Alert! Key Employee Engagement Survey Questions You Must Ask Your Staff

Critical Employee Survey Questions You Should be Asking Your Staff

by Rod Dunne on November 23, 2011

in Human Side

Your employees have a voice. Generally, staff members work very closely with clients as they are the front lines of your operation. If you do not hear what your employees have to say, production and customer satisfaction levels can suffer.

Employee engagement surveys are designed to engage your employees and give them the voice they need to feel like they are appreciated. Many companies use customer satisfaction survey questions to find the needs & voice of the customers while overlooking their own internal customers (i.e. your staff).

If you are in the process of designing an employee engagement survey, there are a number of different questions you should ask.


Employee engagement survey questions need to focus on how to improve productivity, how to make work conditions more accommodating, how to boost morale, and how to be more innovative as a company. If you ask the right employee survey questions you will get valuable answers.

Employee Satisfaction Survey Questions

One of the first areas you should focus on when you are creating your survey is employee satisfaction. When your employees are happy, they are more productive. If you start to notice a slump in your production, one of the root causes could be an unhappy team. And one of the easiest business improvement techniques is to encourage and develop happy, motivated and loyal staff.

When you build employee engagement survey questions relating to satisfaction you have to make sure you ask direct questions that will get direct answers. If you ask vague or very general questions the feedback on the survey may be too vague to make adjustments in your operations.

Some very effective questions to ask on your employee satisfaction surveys include:

  1. Agree or Disagree: I feel that the company cares about its people.
  2. Agree or Disagree: I am proud to work for my employer.
  3. Agree or Disagree: Company leadership personnel has made changes that have been positive for me and the company.
  4. Agree or Disagree: I feel that people get rewarded in the company strictly based on performance and the merits of their work.

Each of these questions are direct. When you pose an “Agree or Disagree” question, the employee only has the option to answer one or the other. If they disagree with the statement you should offer an open form area where they can put comments on why they feel the way they do.

Question 4 is essential for understanding what drives your staff. When you can gauge how they want to be  rewarded then you can focus on employee motivation ideas (bonuses, stock options, time off, peer recognition, etc.) that will have a better chance of success.

Always remind your employees that the survey is confidential and private when they are filling out the form. If you do not make this known, they may not answer truthfully.

Employee Engagement Survey Questions Relating to Production Improvement

Another key area you must focus on is improving your production. Your employees may be very aware of problems in your business that are affecting your profits. In fact, employees generally know the root of the problem before the management does.

If you listen to the answers of the survey, you can increase production by making very minute changes. If you fail to listen, or your fail to act on what you hear, you will not accomplish your company objectives. Make sure you pose the right questions and are willing to understand the views of the employees when you are creating them.

Some effective questions include:

  1. Agree or Disagree: I am given the tools I need to be productive.
  2. Agree or Disagree: Business systems are easy to use.
  3. Agree or Disagree: Business operations runs smoothly and all of the requirements are easily understood.
  4. Agree or Disagree: Management reviews my performance and gives me recommendations on how to improve.

Each of these questions are very important. If your employees disagree with any of these questions you need to provide a field where they can address what operations or business systems are inefficient. This can form the basis of strategic human resource management. Once you can online operational processes and employee motivations with your own company’s strategic goals than the potential for improved capabilities in-house can only increase.

Make sure none of the items on this section of the survey can easily be misinterpreted. You should read the wording of the question aloud several times before you include it on your survey.

Working Conditions

There are state laws that govern working conditions. Just because you are abiding by the law does not mean you are offering working conditions that employees want. Make sure to include employee engagement survey questions on work conditions so you can invest in ergonomic furniture or accessories the employees need to function.

If you think about it, marketing teams would regularly use customer service quotes and feedback to determine changes to the products and services the company provide. Likewise, business leaders should be looking for their own employees feedback about how their environment, operations and procedures could be improved. After all, workers at the ground level producing your products intuitively know what is working right, and what is failing.

Sample working condition questions include:

  1. True or False: Sufficient resources are available to allow employees to take advantage of professional development opportunities.
  2. True or False: Adequate time is provided to complete tasks
  3. True or False: Office furniture is comfortable and suits my needs daily.
  4. True or False: Management personnel is understanding and I enjoy working for my supervisor.

You can address if furniture or other employees are making your staff members uncomfortable. Make sure to include a Disagree, Somewhat Disagree, Agree, or Somewhat Disagree option in this section.

Some employees may be happy with their supervisors where others are not. You need to give them flexibility in answering so they can be as honest as possible.

In Conclusion:

Employers can use online survey tools to build questions and to conduct the survey. You can also look to free online surveys for examples when you are building your own personalized survey questions.

Make sure you look through survey tips when you are in the process of building your engagement survey and address each of these areas in your own way. Free online survey tools makes building your survey quicker and easier.

Choose reliable tools that are effective and you can improve your business. Give your staff members a voice and conduct a survey each year with all of the right questions.

Author Rod Dunne...

Blog owner and sole writer Rod DunneI am the owner and sole writer on Product-ivity.com. This is my personal blog detailing troubleshooting tips for small businesses. Posts are based upon 2 decades in consultancy & innovation management within startups/maturing companies.

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{ 2 comments }

cathy martin November 25, 2011 at 1:06 pm

Your questions with the word AND in them will yield invalid results as people get confused from that type of question structure. For example:

Company leadership personnel has made changes that have been positive for me and the company. (what if changes are just good for the company?)

Business operations runs smoothly and all of the requirements are easily understood. (what if operations are smooth but not easily understood)

AND is a huge no no in when developing survey questions. If you need research on this topic please let me know.

Admin November 25, 2011 at 1:26 pm

Thats an excellent point Cathy. There are nuances in the questions that could be read different ways depending on the context & even the employee.

The first question (..positive for me and the company..) I had intended for startups where individuals often align their objectives with the startups.

I should’ve pointed out some of the scenarios where applications of these questions could apply. Moreover, there are not a “one-size-fits-all”approach the would need customization.

Cheers, Rod

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