Top 5 Employee Engagement Survey Mistakes

Employee engagement is a hot topic for organizations big and small. Regardless of size, a highly engaged workforce is a company’s greatest asset and can be a determining factor in how successful the company is. But the only reliable way to measure engagement is through an employee survey. Whether your organization is just starting to quantify engagement or has tracked it for years, it doesn’t hurt to take a look at your strategy and make sure you’re not making any of these top five employee engagement survey mistakes.

  1. Not measuring employee engagement

It may seem obvious, but the biggest mistake a company can make around employee engagement is to not measure it and track it. If management and executives aren’t paying attention to the engagement levels of the workforce, they could be missing red flags and warning signs that could affect everything from revenue to staff turnover. On the flip side, they would also be missing areas of strength within the organization that they could capitalize on. Employee engagement programs show employees that their opinions are important. When team members feel that their opinions are valued, organizations will see a positive ripple effect throughout the ranks.

  1. Making Assumptions

Do you really know what your employees need to be successful, or are you making assumptions? The second mistake organizations often make involves making assumptions about what their employees want and need in order to be successful. Without talking directly to team members about problems, how can management expect to solve them? For example, in order for a doctor to diagnose a patient’s problem, they have to examine and perhaps run tests on the patient. The same goes for a company. The company must examine the drivers of engagement in order to identify strengths and solve issues. Assumptions lead to wasted time and resources and will only slow down the process of making improvements.

  1. Going it Alone

Imagine this scenario: Your company has just administered its first employee engagement survey and the participation rates were great. You know the next step is to analyze the results and take action on them, but you’re worried that you don’t have the right people involved.

Prior to the launch of an employee engagement survey, multiple teams within the organization must be in alignment, so that once it’s time to take action, the right people are in place to follow through. The following teams should be working together to ensure success:

The executive team will add credibility to your efforts. Their buy-in will resonate with staff and will show that employee engagement is a priority at the top. This group can also help keep managers and employees accountable for following through on action plans to address areas of improvement.

Buy-in from middle management is also critical. These individuals play a huge role in whether or not employees are engaged and satisfied at work. In many cases, following through on action plans put in place will largely be their responsibility because of their involvement in day-to-day operations.

Finally, HR needs to be involved because of their work with employee policy, recruiting and onboarding.

  1. Being Inconsistent

If you’re just beginning to measure engagement, you’re off to a great start. For the first time you will have real data about your employees that you can use to make smart and informed decisions. Using the data you’ve gathered, you can put tactical plans in place in order to change employee behavior and company culture. But how will you know if your plans are successful or not? The answer is surveying consistently. We recommend that you survey employees at least once per year so that you can adjust action plans as the culture within your organization shifts.

  1. All Talk, No Walk

Surveying employees without taking action on the data you collect is the number one way to sabotage your company’s engagement efforts. When people feel that nothing is being done to improve the work environment after survey results have been collected, they’ll begin to lose trust in management and employees will stop responding all together in future surveys.

If you are interested in conducting an employee engagement study, give us a call. Our Strategic Talent Management Services team would be happy to discuss your situation and put a plan in place to address your concerns. Contact us today!


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