Employee engagement. Most business owners and Human Resource personnel know they need to have engaged employees, satisfied employees, and loyal employees to operate a team successfully. In order to truly gauge whether or not your organization promotes a healthy and positive culture for its employees, an organization must use quantitative metrics gained through employee surveying efforts. Anecdotal and “comment boxes” are simply not enough to see the whole perspective of your employee-base.
Yet why do so many organizations choose against conducting any type of formal employee surveying process? The reasons stem from a variety of factors in which this article will discuss in further detail. Here are 5 barriers to conducting employee surveys and why organizations choose to avoid them:
- (1) Fear of receiving poor scores from employees – no one wants to be graded poorly in a satisfaction study whether it’s clients, employees, or the general public. Therefore, management at many organizations opt for the strategy of “what I don’t know won’t hurt me.”
- (2) Fear of generating dissatisfaction – the employee survey should inquire about sensitive topics such supervisors, pay, and benefits. These are essential parts of the employee experience and need to be inquired about in the script to provide your leadership with a complete view of overall satisfaction. However, some leadership fears that employees will begin thinking about issues that didn’t exist until the survey brought those topics to their attention. For example, an employee might not think about “additional perks” provided at the office until they read the question on the survey and realized there may not be any.
- (3) Fear of change and implementation – no employee surveying process is complete unless the organization is willing to make improvements and change based on the findings. Nothing will hinder employee morale more than if the data sits on a shelf and no action is taken. Addressing the data and its implications need to happen immediately following the survey efforts.
- (4) A feeling that an employee survey is unneeded – you have an open-door policy at the office, a comment box, hold a yearly strategic planning meeting, and you conduct yearly evaluations so why do you need an employee survey right? Wrong! The vast majority of employees fear being truthful with supervisors especially in one-on-one and in group meetings. When a poor culture exists at a company, everyone knows it except top management and many employees feel there is no avenue to voice frustrations. So this fear comes from the employee, not the leadership team. By using an anonymous employee survey through a third-party expert like RMS, it will assure employees that the process is confidential. With any type of opt-in feedback like comment boxes, our research experience has proven you will receive data from the extremists in your organization – a) those who are really happy and b) those who are really unhappy. But what about everyone in-between? There views matter as well and these views can be uncovered through a mass survey.
- (5) Fear of being overwhelmed by the employee surveying process or the data returned. The management of an employee survey does not have to be difficult. In addition to the benefit of confidentiality, using a third-party expert can also streamline the writing of a survey to answer key objectives, streamline the data collection process online through email, and streamline the analysis and reporting function for your management team. This should not be a barrier unless you are 100% sold on conducting the process in-house.
Research & Marketing Strategies (RMS) is an employee survey firm outside of Syracuse NY. RMS has conducts employee surveys across the country using its branded EmPulse tool and using customized survey scripts for clients. The RMS team has access to benchmarking data so your organization can compare employee scores to other organizations within your industry across the country. If you are interested in learning more about employee surveys with RMS contact our Business Development Director Sandy Baker at SandyB@RMSresults.com or by calling 1-866-567-5422.