Employee surveys are a great way of knowing and understanding how your employees are feeling at work.

It’s a great way for managers to know where exactly you need to improve in order make employees happier and more engaged.

Knowing this, why wouldn’t you use the survey results to make things better?

We released an infographic about employee surveys, and in the infographic two of the statistics were based on research from Aon that said 27 percent of managers never even bother to view results at all, and 52 percent of managers view results, but don’t do anything about them.

Besides wasting time and resources, you’re creating an even bigger problem by ruining credibility with your employees.

If employees don’t trust you, how can you ever expect to implement another initiative down the road. It’s almost guaranteed that they won’t engage in the process.

All managers at every level need to be on board, and need to take this process seriously. It’s in everyone’s best interest to take this process as seriously as possible. Happy employees will be better for managers, everyone will be more productive, the company as a whole will grow and be better, I don’t see why any manager wouldn’t take this seriously.

In this post, I want to look at how you can use employee survey results to improve employee engagement.

One of the major problems, is the frequency at which employee surveys are done. Conducting an employee survey once or twice a year is a bad idea for a few reasons.

The Problem With Annual Surveys

One of the biggest problems with annual surveys, and I write about this a lot, is that it’s only a brief snapshot in time. It doesn’t give you an accurate picture of what employees are really thinking.

That distorted data can lead you to make the wrong decisions on how to improve, wasting even more time and resources.

Employees also experience survey fatigue, and after so many questions, will most likely not be answering them as seriously as they should be.

Also, because it’s a one-off event, employees are less-likely to take it as seriously than if it was a recurring event. If I knew that I would be getting a short survey every week to fill out to help consistently improve things, I would for sure participate.

For the company, it makes managers’ jobs so much harder, because the survey is so big and broad, action planning becomes overwhelming.

That’s why it makes so much more sense to go for a short, but frequent employee survey approach.

The Beauty Of Employee Pulse Surveys

Employee pulse surveys are short, frequent surveys on a specific topic.

Being short, employees won’t experience survey fatigue, and will learn to love them. Every week, they won’t mind answering a couple of questions, because of how easy it is to do.

The frequency of the surveys are probably the most important part. Not only does it give you a more accurate picture, because you’re measuring over time, but it lets you track improvements over time.

Looking year-over-year at survey data isn’t specific enough. To be able to see a trend line month-to-month is much better, and will let you adjust much faster.

Now, let’s look at how we can create an action plan with our employee survey results.

Creating An Action Plan

The secret is being agile in your approach.

Normally, the way surveys are conducted, is once a year, after the survey is finished, a committee will meet and start creating an action plan. This takes some time, and then perhaps several initiatives are launched in different departments, creating even more confusion.

A much better way to go about it, is to make small, focused changes to maybe one or two areas. Focus on one or two areas for improvement, and then track over time how you’re doing.

Here are two things that you need to make this process successful:

1. Monthly Action Plan

Because we’re doing surveys that are shorter and more focused, we can create mini-action plans every month. Each month, we’ll be tracking our success, and comparing it to the previous month.

We can use the data from each week’s pulse survey to track our improvements over time.

2. Frequent Feedback With Employees

It’s also a great idea to make sure that managers are having frequent one-on-ones with their employees. This could be done maybe once a month or once a quarter, the more frequent the better.

You can use the recent data from the pulse surveys to discuss what’s going on in person. If you notice that over the last two months an employee’s happiness level has been decreasing, you can start to discuss why that might be, and what the company could do to improve it.

Keep It Transparent

It’s very important that the employee survey results are made transparent. Everyone should be able to see what’s going on at any time, and everyone should be made aware of any ideas being implemented.

An interesting idea might be to use a task management app like Trello, and have a space where anyone could see what tasks are at what status in their development.

It doesn’t really matter which tool you use or if you even use a tool at all, but the process should be transparent. You shouldn’t have anything to hide anyways, and everyone will feel more connected to the organization if they’re all a part of the decision making.

How Do You Use Employee Survey Results?