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    Essential Employee Engagement Questions



    Are you struggling to generate the engagement levels you need? Or maybe you’re finding that no matter how many employee surveys you run, the feedback you’re seeing is just not revealing anything valuable about the company issues that could be causing this?

    Well, it’s most likely because you're not asking your staff the right questions or asking them frequently enough to obtain an ongoing stream of helpful feedback.  

    One of the most effective ways to increase engagement with your employee survey is to regularly solicit feedback from your teams. According to a study from Salesforce, employees who feel that their voices are heard at work are nearly five times more likely to deliver their best performance.  

    Employee pulse surveys, which are much shorter than the traditional employee survey, is a good example of a more frequent method of obtaining this feedback. For more information about how it can be implemented and corporate scenarios where it is most valuable you might like to visit our employee pulse survey page.  

    However, whether you’re conducting an employee survey or a shorter employee pulse version of this survey, you still need to be asking your employees the right questions, if you’re to gain the greatest value from running them.  

    So, keep reading to find out why you should be implementing these surveys and how to carry one out, before we reveal our top 25 questions to include in your next survey.  

    What should be the aim of your Employee Engagement Survey Questions?

    The main purpose of your employee engagement survey questions is to deepen your understanding about what drives engagement within your organisation, whilst identifying any factors that could be holding it back.  

    By giving your employees a voice and the opportunity to share their suggestions and concerns, employee engagement surveys can allow managers to better track engagement levels and take any necessary actions to improve them. Ultimately, employee engagement surveys help boost engagement levels and can provide greater clarity about how to move your company forward.  

    How to carry out your Employee Engagement Survey

    If you’ve never conducted an employee survey before, the following steps will get you started: 

    1.Measure where you currently stand 

    Before you do anything else, it’s essential to know where your company currently stands in terms of its engagement levels. 

    You can do this quickly by collecting employee feedback to the following simple questions: 

    • On a scale of 1 to 10, how engaged  do you think you are? 
    • If you you could, what’s the one thing that you would change about your job? 
    • Would you change your job for higher pay?

    Although this is unlikely to give you the most detailed overview, it's a good start, which will allow you to determine the general sentiments of your employees and enable you to begin work on setting clearer objectives.

    2.Get input from senior management  

    Next, you need to be communicating with senior and departmental managers about the current state of engagement. From here you need to involve them in the entire process, in order to determine how you will set about increasing employee engagement levels.

    3.Set your goals

    Work with your managers to establish some clear objectives about what you’re looking to achieve through running your employee engagement survey. 

    Potential objectives could include: 

    • Identifying ways of increasing employee engagement levels throughout the organisation
    • Determining ways to improve employee retention 
    • Examining ways in which to improve your employee net promoter score (eNPS) 
    • Determining how to transform a poor company culture  

    Depending on where you currently stand and the biggest obstacles you’re facing, you need to decide on a set of clearly defined goals for your survey. 

    4. Develop an essential list of questions to ask every time 

    With your objectives firmly top of mind, create a list of closed and open-ended questions, which you will ask employees at regular intervals. 

    These could anything from questions to obtain views about your managers and company culture, to questions that gauge opinion about opportunities for personal growth or which measure overall happiness. 

    5. Identify the best way to conduct your survey and share its details 

    How do you plan to send out your employee engagement survey? 

    While annual surveys are still popular, you may opt for more regular ‘pulsing’, or a mix of the two.   

    Once you've decided, you need to share these details with your employees. And once you've received their survey feedback, you'll need to share it with all your staff and act on it by working with them to try to identify solutions, as this is the only way to truly foster an engaging environment. 

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    25 great Employee Engagement Survey Questions for you to use

    We cannot overstate how important it is to include the right survey questions. Not only will they ensure you can obtain constructive feedback but will also keep you on track for achieving your goals.  

    So, to help you we’ve outlined some questions for you below and split these up into five essential categories. These range from obtaining feedback about employee satisfaction and management performance, to questions which measure opinion about staff retention, company growth and opportunities for personal growth.  

    Employee satisfaction 

    Asking employees about their job satisfaction can provide a great deal of insight into their overall levels of engagement.  It can also help to reveal any underlying problems that could be disengaging them from other team members. 

    Here are some questions to help get you started: 

    1. On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you at work? 

    This is a good direct question to start with, that will provide a top-level overview of employee satisfaction. By asking it regularly, it can enable you to track and measure staff morale over time.  

    2. Would you recommend someone to work here? 

    Another useful question, which can reveal just how satisfied a person is with their job. Even if their answers are not what you hoped for, it can give you the opportunity to dig deeper and find out why they feel this way, so you’re in a better position to make the changes you need to improve their contentment with their job.  

    3. Have you got a clear understanding of your career or promotion path? 

    A Gallup poll found that employees who get the opportunity to continuously develop are twice as likely to spend their career with their present company than those that don’t. See how your own workforce answers this question. And if their responses are indecisive, you may want to start offering more opportunities for development, to prevent larger numbers of people from leaving your company. 

    4. On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate your work-life balance? 

    To remain productive and engaged, employees need to have a good balance between their work and personal life, which is an area that has become increasingly important to staff in recent years. This question can help reveal if your company has got this balance right.   

    5. Hypothetically, if you were to quit tomorrow, what would be the reasons behind your decision? 

    From reasons such as feeling under-valued or dissatisfaction with company communications or a lack of transparency. The responses from this question can reveal a lot about what your employees are thinking and whether they are looking to stay long term, or if there are more underlying issues that are driving them to look elsewhere for work. 

    6. Are you satisfied with the benefits you’re receiving? 

    Employee perks also have an important role to play in determining overall job satisfaction levels. They also help in attracting new hires towards the company.  Asking employees this question can help to ensure you’re keeping up with your competitors.

    Questions about management 

    It’s also essential to include some questions that will gauge employee sentiment of your leadership. 

    No one knows a manager better than those they manage. And since the leadership plays a crucial role in engaging the workforce, you need to make ensure they are nurturing your employees effectively. 

    Here are some questions to help you with this:  

    7. Do you feel valued at work? 

    According to a white paper report from Servicenow for most employees the need to be valued and heard is even more important than their actual role. So, this can be a useful question to gauge how valued workers in your organisation are feeling. 

    8. How often do you receive recognition from your manager? 

    Given that as many as 58% of employees said more recognition would help improve their engagement levels, this is a great question to ask.  
    While morale can quickly drop among teams that can go several weeks before receiving any recognition, those that feel the most appreciated tend to be the most motivated and hardworking.  

    9. Did you receive any praise the last time you completed a big project? 

    Feeling valued at work is another huge motivator. This question will help to reveal how well your company’s leadership is monitoring and recognising the major achievements in your business, so you can put in steps to improve this, if it isn’t already happening.  

    Employee retention 

    While it’s possible to measure staff retention rates through a number of different variables, it’s better if you can get an earlier and more detailed picture of what your employees are thinking through survey questions.  

    Here are some questions to get you started.   

    10. Do you think you'll be able to reach your full potential here? 

    Most employees want to work for a company that will help nurture their growth. Generally, the more opportunities for personal growth an organisation can offer, the better its staff retention rates are likely to be.  

    11. If you were given the chance, would you reapply for your current job? 

    At first glance, this question can seem a little strange. However, it can help reveal whose is the most satisfied with their job, as generally the happier the employee, the more likely they would be to reapply for their same position, in contrast to an unhappy individual.  

    12. Do you see yourself working here one year from now? 

    This is another useful question, as it can be a good indicator of the overall morale in your company and your ability to retain staff. It can also give you valuable time to make some positive changes, if many of your employees have stated their intention to leave within the next year.

    13. Do you believe your feedback is taken seriously by your leadership team? 

    No one wants to work at a place where they are ignored. When leaders don’t take feedback or suggestions seriously, it can appear that they are more hierarchical than horizontal in their approach and at worst not as committed as they should be to making improvements. This question can reveal if you’re truly listening to your employees, and if not, can give you a chance to improve these communication channels, which could be anything from implementing an ideas box on your intranet to introducing focus groups to discuss different topics.  

    Questions about company culture

    Studies from organisations such as Denison Consulting reveal that there is a significant correlation between strong company cultures and engagement levels. So, it’s a good area to explore through survey questions, with some of the examples we’ve highlighted below.  

    14. Do you feel your management team is transparent? 

    According to a study by Forbes, management transparency is the top factor in determining employee happiness. Use this question to assess how well your leaders are doing when it comes to communicating information to your employees.  

    15. Can you recite our organisation's values off by heart? 

    This is a valuable question, as it can reveal how well your employees know your organisation’s vision, mission, and cultural values. If a high percentage get this right, then that’s great. Alternatively, if only a lower number can recite your company’s values, you need to do more work to connect and engage your employees with your overall mission.  

    16. What three words would you use to describe our company culture? 

    Fun, antagonistic, supportive? Ideally, you would be hoping for these words to closely align with the core values of your business. Once you have gathered your feedback, you could use the results to identify ways to strengthen and improve your culture. 

    17. On a scale of 1 to 10, how comfortable are you about providing upwards feedback to your supervisor? 

    The workplace environment should never be hostile or suppressive. Employees should feel comfortable providing feedback to their supervisors, so that they can continue to offer valuable suggestions for improvements. 

    18. Do you feel like co-workers respect one another here? 

    You want to build a culture where people respect and support one another. This question allows you to dig under the surface to find out how your employees truly feel about each other.  And if they’re not supporting one another, it can enable you to start planning some effective team building activities to improve this.  

    19. Do you believe that we genuinely live and breathe our organisational values? 

    Do your employees feel like your organisation’s values are just meaningless words on the walls? Or that your leaders and the rest of their colleagues are living out those values. Either way, this is a great question to find that out and make any improvements you need to make. 

    20. Does our executive team contribute to a positive work culture? 
    Are the leaders in your organisation fostering a positive or negative work environment? This survey question can enable you to dig deeper to find out how well your leaders are upholding your organisation’s culture. 

    21. Is your organisation a fun place to work? 

    Given the many hours employees spend at work, it’s important that they can have a bit of fun along the way to help to relieve stress and keep them motivated and engaged. So, use this question to see if you’re getting the balance right, or if you need to introduce any more tactics to keep your staff happy.

    Personal growth 

    Finally, it’s also important to ask your employees about their personal growth in the organisation. 

    The following questions can help you with this.  

    22. Which new responsibilities, if any, would you like to take on? 

    According to research only about 29% of employees are happy with the career advancement opportunities available to them. So, it’s obviously an area that’s important for them and most would like greater support with. With this question, you can ensure your employees are getting ample growth opportunities, and if they want it, which responsibilities they would like to take on to stretch them further.  

    23. Are there any types of new projects you would like to be involved in? 

    In another study a third of all respondents cited “boredom” as the main reason for quitting a job. So, in addition to asking them about any extra responsibilities, it wouldn’t hurt to ask your employees if there were any projects, they’d like to be involved in. 

    24. Are there any new skills you would like to develop? 

    This is a good question for uncovering if your employees are gaining sufficient opportunities to develop the skills they need to excel in their careers. You can ask them about any new skills they’d like to develop, which if they align with your broader business objectives, you could provide them with the resources to do so. 

    25. Are you receiving ample enough learning opportunities in your current job? 

    You also need to ensure your employees are getting enough opportunities to grow professionally and achieve their personal career goals. So, this is a great question to finish your survey with.  

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    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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