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    Online Surveys: Ask the Right Questions

    Learn how to ask the right questions when you create online surveys. Too many times, questions are not specific enough for people to answer. Think about how many times you have asked your family what they want for dinner. The answers you often receive are quite oblivious such as food, chocolate cake, or I don’t care. The better way to ask this question is would you like chicken or steak for dinner. Now, you will actually receive answers to your question. This is the same approach you need when creating online surveys.

    Employees or customers may not answer the way you think if you do not ask the right questions with your online surveys.

    The questions should be short and give your participants multiple choice questions, yes or no questions, or rating questions. This way you know they will have to answer with one of these responses, which will give you better and more precise answers while taking your online surveys.

    Consider the idea of asking your employees in the online surveys, how to improve the break room. If you ask just how can we improve the break room and leave an empty comment box, you will be very surprised at the results you will receive. You have left the answer open and your employees may not come up with the same answers that are in your mind. You may have thought of a microwave, comfortable chairs, doughnuts for breakfast, or even offer reading material. Your employees may be thinking, big screen TV, sofa, or other products.

    The same goes for all the questions. You need to do your best to get the answers you want without allowing the participants to go off on their own. You can always offer a comment box for other suggestions, which will allow them to offer other ideas, but you will have obtained the results you actually want.

    Do not ask questions that have nothing to do with your reason to create online surveys. If you are concentrating on the break room, do not ask questions about the work environment, the parking facilities, benefits or other factors. If you were on the other hand, asking a variety of questions on different areas of the company, then these questions would be fine. Alternatively, it is best to address one area in a short survey instead of several areas in a longer survey.

    If you have yes or no questions, provide a comment box or even multiple-choice answers that go along with the question on your online surveys. Such as, did you say no because and list a few choice and the same for answering yes. You should also use an “other” option in case the answer they need is not present.

    It is okay in most cases to ask about gender and age as long as you never ask the participants to reveal their name. You can easily explain the reason you need to know the gender and age such as, if you are looking to how people in your company are being treated by co-workers due to age or gender.

    View our samples surveys page for examples of surveys and survey questions.

    Creating Online Surveys
    Conducting an Employee Satisfaction Survey

    About Author

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    Phil Cleave

    Phil is part of the Content team at SmartSurvey and has over 20 years experience in the PR and Comms sector writing for Tech Companies.

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