Conducting an employee engagement survey has become increasingly popular with companies and HR teams. It helps HR leaders and employers gauge how motivated, loyal, and satisfied their employees are with their jobs and the organizations that they work for.
By understanding employee engagement levels, companies can gain valuable insight allowing them to make critical changes that can boost productivity and success.
What is Employee Engagement?
Employee engagement is the level of enthusiasm an employee has for their position and company they work for. Employee engagement can be measured by learning the connection and motivation levels that employees have. This then can help an organization determine the commitment and dedication employees have for their business and what they are willing to do to see it succeed.
As employees get more educated about workers’ treatment and rights, its no surprise that HR teams in every industry are making employee questionnaires and surveys a top priority. However, creating thoughtful employee survey questions isn’t easy. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best employee satisfaction survey questions for you to implement in your own company employee survey.
The 20 Employee Engagement Survey Questions
After assessing several sources on employee engagement surveys, we’ve compiled a list of the best employee satisfaction questions. For your convenience, we’ve also broken down the questions and why it’s important to ask them. There are also benchmark scores provided so you can assess your own surveys and decipher the results.
In this list, there are a variety of question types from employee index questions, L.E.A.D questions, and free text questions. By selecting these types of questions, the survey will give you more comprehensive results. To learn more about them, you can continue reading below.
1. “I am proud to work for [Company].”
This question is pretty straightforward and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that it’s all about discovering if your employees have pride in working for your company. The results of this question will determine how your brand is viewed by the people who work for you.
Essentially companies should be aiming for an overall score of 80% to 90% and should be very concerned if they score lower than 70%. It’s important that companies score high on this question because if your employees aren’t proud to work for you, their work ethic, motivation, and job satisfaction will suffer.
Occasionally, this is referred to as the “barbeque test” because it’s aim is to find out if an employee would be proud to mention that they worked for your company while at a barbeque.
2. “I would recommend [Company] as a great place to work.”
The results of this statement let companies know if their employees enjoy their job to the point of recommending it to their friends and family.
Organizations should be looking to score high on this result with a benchmark of 80% to 90%. If companies are scoring less than 60% they should be worried that there is a problem with the day-to-day tasks an employee must perform or the work environment.
3. “I rarely think about looking for a job at another company.”
While people may recommend your company as a place to work, that doesn’t mean they aren’t looking for a new position. They may just believe it to be a good fit for someone else. This question helps to fill this gap and discovers whether or not your staff is happy enough to not search for other work.
People who are engaged with their position will find that they don’t think about working for other employers while people who are less engaged might be more likely to believe greener pastures lie elsewhere.
A good score on this question would range from 55% to 60% with 70% being very high and a good indicator that you’re doing things right. On the other hand, a score lower than 40% would mean your staff isn’t likely to stick around for much longer.
4. “I see myself still working at [Company] in two years’ time.”
Once again this question is a follow on from the last to help fill any gaps. While an individual may not be looking for another job currently, that doesn’t mean they are planning on staying with your company for the next few years. When combined these questions help give you an indication of if you’re employees are truly happy with the role they play in your organization.
Similar to the previous question this benchmark score ranges from 60% to 65%. If the score of this question is higher than the score on the last, you can forget any concerns you have about retention.
5. “[Company] motivates me to go beyond what I would in a similar role elsewhere.”
It’s important for companies to know if they are doing everything possible to boost employee morale and motivation. This question is especially necessary if your company revolves around seasonal work and by nature has a low retention rate.
While this is a tough question to score a high result on, it’s important to reach a benchmark of at least 70%. Scores less than 55% often mean your employees aren’t motivated at work and therefore aren’t putting in their best efforts. Having a disconnected staff is bad for business and could see any chance of success thwarted.
6. “The leaders at [Company] keep people informed about what is happening.”
A fast way to destroy your company is to stop communication between the leaders and the rest of your employees. Communication is key when it comes to running a business and it’s important that your employees feel like they are being kept in the loop when it comes to the organization’s future.
Companies that break down hierarchies within their business often score much higher on this question and have great results. The benchmark score you are looking to achieve ranges between 65% and 75%. If you’re falling below this level, you should take a serious look at your internal communication and remedy it before it truly affects your growth.
7. “My manager is a great role model for employees.”
This question is phrased so that employees see and rate their manager’s behavior in the broader context of the company. It can help distance an employee from any grievances that they might have with their manager.
Companies should remember that lower scores here do not mean that you need to fire your managers, but rather is the hint that your managers require more in-depth training to fulfill their job. The benchmark for this question is 70% to 80% and if you can surpass that, we recommend analyzing what you’re currently doing to train your managers and see if you can upscale the results.
8. “The leaders at [Company] have communicated a vision that motivates me.”
A company’s vision not only serves as a beacon for the business but also helps drive each individual employee. That’s why it’s so vital the leaders can communicate that vision in a way that inspires employees.
Having something that is bigger than the everyday tasks does wonders for employee engagement.
A score of 65% to 75% is the goal you want to reach with this question. If your score is low, you can work on improving it by first ensuring your employees are informed about your vision and then working on your motivation.
9. “I have access to the things I need to do my job well.”
There’s no hidden motive with this question. It will simply let you know if you’re providing your staff with the tools they need to complete their job. Without the right resources, tools, or things, your employees won’t be able to go above and beyond for your company.
The benchmark you want to hit for this question is 75% to 85%. Scoring any lower than 75% on this question means your staff is lacking tools essential to their jobs. Not only will this cause tension and frustration within your ranks but it will halt any progress you wish to make. Combining this index question with a free form answer question will help you to gain better insight into what your staff members need to do their tasks.
10. “I have access to the learning and development I need to do my job well.”
This follows on from the last question and dives further into what your employees have (or don’t). Giving your employees ample access to training, support, and development opportunities let them know you care about their own personal success and growth. Providing your staff with enough chances to grow their skills and learn new ones can also benefit you and your company. It can result in more motivated, loyal, and happier employees.
Encouraging learning and development within your company can be anything from running training courses to helping your employees pay off their student loan debts. FutureFuel.io is just one of the resources you can use to help your employees with their learning journey.
The benchmark you want to achieve with this question is 65% to 75%.
11. “Most of the systems and processes here support us getting our work done effectively.”
It’s impossible to do everything perfectly, which is why you should be careful with the wording of some questions. This question is a prime example. Instead of using the word “all” which is absolute, the word “most” has been implemented. This stops employees from being hung up on whether or not you’ve got absolutely everything right.
In these questions, subjectivity plays a big role so the benchmark tends to fall a little lower at a range of 55% to 65%. Falling below this means you may have to look at updating and reworking your systems and processes for optimal success.
12. “I know what I need to do to be successful in my role.”
While knowing what it takes to succeed within the company is one thing, succeeding on a personal level is another. This question helps to determine if your employees are aligned with their roles within the company. Understanding one’s role and what it means for the company helps everyone involved and creates a stronger workforce.
A low score in this situation means there is some discord with people’s roles and it should be remedied quickly to ensure your employees stay satisfied with their positions. Usually, companies score between 80% and 90% on this particular question.
13. “I receive appropriate recognition when I do good work.”
Recognition is key when it comes to keeping your employees engaged and satisfied. You’ll be searching for a score of at least 65% to 75% because anything lower indicates that your employees don’t feel appreciated in their roles. If you fail to show gratitude and appreciation for the hard work your employees put into your company you’ll do more damage than good.
Many workplaces forget how far a little gratitude can go. People like to know that the work they are doing isn’t going unnoticed so be sure to give out recognition to those who are deserving. Not rewarding your employees for good work can force people into disconnecting from their jobs and consequently disrupt the way your runs.
14. “Day-to-day decisions here demonstrate that quality and improvement are top priorities.”
Employees like to know that the workplace is constantly looking for ways to improve and advance, it gives them drive and ambition to follow. Ensuring that a company makes daily decisions that prioritize quality and improvement within the organization is a necessity for alignment.
Companies that score high on this question often see high engagement levels, top performance, and financial success. 60% to 70% is the goal you want to be aiming for here.
15. “My manager (or someone in management) has shown a genuine interest in my career aspirations.”
Good leadership subsequently means good mentorship and having upper management showing genuine interest in the growth of each employees’ careers is essential for connecting an individual to their role, the company, and its values.
When managers can build a strong rapport with their team and can encourage their employees to grow and take charge of their own projects, we see an increasing development in staff’s interest to progress within company ranks. Having the ability to discuss personal development in one on one meetings is arguably more important than a manager’s technical skills and capabilities.
Reaching a benchmark of 65% to 75% should be desired here for any lower scores could mean that either your managers don’t realize the importance of employee growth and development or your organization isn’t prioritizing this as a key role for managers.
16. “I believe there are good career opportunities for me at this company.”
If you’re chasing company loyalty and want to build a committed team than being open to internal advancement and switches between roles of a similar level in different departments is necessary. If your company shows that it’s willing to take good care of its employees and wants to provide them with growth opportunities, you’ll increase your retention rates and motivate your employees to do well in their roles.
60% to 70% is the benchmark for this question and if you’re seeing anything lower than that you’re employees are perceiving little to no career opportunities at your organization, meaning they aren’t likely to stick around in the long term.
17. “This is a great company for me to make a contribution to my development.”
Development drives engagement, whether it’s career-related or not. If you want your employees to be present, you shouldn’t be discounting their personal development and purely focusing on their career. Wellness programs are just one of the many ways you can encourage your employees’ development that doesn’t directly affect their advancement in the workplace.
Companies that have a high level of employee motivation and inspiration score between 70% and 80% on this question. Increasing low scores here should be a priority as many will find that without engagement your employee’s work will drop.
18. “Are there some things we are doing great here?”
This is a free form question and as such allows employees to give you more insight into what is working for your company. Don’t make the mistake of taking this on as praise, but rather dive into why its working and figure out how you can apply a similar method to other areas to achieve the same results.
The results and information gathered from these free writing questions often relate to tangible products such as the work environment, however, we also see answers in leadership and development too.
19. “Are there some things we are not doing so great here?”
Just like the last question, this one allows employees to point out exactly what areas need improvement within your organization. Finding your weak points and addressing them is crucial if you’re wanting to see your business succeed. Companies tend to crumble because they can’t take action when employees give them criticism. Don’t get defensive when you analyze these answers but approach them with an open mind and try to see where your employees are coming from.
20. “Is there something else you think we should have asked you in this survey?”
Once again this gives your employees a chance to let you know how you could have improved. They may have particular grievances which they felt unable to express through your employee engagement survey questions and this allows them to let it all out. It’s intentionally open-minded to show you are willing to take criticism on board, even on the small things, and are constantly looking to improve.
Engagement Index Questions
Some companies only use a single question to gauge employee satisfaction but research shows that it takes more than that to gain true insight. The first five questions in the above list are considered to measure the engagement index.
“I am proud to work for [Company].”
“I would recommend [Company] as a great place to work.”
“I rarely think about looking for a job at another company.”
“I see myself still working at [Company] in two years’ time.”
“[Company] motivates me to go beyond what I would in a similar role elsewhere.”
Most companies simply ask “I would recommend [Company] as a great place to work.” This leaves a lot of room for inaccuracy when it comes to employee engagement. Employees may want to recommend your company to others, but it doesn’t give you any indication if they want to stay with your company or for how long. Asking several questions helps to clarify this and will give you a stronger idea of how satisfied, motivated, and engaged your employees are.
L.E.A.D stands for leadership, enablement, alignment, and development and this question type’s goal is discovering exactly how your company fairs in each of these key aspects. These questions also have a rough hierarchy and employers need to remember that engagement needs to happen on an individual level before it occurs on a company one.
Leadership questions are pretty straightforward and give employers answers about their leadership and management. Good leaders help to inspire others within the company and ensuring your management team has access to the right training and support in order to do this is key.
This helps to determine if you are providing your employees with the necessary tools and skills to complete their roles. Are you getting behind your staff and providing all the resources they need?
If an employee doesn’t feel aligned with their position or your company, it’s only a matter of time before things come falling down. Alignment questions assess if your staff feel like they are well suited in their role and also if their role is suited to the company and matches up with the values and policies of the organization.
Providing your employees the chance to develop both personally and professionally creates trust, loyalty, and respect. Development questions help companies determine if they are giving employees enough opportunities to thrive, grow, and succeed in their business. This ranges from management supporting employee endeavors to providing help with training and education.
Free Text Questions
Free text questions, also known as free form or free writing questions, will help you get more specific answers regarding your company. These free text questions will allow your employees to elaborate on how they feel about your company and share their thoughts on what you are doing right and wrong.
It’s important to remember that free text questions often result in very subjective answers so when looking at the results for these questions, it’s best to first keep an eye out for a pattern. Recurring answers usually show the majority opinion your employees have about your organization. One-off answers can usually be discarded as an anomaly and while that doesn’t mean they aren’t important, it just means you have other areas to address first.
Likert Scales: Why Do You Need Them?
Likert Scales are a scientifically proven way to gain valuable insight that is easily analyzed. The Likert scale, commonly referred to as a rating scale, usually has 5 to 7 points for an individual to choose an answer from. In employee engagement surveys we often see the following Likert scale in practice:
1 – Strongly Disagree
2 – Disagree
3 – Neutral
4 – Agree
5 – Strongly Agree
With this 5 point scale, employees are able to answer quickly and the limited options help to take away any anxiety they have about answering these questions. Most people are also already very familiar with the Likert scale and will have used it previously. That familiarity also helps to reduce any stress while taking the survey.
While the results are easily analyzed when using a Likert scale, there’s little room for self-expression and that can mean you don’t see the entire picture. This is why we should always pair questions that use the Likert scale with free text questions to flesh out any ideas when needed to gain better insight.
Why Measure Employee Engagement?
So why should you even bother to measure employee engagement? You see your employees day in, day out, so surely they can come to you if they ever have any concerns. You may be concerned that carrying out a comprehensive employee engagement survey will take too much time and effort and not know the kinds of benefits it could provide.
Measuring employee engagement is just as important as any other aspect of your business and without truly understanding what your employees think of you, your company, and their roles you will find it hard to achieve any real success. Your employees are the backbone of your company and it’s important to take their opinions into consideration or risk losing them to another employer who takes them more seriously.
Employees often won’t speak out on what they think can change with a company without being asked as they fear retaliation. Giving them a chance to air their grievances internally can also prevent them from lashing out at your company on social media.
Go Craft Your Engagement Survey
Now you know the recipe for an effective employee engagement questionnaire, it’s time to craft one for your company. We’ve also created an Employee Engagement Survey Template to get you started.