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Can employee engagement surveys increase employment satisfaction?

January 22, 2011

By Denise Gredler, President, BestCompaniesAZ

Quick! What are your employee’s most pressing concerns, values and needs? Are they engaged in the mission, vision and values of the company? Do they have ideas that can help improve the bottom line?

If you hesitated in answering any of these questions, it might be time to implement a strategic and proven system – an employee engagement survey. Many managers find surveys a beneficial way to gauge the temperature of the climate of your company’s culture.

Companies who have a high level of employee engagement retain employees and the converse is also true.  Surveying employee engagement helps managers understand the expectations of employees and create an environment in which they can be successful.  Satisfied employees leads to satisfied customer base and thereby a more productive and profitable organization.

Most executives and managers know when employee dissatisfaction is peaking.  While they may know action is needed, they miss the mark on exactly what to do.  Creating an environment to increase customer and employee satisfaction and ultimately the bottom line is elusive for many companies.  Satisfaction or engagement surveys like the Gallup Q12 can help managers gain an understanding of the scope of dissatisfaction.

Here are a few questions to consider:

  • Why did the employee join the organization?
  • Which attributes are valued in leaders and employees?
  • Do employees consider leaving the organization?
  • What is the level of satisfaction with employee compensation?
  • How can employee satisfaction be enhanced? Ask if options such as flextime, telecommuting, employee recognition programs, etc. are important.
  • What can be done to increase your company’s customer service levels? Customer satisfaction? Customer loyalty, productivity, quality or profit.
  • What can be done to make the organization more competitive? Is it increasing employee satisfaction or engagement? Level of customer service? Productivity? Change in management?

It is important to not only distribute and collect surveys but to implement ideas and suggestions.  Creating a more engaged workforce is not a new idea; it is an old idea gaining traction.  Engaging and retaining the best and brightest employees is important to the bottom line which is why employers are asking for feedback via surveys.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 14, 2011 7:52 pm

    Workforce engagement surveys are fine to provide the appearance of interest. What really counts is what you do with them. Companies that are serious about engagement aren’t interested in some arbitrary score but what they need to do get real engagement. They will know it when they have it by the benefits in terms of creativity and profitability they see being delivered across the organisation.

    If you are interested in a process which really makes a sustainable difference have a look at the book Breaking the Mould by Peter Hunter.

  2. June 22, 2011 12:27 pm

    Thanks Denise, companies need whatever advice they can get on how to gain more value from the human talent they are already paying.

    I often wonder whether there isn’t some self-selection taking place with most surveys. Are the generally more disgruntled employees more likely to complete an employee satisfaction survey than those who are generally happy? One way to address it might be instead of Employee Engagement Surveys to conduct surveys that probe employees’ ideas for the company’s enhancement – something like your question: “What can be done to increase your company’s customer service levels? Customer satisfaction? Customer loyalty, productivity, quality or profit?” – disengaged employees won’t participate, highly engaged employees will. So if you ask your employees for strategic input your response level is your engagement measure.

    Of course, no survey can replace talking with, questioning and probing the thinking of employees face to face in open, non-defensive ways. This approach may not deliver glossy reports illustrated with powerful graphics, but you will have a deeper knowledge of what is really happening.

    David Lapin
    Author: Lead By Greatness

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