It doesn’t matter if you have hundred of thousands of employees, or just three, employee surveys are still necessary to ensure a smooth running organization. However, conducting surveys is more than just handing out forms and getting your employees to answer. To ensure the accuracy of survey data, you, as an employer must observe proper guidelines.
First, be clear about the goals of the employee surveys. Are the surveys to be utilized as gauges for salary increase or for amendments of company policies? It is also important to explain these objectives to the employees. It is advisable to discuss with them the rationale behind the need for a survey and why is it necessary. Another important aspect to discuss is how they will be informed of survey results. These people would want to see results. Second, contact an impartial third-party organization to facilitate and conduct the survey. This will assure employees that their answers and results will not be tampered with to the advantage of the management. Third, be clear about the time constraints. Conduct the survey within a specific time frame so that the process would be more efficient and the results would be achieved as quickly as possible. Fourth, emphasize the value of survey response. Aim for a hundred percent response rate to ensure that all employees have had their say. This will pave the way for a democratic compromise between you as the employer, and the employees. Let your employees in on discussions about these matters and you can be almost be assured of optimum survey results.
However, employee surveys are much more effective if there is a guarantee from the management. Guarantee your employees that your actions and the changes in the company will be based on the survey results. Inform them how you intend to act on these results. It is a good idea to suggest that the final move regarding the survey results would be based upon employer-employee compromise. Provide the means to conduct the survey. It is important that the means you choose should be based on the skills of your employees. An online survey program can process data faster but if most of your employees don’t know how to use computers or aren’t comfortable using one, a paper questionnaire survey is your best bet. In any survey, it is important to assure your subjects that their anonymity will be protected. Confidentiality of personal information is important to encourage employees to be honest in answering surveys.
Lastly, remind your employees that the employee surveys are done for the protection of their rights within the company. It is a good idea to remind them during the course of data collection about survey goals. Publish survey results to encourage your employees to participate in discussions of company plans.