How to turn survey results into action?

Question & answers around employee feedback and job satisfaction surveys.

How to turn surveys results into action?

To take actions after a survey you need to understand the problems behind the survey-score. You can only improve the score if you know why they are low.

Given a classical employee engagement survey, focus on:

  • Categories with the lowest score
  • Categories about relation to the direct manager
  • Categories about retention "do you see yourself in 2 years here"

To understand the reason for the score, study the comments. The comments provide details why an employee has given a high or low score.

You can use sentiment analysis or feedback analysis tools to analysis large amounts of comments.

Involve the employees with workshops and discussion-rounds to validate your understanding.

If possible collect concrete examples of problems.

Once you have the context and the detailed understanding of problems you are in a good position to find the right actions.

What are good questions for employee retention?

Good questions for employee retention ask relatively directly about willingness to change the job.

Example questions for employee retention are:

  • "Do you see yourself in 12 months at this company?"
  • "have you thought about leaving for another job?"
  • "Would you recommend your job to a friend?"

These questions require some reflection on the employee side and are not suitable for daily micro-polls but can be asked as part of a pulse-survey or monthly micro-poll.

What are good questions to monitor job satisfaction?

The best questions to understand "job satisfaction" are the simple questions.

Example questions for job satisfactions are:

  • "How was your shift today?"
  • "How was your work week?"
  • "“How are you today?"
  • "Are you happy at work today?"

Why are these questions effective for monitoring?

  • They are simple, they can be asked repeatedly and allow for spontaneous answers
  • They are broad, you can learn about all kinds of problems
  • They are open ended, entices people to add comments

Collecting rich comments about the daily frustrations and annoyances at work (or off work) allows you to understand the employees' needs and help you in turn to create an attractive workplace.

Are employee net promoter scores good?

Employee NPS or eNPS is a great tool, depending on what your goal is.

eNPS are helpful for monitoring employee retention and willingness to change the job. eNPS is a good question to ask in a pulse survey.

eNPS is not good at identifying the reasons causing dissatisfaction.

To understand the reasons behind the dissatisfaction you need rich comments and descriptions of what causes day-to-day frustrations.

Inadequate eqipment, unpleasant teams, work-schedule that is incompatible with family life, …

To gather such comments questions to monitor "job satisfaction" can be helpful.

How To Make Your Workplace More Attractive?

The key to provide an attractive workplace is to understand the employee's needs. As a manager you should be sensitive to workplace frustrations and day-to-day problems.

Only if you understand the difficulties of the job can you provide solutions for a better workplace.

Letting employee see that you care is very important. Let the team be part of the process to create an attractive workplace.

Institute daily or weekly "improvement" and "feedback" sessions in the work-routine to systematically collect employee needs. Let employee use convenient feedback tools to submit problems / improvement ideas anytime anywhere.

How to understand team needs as a manager?

To understand your team's needs you need to go beyond engagement-survey scores. Study the comments to see the reason behind dissatisfaction.

Provide feedback-channels for employees to submit rich open-ended text feedback about daily teams frustrations and encountered issues on the job.

Let your team verbalize their daily job experience. Topics might come up you wouldn't have thought to ask for in a structured survey.

Discuss the collected feedback together in the team and devise solutions together to demonstrate that feedback is valued.

How to ask for feedback from your team?

For an employee to give feedback you need to ensure two things:

  • No negative repercussions
  • Promise that something is going to happen

Nobody will do the effort to give feedback if nothing is going to happen anyway.

How to ask for feedback depends on the workforce / audience and the goal.

Desk-employees can be reached easily via email-surveys and 1:1 meetings.

Blue-collar and service staff are harder to reach. Shift-start meetings can be the right forum or mobile feedback-apps where employees can submit feedback anytime and anywhere could suit your workforce.

The question itself should be adjusted for the audience. Classic questionnaires require time to study the questions.

Open-ended spoken feedback are better for spontaneous input for people not usually working at a desk.

Use the tool that supports the channels and question-format for your workforce.

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