys
There are different types of job satisfaction surveys that you can run. The main types are:
1. A standard survey
This is a questionnaire on employee satisfaction in an organization you can send annually or at different intervals through the year, asking a range of questions. The first survey lets you establish a baseline. Following up later and asking the same questions lets you see if there is any movement in either direction – have things improved or have they gotten worse? You should send these questions to the whole organization, not just a random sample of employees.
2. 360-degree surveys
These are generally targeted at managers and ask questions of a range of people around the manager, including people they report to, their own direct reports and colleagues. It helps to give a picture of what the manager is like to work with, depending on your relationship with them.
3. Pulse surveys
Pulse surveys are generally not very long and are sent out at regular intervals to gauge how people are feeling at a particular point in time. They are especially useful when there are scenarios like change management initiatives or a crisis to see how staff satisfaction has been affected.
How to conduct employee satisfaction surveys
When you’re conducting an employee satisfaction survey, to make it successful, you should take a number of steps.
1. Ensure anonymity
When your job satisfaction questionnaire is strictly confidential, people will feel they are safe to be candid and provide honest opinions. Without this, the feedback gathered won’t be so useful.
Read more: Anonymous employee survey.
2. Include a mix of qualitative and quantitative data
This will enable you to get a better picture of what is happening in your organization and allows people to give answers with specific examples. You can use a template that gives a mix of these.
3. Commit to ongoing surveys
There’s no point surveying your employees once if you want to get meaningful data. Too often, companies treat this as a box-ticking exercise… don’t fall into that trap. Multiple surveys will let you compare data to see if your efforts are having an impact.
4. Implement changes based on feedback
You’re asking about employee satisfaction so that you can learn from employees and make changes to the work environment and corporate culture. If you don’t actively act on this feedback, it will seem hollow when you ask for feedback in the future.
5. Share results with your team
Transparency is important. When you get the results, share them with your employees – even if the news is bad. This way, they will know that you value what they have told you and that you’re serious about using the information to make changes for the better.
Tools for conducting employee satisfaction surveys
There are different ways you can conduct employee satisfaction surveys. Determine what is best for your organization.
1. Traditional forms
You can send your employees paper-based surveys or PDFs/Word files that they can fill in and return. There are many templates you can find online to use. This method involves manual data input and calculations at the end to get the results.
2. Online survey tools
There are a number of different survey tools on the market, such as SurveyMonkey or Qualtrics, that organizations can use and email links to their employees to fill in the survey. This system relies on employees noticing the email and acting on it.
3. Use DeskAlerts
DeskAlerts is an internal communications software system that lets you send employee satisfaction survey questions to your employees via pop-up notifications on their desktops or to their smartphones via an app.
The DeskAlerts surveys can be completely anonymous. You can also send them to targeted audience segments, for example, your sales team or employees who work in a particular office. The data is available to see in real time and you can send reminders to people to complete it until it is done.
There’s no chance that your employees will miss the survey because of the intrusive nature of the system – it will appear in a way that can’t be ignored. You can also save time by creating employee satisfaction survey templates ahead of time to reuse later.
Employee satisfaction surveys are a useful tool to improve your business practices and transform your workplace into a happy, healthy and cohesive one. Get in touch with our team of experts today to find out more about how DeskAlerts can help you measure your employee satisfaction and more.
1. What is a good real-time employee satisfaction survey tool?
A good real-time employee satisfaction survey tool is one that takes little effort for employees to respond to and can show you results instantly. DeskAlerts fits these criteria as it is sent directly to employees in a way they can’t miss, and you can see their answers via the statistics panel.
2. Why are employee satisfaction surveys important?
Employee satisfaction surveys are important because they help you to improve your workplace and make it somewhere that employees are happy to work. Conversely, when employees hate their jobs, they’re likely to leave and won’t be doing their best work.
3. Are employee engagement surveys or employee satisfaction surveys truly anonymous?
This depends on the system and settings that you use. You also need to be careful about the employee satisfaction survey questions that you ask because you may be able to identify particular employees based on what information they provide.
4. Do employee satisfaction surveys benefit or harm an employee?
If used for their intended purpose, employee satisfaction surveys will only serve to benefit employees as you can use the information to improve their working conditions. On the other hand, if results are used to punish employees for negative feedback, you’ll only erode the happiness and trust of your staff further.
5. What are the five components of job satisfaction?
The five main components of job satisfaction are:
- Having upward mobility in a role – knowing there is a career path within the company.
- Pay that reflects performance.
- Paid leave – including vacations and sick leave, as well as providing appropriate work/life balance to avoid burnout.
- Appropriate healthcare benefits.
- A workplace that is safe, friendly, supportive and social.