Why bother with staff surveys?
Most reasonably sized organisations conduct a staff survey annually. The purpose of the staff survey is typically to assess the levels of satisfaction and engagement of staff. This is an important issue to keep in touch with regularly, as attracting and retaining staff is a critical issue in today's competitive marketplace. At Full Circle we are able to work with clients to help them design valid questions around a range of issues from whether people are clear about their role to whether or not people are clear about the direction of the organisation. Like any survey based project it is extremely important that the questions are both useful for the organisation and also are known to link with key, known indicators related to staff satisfaction.
When a staff survey is well conducted an organisation ends up with very comprehensive data that they can explore further and action. However the real benefit of staff surveys is often overlooked. The real value is that it sends a clear and strong message to staff that their opinions on a whole range of matters are valued. There is at least seventy years of research in the staff satisfaction literature that tells us that the most important factor for people in the workplace is a feeling of being involved, valued and "being in on things." People actually like to bond strongly with their organisation and to feel a sense of belonging, even if their length of stay is shorter these days. Even more importantly they want to be treated with respect and be appreciated. So it is very important when running a staff survey to do the following two steps very well:
1. Show enthusiasm
Even if on bad day conducting the annualstaff survey feels like a mechanical task to be ticked off by Human Resources it is extremely important that you view the staff survey as afresh opportunity to connect with staff. It should not ever be treated as mechanical, as that attitude is likely to seep through to staff and they will become disenchanted with the project
2. Act on the results
Once you get the data it is important that staff see that something happened as a result of their efforts in completing all those surveys. Unfortunately in our experience many staff in most organisations feel cynical about the staff survey influencing future action.
The good news is that if you conduct a staff survey expertly and act on the data you will actually increase the levels of staff satisfaction in your organisation. Contact us at Full Circle to find out how.