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Employee Satisfaction Survey: A Brief Guide

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Why do you need Employee Satisfaction Surveys?

We live in a profoundly interconnected world. Many factors in the workplace collectively impact the degree of employee engagement among your workforce. For every employer and manager, it is crucial to identify and address these areas. A little bit of effort in the right direction can lead to happier, more productive, and loyal employees.

One of the most common and probably overused criteria while choosing a job and retaining a position for employees is “job satisfaction”.

According to a recent article in The Economic Times, 8 in 10 employees said they are dissatisfied with their jobs.

It seems scary.

So what does job satisfaction imply to your employees?

Is it the pay-check that they receive?

Is it indicative of the workload they have at work?

Or, is it the vibe and culture of the organization?

The answer varies from person to person and from one organization to another.

To keep a hold on the top talents, companies must act on the drivers and roadblocks of employee satisfaction.

And the only scientific way to measure satisfaction is through Employee Satisfaction Surveys.

Employee satisfaction survey (also known as employee attitude survey) is a standard survey explicitly designed to measure satisfaction among employees and track satisfaction trends over time.

Related: A Beginner’s Guide to Conducting Effective Employee Surveys

Employee Engagement Survey Vs. Employee Satisfaction Survey

Employee engagement and employee satisfaction are almost always used interchangeably. Although the two terms are closely related, there is a stark difference between them.

Employee satisfaction is the state of employees being content and happy at work. It can be achieved when treated well by the organization, aided by a great working environment.

Employee engagement, on the other hand, promotes increased productivity and passion for the work.

The purpose of satisfaction surveys is to understand the tangible and intangible factors that improve employee morale.

Related: Employee Engagement Survey: Everything you need to know

Benefits of an Employee Satisfaction Survey:

  1. A company’s culture is said to be the sum of the behavior of its people. Satisfaction surveys offer meaningful data that can help you in understanding the dynamics of the company culture.

  2. These surveys create organizational awareness by addressing the critical as well as minor issues of the workplace.

  3. Employee satisfaction surveys are the best way to track and benchmark employee satisfaction within the industry. It is a great way to ensure that the company aligns with industry standards in offering perks and benefits to employees.

  4. Running regular surveys to understand the satisfaction level of employees presents a caring image of the company. Employees feel empowered, and it boosts a much-need culture of continuous improvement.

  5. Another advantage of employee satisfaction surveys is that it spreads positive word of mouth. Happy employees spread good vibes through social media, review websites, polls, etc.

Read: Employee Satisfaction Questionnaire: 15 Questions you must ask!

Categories of Employee Satisfaction Surveys

The standard categories of Employee Satisfaction Survey include:

  • Autonomy
  • Benefits
  • Communication
  • Compensation
  • Culture
  • Creativity
  • Management Style
  • Work-life balance
  • Work-environment
  • Working relationships

What Should you Uncover Through the Survey?

When designed carefully, a satisfaction survey can help an organization in enhancing employee experience to the maximum.

Here’s what you should focus on:

The survey should focus on an understanding of employee’s perceptions of the management and leaders.

It should identify prime reasons for employee turnover and understand the latest retention trends.

It should become a medium to revisit company policies, benefits packages, compensation, etc.

Key Points to keep in mind:

Avoid Survey Fatigue:

Employee survey fatigue is real, and it is often the main reason behind low response rates. Survey weariness happens when:

  • Surveys are too long
  • The questions are very vague and irrelevant
  • The motive behind the survey is not clear.

Don’t make it too time-consuming:

Employees are most likely to respond to a survey during work hours. You must ensure that it doesn’t take up much of the time from their already cramped schedule. It is for the best if the survey is online and they land directly to their inboxes.

Frequency of the Survey:

Timing and frequency are critical factors in running a survey—running surveys once a year is a bad idea. Instead, you should spread the survey over the period. Improving the frequency and making surveys a regular part of the culture will ensure maximum success.

Maintain Anonymity:

Employee satisfaction surveys especially should be made anonymous. What makes an employee satisfied or dissatisfied at work are often personal factors. They would most likely not like to share it unless confidentiality is ensured.

Make sure that the management is on board:

Surveys are often ignored because management doesn’t take the necessary actions on the results. Before you rush to run your survey, make sure that you have an action plan and ready to implement changes.

Communicate Results:

Make it a point to share a summary of the critical results once the data are in. Also, communicate the successes after implementing employee-led ideas. This will reinstate the trust among employees, and they will stay engaged in future surveys.

Related: A Brief Guide On Employee Pulse Surveys

Final Words:

I hope this guide gives you a better overview of designing an effective employee satisfaction survey and getting the most out of them.

Are you running these surveys in your organization? If no, you should start right now. If yes, then do drop us an email. We'd love to include your suggestions on this list.

This article is written by Darshana Dutta. She works as a Content Creator and Digital Marketer at Vantage Circle. She writes extensively on trends around employee engagement and transforming company culture. For any related queries, contact

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