Measuring what matters in Employee Engagement Surveys

Written on:
January 22, 2024
Sonia Elicia D'Silva

Once upon a time, companies distributed annual surveys to employees to gain a sense of general office sentiment and solicit feedback. However, in the current tight employment market, where organisations are racing to compete for the best talent and implement strong company cultures, relying solely on annual or one-time surveys isn't enough. Recognizing the significant impact of culture on a company's profitability, the importance of engaging employees is clearer than ever. It’s well understood that HR departments are actively seeking innovative solutions to foster employee engagement, from internal employee engagement surveys to onboarding assessments and staff benefit polls. 

So, it's time to bid farewell to those one-time/ once-a-year surveys and welcome something more lively and real-time to truly grasp what makes your team tick.

Break free from one-size-fits-all employee engagement 

Gone are the days when we treated employee engagement like a static, one-size-fits-all affair, measured annually (if at all). Meanwhile, we know that engagement is exceptionally fluid and highly personal, and it requires effective translation to action. That's why conducting surveys annually alone can no longer be a company’s key mechanism for measuring and driving engagement.

Engagement is fluid, so demand that data is reflected in real-time

There is a significant distinction between companies that aim to collect an engagement score and those that consider engagement a ‘key business metric,’ transforming the aspect of the employee experience. It’s important to choose a survey software that facilitates real-time responses from employees, while supporting your team with key insights to take action -This allows you to gather and measure engagement in a fluid manner. For example, monitoring work-life balance in specific regions can uncover localised engagement challenges.

All too often data is gathered infrequently and is viewed as sufficient because “we have a good score” — but then the data goes into a black hole. Instead, HR and business leaders need to use real-time engagement information to drive both human capital and business objectives. 

Infrequent engagement initiatives can lead to more problems than solutions, as employees dutifully fill out surveys, but nothing comes of it. What’s more, if a company only measures engagement once a year, it will be relying on data that’s aged-out. 

So, what’s the right cadence for measuring employee engagement?

Organisations need to measure frequently enough so they’re getting real-time, accurate data, but also need to ensure there’s time to act on data, to effect change. A regular cadence of three to four times a year is ideal to inform a better employee experience, as companies ought to then have adequate time between surveys to implement micro-actions (or bite-sized movements), which are critical for making efficient change. At Milieu, we see employees appreciate this schedule, and are  incredibly willing to participate when there’s an open dialogue, especially when they see their feedback addressed.

Translating data into action

Measuring what truly matters on a schedule that provides real-time insight will allow leaders to better understand their workforce and take action to deliver a more engaging overall workplace experience. All of that said, a continuous form of measurement requires organisations to have the right survey tools in place, breaking from traditions of long-form survey methods. In recent years, the concept of pulse surveys has emerged. 

Remember, engagement isn’t a check-the-box activity. After the data is collected, it’s time to use it to inform action. This is the most critical step in engagement management and really the sole reason for instituting real-time measurement. While having all your employee feedback in one place is a great start, the next step is having a survey software that enables you to track and analyse all your initiatives- Look for features such as the ability to run full analyses, conduct significance testing, dynamic data querying, and AI-powered text analytics. These capabilities will empower your business to derive meaningful insights with minimal manual data crunching, saving your team a significant amount of effort and time.

Choosing the best survey software for your business

Since employee engagement is constantly evolving, even companies with existing engagement measurement systems need to carefully consider if there is room for improvement. This is where Milieu Insight's latest survey software, Canvas, becomes invaluable – serving as your user-friendly and highly intuitive sidekick on the employee engagement journey. Canvas is not only effective but also cost-efficient and sustainable for your team in the long term. It empowers organisations to continuously gather employee feedback, providing a holistic view of each employee. This enables leaders to take timely and targeted actions, closing critical experience gaps faster and fostering a workplace environment that engages and fulfils.

If you're in search of a powerful survey software platform that provides user-friendly tools for designing and distributing surveys, conducting data analysis, visualising results, and reporting consumer insights, feel free to get in touch with us. Canvas by Milieu is an award-winning survey software that encompasses all the features covered in this article. Alternatively, you can download this quick info sheet for more details.

Milieu Insight, the top online survey tool and market research agency Singapore , is dedicated to helping companies thrive in a data-driven era.

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