Do staff surveys really work?

Yes, yes and yes – if they are used for their intended purpose!

Staff surveys take the guesswork out of what your employee’s are satisfied with, and not so satisfied with at work and where they see opportunities for the employer.   It has been proven time and again that the best performing staff are those that enjoy their work, and where they work.  These are the staff who typically acknowledge they know what is expected of them and where their work fits into the bigger picture.

There are a number of survey options available from internet based right through to face to face interview based.  There are also different types of surveys.  These range from those that measure staff satisfaction or engagement through to those focussed on continuous improvement or if you are a good place to work when compared to other employers.

The first step is deciding why you want to do a staff survey.  This will then enable you to look at options available.  In our experience the most useful feedback has come from independent surveys that have been externally managed and analysed and which have asked staff to also submit commentary.  Our view is this is because staff can provide explanations and commentary without their name which encourages them to provide more information than they otherwise might.     

All good surveys will provide you with results and analysis of commentary that clearly show trends and priority areas for action.  From this information you can develop an action plan that you can share with staff and then manage through to implementation.  It is this part of the process that achieves business results and shows staff and prospective employees that you were genuine in wanting their feedback and that you listen.  The biggest criticism we receive is where employees say they don’t see the point in giving their feedback as nothing ever happens, or no changes are made as a result of it.

If you want to find out what survey might be best for your business, or if you would like assistance with getting the most benefit out of your staff survey contact Susan Manning, Organisational Development Consultant at Grow HR on 06 878 5454 or email