As a survey company we’re often asked questions about survey practices: What is the best method to conduct surveys? How can we get the greatest possible response rate? Should we use a survey company, or should we try to employ a self-use online survey service? The questions we receive are many and varied.
While we have extensive survey experience and expertise, we chose to conduct a survey to identify employee survey best practices at organizations we don’t conduct surveys for. The findings of the survey validated our own survey experience and produced interesting and useful information and insight about employee surveys.
This informative article includes the main element Lessons Learned and Actions for You to Consider from Quantisoft’s Survey About Employee Survey Practices. Survey Sea Please contact Howard Deutsch at hdeutsch@Quantisoft.com for the total Employee Survey Best Practices Report, like the survey findings, data and verbatim comments.
1. Kinds of Employee Surveys — Participating organizations are using a wide variety of employee surveys to gather information and insight to make better decisions and making informed changes. Kinds of surveys they conduct include employee satisfaction/engagement, employee benefits opinion, employee turnover, sales force opinion, IT customer care, business risk assessment and other surveys.
2. Survey Frequency — The most typical frequency for conducting surveys is annually.
3. Satisfaction with Survey Companies vs. Self-use Survey Services — Organizations that primarily use survey companies are far more satisfied making use of their survey process than organizations primarily using self-service online survey services. The reasons survey companies are providing greater satisfaction and value than self-service survey services are the expertise and experience provided, receiving survey reports quickly without the need to make time to generate graphs and other reports in-house, objective analysis of survey results, more give attention to implementing changes, greater support and involvement from management and other factors.
4. Effectiveness of Survey Practices — Organizations primarily using survey companies rate the effectiveness of key survey practice significantly more than organizations using self-service online survey services. The survey practices with the largest gaps in effectiveness ratings are receiving support from managers, producing timely useful reports, communicating survey findings, developing implementation plans, analyzing survey results and achieving results from surveys.
5. Significance of Survey Practices — Survey respondents identified the “most” important survey practices as keeping responses anonymous, conducting follow-up surveys, time taken to perform survey and analysis of survey data.
6. Survey Response Period and Rate — Responding organizations strive to reach a top survey response rate. A 2-week survey response period is most popular. A third week typically generates an increased response rate. 60% of responding organizations routinely have a survey response rate of 60% or greater.
7. Primary Survey Approach — Online/Web surveys are probably the most often-used approach. Organizations are learning methods to end the usage of paper surveys, even for employees that do not use computers to perform their job. 70% of responding organizations use Online/Web surveys as their primary approach, 20% use paper surveys as their primary approach and 10% use Online/Web surveys supplemented with paper surveys as their primary approach.
8. Reasons for Conducting Employee Surveys — The most truly effective reasons for conducting employee surveys include identifying performance improvement opportunities, assessing employee satisfaction and engagement levels and trends, part of ongoing measurement process and identifying factors behind employee turnover.
9. Surveys Achieving Their Objectives — Some organizations are achieving very strong results from surveys while others are falling short. Key factors for achieving survey objectives include management support for conducting surveys and implementing changes, using a survey company and executing well on all of the survey practices. Surveys generate significant quantitative and qualitative results when designed and executed well, followed up by effective analysis and implementation of changes identified by surveys.
10. Using Normative Benchmarking Data — Survey respondents choose to benchmark their survey results with survey results from other organizations. However, they’re not comfortable using benchmarking data unless they may be sure the info enables “apples-to-apples” comparisons. Similarity of organizations being benchmarked, similarity of survey questions/wording, common time period for when survey data was collected and other factors are very important to make valid benchmarking comparisons.
11. Survey Best Practices — Knowing and consistently following best practices is essential for successfully conducting surveys and achieving results. Organizations that fail to follow best practices for all survey practices fail to reach the total potential results from surveys.