To begin with, all systematic employee feedback exercises ought to be anonymous. If not, then you simply won’t get the sort of usable data that you need to make informed decisions about your organisation. Simply put, people will tend to say what they think is what ought to be said when they’re asked in an open way, such as in team meetings. Therefore, anonymised questionnaire surveys should make the feedback senior managers receive more honest, pointing out the good and the bad in equal measure. According to WorkBuzz, an employee feedback platform that runs anonymously online, businesses that gain accurate information about their workforce are much better placed to make the right calls. What do company directors need to consider when planning an employee feedback exercise? Read on to find out.
Most employers want to know how engaged their employees are in their jobs. This is because the more engaged workers are in their work, the more productive they are. Conversely, low rates of reported employee engagement will tend to indicate that an organisation isn’t running as productively as it could. This is a key thing to measure in all businesses, large and small, since it will inform decision-makers about where best to allocate their resources to make their firm more productive.
All organisations have blockages whether they are caused by ill-thought-through policies or by procedures that once worked but are no longer fit for purpose. Unfortunately, middle managers can often stick to outdated methods because it is what they know. However, frontline workers may have a different view about what needs to be done to make the business function better at an operational level. An employee feedback survey is an ideal opportunity for senior executives to reach over the heads of middle strata of management and find out what is going on further down the hierarchy.
Do your workers buy into your firm’s brand identity? Do they share its values and espouse them to people they talk to? Are they giving customers and other stakeholders a warped view of what your company is about? Should you alter your brand to meet current market trends and social perspectives? These are all reasonable questions to ask and to want to find answers to. A workforce survey will help you to figure out just how well your brand identity sits among employees.
Understanding how satisfied, or otherwise, employees are in their work isn’t just about determining whether you need to pay them more, offer greater incentives or make the office a more engaging place to come in. This is because it is also about your bottom line. Workplaces with lower rates of job satisfaction tend to see more staff turnover. Therefore, if you would like to keep your recruitment and retention overheads down, finding out where you stand with job satisfaction is a very important aspect of any staff feedback exercise.
Good employee questionnaires and surveys may be anonymous but this doesn’t mean you won’t want to work out why you are getting the feedback you do. To this end, demographic analysis of survey results can be very useful. It may inform you that older workers are more satisfied than younger ones or vice-versa, for instance. Do women in your organisation feel as valued as men? These are important questions to ask if you are committed to equal opportunities in the workplace.
Diversity and Inclusion
Asking what your employees feel about diversity and inclusion is increasingly important among forward-thinking businesses. Most people now realise that diversity is a strength because it means valuing that people think about the same problems in different ways, offering creative solutions in many cases. To achieve this, most organisations seek an inclusive culture that embraces everyone’s perspectives. However, you won’t necessarily achieve this unless people feel engaged in the diversity agenda. Asking open questions about this is important if you want to fully demonstrate your commitment in this area.
Finally, it should be mentioned that the wellbeing of employees is vitally important, especially their emotional wellbeing, is something that all employee feedback exercises ought to address nowadays. This is because overly stressed workers will often lead to greater absenteeism and loss of productivity. It can also cause reputational harm as you might develop unwanted notoriety as an uncaring employer. Remember that if people report feelings of stress that this can come from being under-challenged in their roles just as much as being overworked, so be sure to explore employee wellbeing from all angles.