Employee Survey Structure
A typical employee survey questionnaire covers topics like the examples listed below. Comprehensive questionnaires usually include about 50-60 rating questions (e.g. 5-point rating scale) as well as a few short-answer questions that ask for employee opinions and perspectives.
Short questionnaires (fewer than 20 items) often fail to identify specific problem areas. While such surveys usually do an excellent job of measuring employee engagement or satisfaction, they are also likely to leave you with more questions than answers when you try to understand what is driving employee engagement or disengagement in your workplace.
Longer employee questionnaires (more than 80 items) lead to lower completion rates and "rater fatigue", where the quality of responses drops off as raters become tired of filling out the survey and spend less time carefully reading and thinking about the survey questions.
An employee survey template that can be customized may be beneficial for some organizations, but it is important to start with a standard employee survey questionnaire and to maintain the statistical integrity of that questionnaire. Custom survey questions that are added to an existing survey template cannot be statistically validated or benchmarked, so it is difficult to know what the results are really measuring.
Sample Employee Survey Questions
The survey questions below are examples of items that are typically found on an employee survey questionnaire.
However, we don't recommend using this as a template to conduct your own survey because:
Employee survey results without benchmark data as a reference point will leave you with no way to determine whether your results are good or bad.
An employee survey questionnaire without a statistically-based model of engagement to frame the results will leave you with no way to know which items have the greatest impact on engagement within your organization.
- I receive useful and constructive feedback from my manager.
- I am given adequate feedback about my performance.
- I receive feedback that helps me improve my performance.
- I have an opportunity to participate in the goal setting process.
- Employee performance evaluations are fair and appropriate.
- My supervisor gives me praise and recognition when I do a good job.
- When I do a good job, I receive the praise and recognition I deserve.
- Teamwork is encouraged and practiced in this organization.
- There is a strong feeling of teamwork and cooperation in this organization.
Quality and Customer Focus
- People are held accountable for the quality of work they produce.
- The quality of our products and services are very important to this organization.
- In this organization we maintain very high standards of quality.
- This organization understands its customers' needs.
- This organization is extremely focused on customer needs.
- Customer needs are the top priority in this organization.
- We constantly look for ways to improve our products and services.
Purpose and Direction
- I understand how my work directly contributes to the overall success of the organization.
- I have a good understanding of the mission and goals of this organization.
- My job is important in accomplishing the mission of the organization.
- My supervisor provides me regular information about the mission and the goals of this organization.
- I am familiar with and understand the organization's strategic goals.
- Doing my job well gives me a sense of personal satisfaction.
- I am paid fairly for the work I do.
- My salary is competitive with similar jobs I might find elsewhere.
- My benefits are comparable to those offered by other organizations.
- I understand my benefit plan.
- I am satisfied with my benefit package.
Workplace and Resources
- I have the resources I need to do my job well.
- The necessary information systems are in place and accessible for me to get my job done.
- I have all the information I need to do my job effectively.
- My workplace is well maintained.
- My workplace is a physically comfortable place to work.
- My workplace is safe.
- Information and knowledge are shared openly within this organization.
- Communication is encouraged in this organization.
- My manager does a good job of sharing information.
- Senior management communicates well with the rest of the organization.
Opportunities for Growth
- I have adequate opportunities for professional growth in this organization.
- I receive the training I need to do my job well.
- My manager is actively interested in my professional development and advancement.
- My manager encourages and supports my development.
- I am encouraged to learn from my mistakes.
- My work is challenging, stimulating, and rewarding.
Work/Life Balance; Stress and Work Pace
- The environment in this organization supports a balance between work and personal life.
- My manager understands the benefits of maintaining a balance between work and personal life.
- I am able to satisfy both my job and family/personal responsibilities.
- The pace of the work in this organization enables me to do a good job.
- The amount of work I am asked to do is reasonable.
- My job does not cause unreasonable amounts of stress in my life.
- My manager treats all his/her employees fairly.
- The organization's policies for promotion and advancement are always fair.
- Favoritism is not an issue in raises or promotions.
- My manager is always consistent when administering policies concerning employees.
- I am always treated fairly by my manager.
- Everybody is treated fairly in this organization.
Respect for Management
- I respect the senior leaders of this organization.
- Our senior management leads by example.
- I respect my manager as a competent professional.
- The leaders of this organization know what they are doing.
- Our senior managers demonstrate strong leadership skills.
- I am very satisfied with my manager.
Respect for Employees
- My manager always treats me with respect.
- My manager listens to what I'm saying.
- This organization respects its employees.
- My manager values my talents and the contribution I make.
- Employee job satisfaction is a top priority of senior management.
- My coworkers care about me as a person.
Performance and Accountability
- Poor performance is effectively addressed throughout this organization.
- Senior management is held accountable for achieving results.
- This organization has high performance standards.
- People are held accountable for achieving goals and meeting expectations.
- We measure job performance to ensure all staff are achieving results.
Personal Expression / Diversity
- I can disagree with my supervisor without fear of getting in trouble.
- I am comfortable sharing my opinions at work.
- We work to attract, develop, and retain people with diverse backgrounds.
- Senior management is genuinely interested in employee opinions and ideas.
- People with different ideas are valued in this organization.
Measuring Employee Satisfaction and Employee Engagement
The examples below are survey questions that measure employee satisfaction or engagement more directly. These are the kinds of questions that very short employee surveys typically use. We do not use these kinds of questions in our employee survey template for one simple reason - they are not actionable. These questions provide a good indication of whether employees are satisfied or engaged, but they don't do a very good job of measuring why.
- I am very satisfied with my job.
- I am highly committed to this organization.
- I would recommend this organization to friends and family.
- I feel personally driven to help this organization succeed and will go beyond what's expected of me to ensure that it does.
- I am extremely proud to tell people that I work for this organization.
- I am actively looking for a job outside this organization.
- I have applied for another job outside this organization in the past six months.
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