Conducting an annual employee engagement survey can equip you with valuable information about the engagement level of your staff along with insights for improving employee satisfaction. In conjunction with shorter pulse surveys, conversations, and stay interviews, detailed surveys provide a measure of employee engagement that can help you direct your efforts for growth and reduce high employee turnover.
To help you collect employee feedback as effectively as possible, we’ve listed 15 employee engagement survey questions to include, along with the insights that each question provides into the people’s experience.
Employee engagement survey questions will naturally vary from one company to the next. However, there are certain core questions that are important for every organization. For maximum benefit, you might consider using a 5-point Likert scale ranging from strongly disagree to strongly agree. You might also include some open-ended questions and a field for additional comments next to each question to collect qualitative as well as quantitative data.
In addition to the employee survey questions we suggest, you can include your own custom questions that touch on your organization’s strategic goals. It’s natural for employee engagement survey questions to change over time as you follow different metrics or new areas of interest arise.
Questions About Satisfaction
1. How do you feel about work right now?
Right out of the gate, this question is a great barometer of emotional well-being and employee happiness. It also gives you an immediate sense of whether employees in a particular role or department are feeling unhappy—indicating a broader problem that needs to be addressed.
To elicit honest feedback, provide graphics that might represent the employee’s current status and a field for qualitative feedback on the side. As the annual survey should always be anonymous, this is a great way to get constructive feedback about ways in which job satisfaction levels could be improved.
2. Do you feel proud to work for our organization?
This question assesses how people inside your organization view the external brand, as well as their level of affiliation with the brand and your business goals overall. If your employees are proud of the brand, this has a flow-on effect on customer service and performance outcomes.
If employees express some doubt about their feelings relating to the company, it might be that your organizational values are unclear or that your employees don’t feel their work contributes to these values.
3. Would you recommend our organization as a workplace?
This is about the work environment—both the physical work environment and company culture in general. If you’ve developed a positive work environment, your employees are more likely to recommend your company to others. If not, it’s better to find out while you have time to make improvements rather than wait for ex-employees to vent their frustrations on Glassdoor.
Some of the factors that employees might consider when answering these employee engagement survey questions include the pay rate and current benefits as well as their work-life balance and sense of enjoyment. It could also be affected by their relationship with managers and the sense that their feedback is heard and acted upon.
4. Do you enjoy working with your team?
Fellow team members have the power to bring each other up or pull them down. This is especially the case when it comes to employee engagement. According to research, one negatively motivated, “freeloading” employee has the potential to bring down a high-performing team.
When analyzing responses to the survey, look for employees that are mentioned in the comments as excellent or difficult people to work with. It may be that a certain employee deserves recognition or that an employee who creates problems needs to be directed to HR.
5. Do you think about looking for another job?
This question is an indicator of your employees’ current commitment to the company and should reflect your employee retention rate. If more than 60% of your employees are thinking about looking for another job, it’s time to look at your culture.
Generally, satisfied employees aren’t looking for work elsewhere unless they see little room for advancement or are unhappy with the level of pay. Providing a field for comments and conducting stay interviews can help you uncover motivations for turnover.
6. Do you have everything you need to do your job well?
If we think of engagement in terms of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, having the things that you need to do your job would have to come in at the base level. If employee feedback surveys show that staff members are under-resourced or lack the things they need to perform, this is the problem you need to address first before turning to other, fine-tuned aspects of employee culture.
The “things” that employees might need include physical tools like stationery, devices, and software. However, they might also be lacking instructions, examples, data, or subscription articles that would help them to perform at their best.
7. Are you able to access the learning and development that you need to do your job well?
Learning and development are not only essential for employee performance. They are also key for engagement and satisfaction. According to a LinkedIn survey, 94% of employees would stay longer at their current workplace if they were given more opportunities to learn.
While you don’t want to overburden your employees with courses to complete on top of their normal work, you want to show them through your employee engagement survey questions and follow-up actions that you are invested in their success and ongoing sense of achievement and personal growth.
Questions Regarding Alignment
9. Do you feel that your work here is meaningful?
Employees who see the value of their work are happier in their role and are more motivated to work hard. If an employee feels that their work has no meaning, it makes sense that they would quickly become disengaged and put in only minimal effort.
If you find that some of your employees don’t feel that their work is meaningful, this indicates that you might not be communicating the mission, vision, and guiding principles of the organization effectively. This could be a good time to reiterate your mission and how each role in the company helps you achieve it.
10. Do you receive recognition for a job well done?
Employee appreciation is central to engagement because it builds relationships and rewards effort. In the United States in 2004, only 35% of employees said that they received recognition in the past year. This trend is likely contributing to the 27% of employees who change jobs annually.
If some employees express a lack of recognition, it could be time to build in a more systematic approach that includes regular recognition and appreciation for staff along with perks or rewards for outstanding achievement.
Questions That Look to the Future
11. Do you see further career opportunities for you here?
As we mentioned earlier, an engaged, committed employee rarely thinks about leaving. However, to reach that level of engagement and commitment to the company, employees need to feel that there are more development opportunities at the organization beyond their current role.
While some employees’ personal goals might include working their way up the company ladder vertically, others may be more interested in a different kind of opportunity, like trying their hand at a different role, working in another department, or contributing new ideas and projects to enrich the role they currently occupy.
12. Has anyone at our organization asked you about your career aspirations?
Showing an interest in employees’ career goals through your employee engagement survey questions demonstrates that you care about them and their self-realization and are prepared to invest in their future. In fact, a lack of career progression is the top reason that employees leave their job—even if they’re generally happy.
On top of the annual survey, frequent pulse surveys, and job performance reviews, be sure to offer employees one-on-one meetings to talk about their career aspirations and see how you can help them on their way. Providing a field for comments with this question will also reveal how much your employees feel invested in by superiors.
After the employee engagement survey questions that are rated on a five-point scale, consider including some open-ended questions to give employees a chance to share any remaining comments or concerns they might have. These questions are not as easy to aggregate into a simple graph or data set. However, they provide important insights that can help direct your efforts toward engagement.
13. Is there anything that you think we are doing well?
Every company does some things well. Find out what they are! These successes provide the platform for further success and it’s important to keep them going strong.
14. Is there anything that we could do better?
This might well be one of the most powerful questions on your employee survey—if you follow it up with action. If several employees echo similar sentiments, prioritize these changes for immediate action.
15. Is there anything else you would like to add?
Here, employees have a chance to get out any lingering doubts or frustrations, or reiterate something they particularly like. If you provide an optional field for self-identification, some employees might express a desire to follow up on a particular issue.
Engagement Survey Questions in Review
Employee engagement surveys are an invaluable tool for gaining a sense of where your employees are at. It also provides specific information about what you’re doing well and what could be improved.
Once you have the completed surveys and have analyzed the responses, provide a summary for employees to acknowledge the sentiments expressed and make decisions on items to implement that will make a real impact on your employees’ experience at your organization. Remember, engaged employees are happy employees.