Employee engagement survey questions help you to gauge how employees really feel about working for your organization. Below, we provide 30 questions that will get to the heart of what motivates and energizes your employees.
So, what is employee engagement? It can be difficult to pinpoint an exact definition - different people feel engaged in different ways. Broadly speaking, employee engagement is a psychological state which aids positive mindsets and behaviors among staff.
According to occupational psychologists at the University of Utrecht, three key areas define employee engagement. These are :
1. Vigour (how energized we feel and the effort we put in)
2. Dedication (how enthusiastic or inspired we feel, our pride in our work)
3. Absorption (how absorbed we are in our work, how focused)
Engagement is enthusiasm about work. It’s that feeling we get when we look forward to going into work and sharing our ideas. Of course, this can greatly improve our performance.
In customer service, we sometimes call this ‘going the extra mile’ – the actions of engaged employees surpass the transactional – as they feel intrinsically motivated to go that little bit further.
All aspects of a company influence engagement – from how we give feedback to how effectively our teams work together. It is HR’s responsibility to track changes in employee engagement. The best way to do this is through an employee engagement survey. We’ll provide 4 quick tips – and then give you 30 examples to use straight out of the box.
Employee engagement surveys tend to be longer than the average pulse surveys. Many companies only conduct employee engagement surveys once or twice a year.
You don’t want to give employees survey fatigue – so schedule them strategically.
Would it be useful to have feedback on employee engagement before you roll out performance reviews? Is there an especially busy time of the year where an EE survey might be the last straw for stressed staff? Time appropriately!
So many areas influence engagement. Ask employees what they think about working with their teams, about working relationships and their views on learning and development in the company.
If you’re worried the survey might run too long if you try to cover everything, don’t worry. Supplement your findings in later surveys. Employee wellbeing surveys and diversity and inclusion surveys can tell you plenty about what might be going wrong with your engagement strategy.
Cast the net wide when it comes to question types. Include open-ended questions that give a space for the employee’s voice. Use Likert scales for speedier answers – these help HR benchmark broader organizational trends.
Some organizations make the mistake of creating an average ‘employee engagement score’ – and modelling their strategy around this figure.
In fact, employee engagement surveys lump together various aspects of your organization. It’s important to evaluate how different areas – from communication to inclusion – are impacting on engagement.
This is an opportunity for employees to respond personally. What does working at the company feel like to them?
If you get a lot of contrasting responses, this is a sign of an inconsistent organizational culture.
Engaged employees love chatting about their work! It’s not just the field or industry that fascinates them- they speak positively about the organization and its values.
This is not only about career progression, but also about how invested an employee is in the company’s objectives.
Remember that employee engagement is a feeling, and an attitude to work. There is nothing like getting ready for work in the morning with a feeling of purpose – and that each day is an exciting challenge.
For disengaged employees, the hours tick by slowly. This is an indicator that employees can judge fairly objectively, giving HR a sense of motivation levels among their teams.
Motivation ebbs and flows, but for some employees, work is rarely energizing. Supplement this with questions about recognition – staff may lack motivation because their efforts aren’t being valued.
When we have opportunities to grow our skills, we are better engaged at work. The best managers know their employees’ goals inside out.
If there is a low benchmark for this question, HR can create a strategy to address this. For example, use software which makes it easier for managers to meet one on one with employees and discuss their goals.
Some managers create tricky environments for their employees. It’s important to check in and see if managers are creating the conditions for engagement.
Since the move to remote work, employees have reported feeling overwhelmed by their workloads. If some teams are more overworked than others, you might consider taking on some new hires.
Stretch goals can be a recipe for disaster – Elon Musk is famed for setting and missing them.
However, creating opportunities to challenge employees shows trust – and gives them the chance to shine at something new.
Albert Bandura wrote about self efficacy at work. Self efficacy is a bit like self esteem, however it relates to how we feel about our ability to complete specific tasks.
Engaged employees will likely have a healthy sense of self-efficacy. They motivate themselves with a positive view of their capabilities, but also know when to ask for help.
Feeling good about our work drives up our engagement. Pride in our achievements improves our confidence and self-efficacy.
HR leaders and managers can create the work environment for self-efficacy. During remote work, this might involve ensuring that employees have all the needed hardware and software to work from home.
A great learning and development program aids self-efficacy, by helping us recognize and expand our skillset.
Employees who are confident in their abilities are more likely to take risks. While this isn’t always a good thing – informed risk-taking shows an employee is engaged enough to think outside the box for big returns.
Employee engagement is closely tied to our relationships with co-workers. According to Gallup, women who had a best friend at work were more than twice as likely to be engaged (63%). A friendly, supportive working community makes work less stressful – and makes going to work more fun!
The most engaged employees are usually not lone wolves- they learn from their peers and find satisfaction from collaboration.
When a team has its moment to shine, every team member experiences a win. Gauging team effectiveness is a great way to evaluate what might be driving lower engagement.
Employee feedback is all important. We won’t feel engaged for long if we never know how to improve.
Gather information on your feedback or reviews processes to see how they impact employee engagement.
Employee engagement relies on feedback from managers. According to Gallup, employees who receive daily feedback from managers are three times more likely to be engaged than those who receive feedback annually.
Even informal pointers can make employees feel supported.
Constructive feedback is important for both employees and managers to feel engaged.
Check in on employee wellbeing in your survey. Are employee experiencing burnout? Your employees can’t pour from an empty cup – and engaged employees work need support to work at their best.
Include some questions that let employees paint a picture of life at your company. You’ll find that some employees give useful suggestions that can inform a strategy – and open ended questions provide a space for more personal responses.
These employee engagement survey questions give you insights into the whole cross-section of employee engagement. For something as subjective as engagement, a survey provides super useful tangible insights.
If you’d like to learn about what to do with your survey results, why not read our blog post After the Employee Engagement Survey: 5 Steps to Create Real Change?
To find out about how PeopleGoal can transform your engagement strategy through fully-customizable surveys and much more, book a demo today.
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