Employee satisfaction survey: How to keep your finger on the office pulse

Employees look to you, the office manager, to keep the business running smoothly. Often behind the scenes but always available, it’s your responsibility to ensure employees are safe, sound, and satisfied. So, how exactly do you stay tuned into the feelings of every person at the company?

An employee satisfaction survey is a sure-fire way of assessing the needs of your workforce. Web-based and easy to create, pulse surveys are designed to give you a quick peek into the minds of your employees, helping you to anticipate worker needs and practically read their minds with a superhero-like ability.

But before you don your tights and cape, read on to learn how to craft an effective pulse survey that will leave a positive impact and equip you with the knowledge to make solid decisions that save the day.

1. STRATEGIZE YOUR PLAN OF ATTACK: Choose rating scales over yes/no questions

Yes/no responses may make employees feel that answering “no” will look like they’re betraying the company. Instead, use rating scales based on a 5- or 7-point system. This way, respondents won’t have to try to mold their response to a pre-written answer.

Try framing employee satisfaction survey questions like this:*

On a scale of 1 to 5, how would you rate the following (with 1 being “strongly disagree” and 5 “strongly agree”)?

  • I have access to the resources, office supplies, and marketing materials I need to do my job well.
  • The technology in the office (phone lines, printers, webcams, etc.) is functioning to my satisfaction.
  • The approved list of outside vendors and services meets my expectations.
  • Leadership does an excellent job of keeping employees up-to-date about issues that affect us.

Download our full e-book to learn how to be the hero in your office.

2. BROADLY SURVEY THE LAND: Provide a place for feedback

Get more from your employee engagement survey than data averages for each response. Provide opportunities for people to write suggestions and ideas or add context about why they chose a certain response.

Ask open-ended questions, such as:

  • What other issues not included in this survey need to be addressed at your company
  • What three things do you need to make your daily work life better or to improve your overall performance?
  • What are your suggestions for improving the company’s current tools and/or resources?

3. BE THERE IN GOOD TIMES AND BAD: Measure and follow up

Your job isn’t over once the results are in. Follow through by evaluating employee feedback and devising an action plan to improve satisfaction, engagement, and company culture.

Remember to:

  • Visualize and present the survey results to the rest of the office. Transparency and honesty will instill trust among staff members.
  • Share your plan to address feedback with everyone, and invite them to join any improvement initiatives they’re passionate about.
  • Vigilantly follow up and make any adjustments as needed.
  • Send ongoing employee engagement surveys often to avoid skewing trend-related data.

BUILD AN ARSENAL OF SUPPORT: Use satisfaction survey templates and tools

There are plenty of tools, templates, and software out there to help you craft the ultimate employee pulse survey. We’ve rounded up a few of the best surveys for your employees to take:

  1. TINYpulse is a paid tool that gives leaders a chance to receive employee feedback. Designed to improve performance and meet goals, it also offers a performance management feature that facilitates meetings between leadership and employees.
  2. Qualtrics is software that offers question types, survey templates, and fancy automation features to make your staff surveys slick and effective. It also helps you visualize and share the results.
  3. CultureAmp is a paid tool that makes it easy to run performance reviews, pulse checks, and culture index surveys. It has deep analytics features so managers can review results from employees at every stage of their life cycle at the company.
  4. SurveyMonkey is a survey platform that can scale-up to your company’s needs. It even has a cost-free “basic” account level, which allows up to 10 questions per survey.

Watch for potential worker satisfaction dangers without wasting another minute guessing what they need. Start by sending an employee satisfaction survey to become the hero your office needs.

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* “Employee Satisfaction Survey Questions,” 2013, Qualtrics Blog