Every week a questionnaire in the mailbox of employees: is that a good idea or not? So-called pulse surveys - weekly or monthly recurring questionnaires - have become increasingly popular in recent years. But what exactly are the considerations for opting for high-frequency research? And what are the potential dangers? In this article you will read all about the advantages and disadvantages of pulse surveys and you will find tips for the effective use of high-frequency research.
Definition pulse survey
Pulse surveys are short, high-frequency questionnaires that can be used in addition to or instead of extensive employee satisfaction surveys. The surveys are designed in such a way that they can be carried out in weekly intervals. Just as human health can be monitored by checking the pulse, the health of an organisation can be measured by means of a pulse survey.
Advantages of high-frequency employee surveys
1. Monitor effect of changes
By using frequently recurring research to you can monitor or implement the project in a targeted manner and at short notice. changes have the desired effect. Suppose that research shows that employees are dissatisfied with their working hours, and you decide these are more flexible ...to make. Then it would be a shame to delay the effect of this until the following time. to be able to measure annual surveys. A short follow-up investigation makes it possible in order to be able to quickly provide targeted information in relation to changes gather.
2. Connection between employee and management
By asking employees for feedback on a weekly or monthly basis, you as an organisation demonstrate that you are open to change and that you want to take action to increase the happiness at work. This makes employees feel heard and appreciated. This has a positive effect on the Organisational culturewhich translates to happier employees and a lower progression1.
3. Shifting and deepening focus
You can focus per pulse survey on a another point of attention. If an investigation shows that in the area of communication is room for improvement, it can be valuable to be in the In the next survey, we will discuss certain aspects of this in more detail. When you If you opt for an annual survey, it is possible that, as a result of the survey, you will have to with questions that won't be answered in the coming year.
4. Stimulates awareness of advances
By means of treating specific developments in the pulse surveys, the attention of the The employee is automatically pulled here. When, as a result of a study is taking steps to enable greater participation, it may be possible to it would be useful to ask the employee in the subsequent investigation how this can be done. has experienced. This ensures that the employee feels heard, but also that he becomes aware of positive changes.
5. Sentiment averaging
By submitting recurring questionnaires to the putting, you reduce the chance that temporary circumstances ...influence it. Suppose, for example, that on the day before the investigation there is a conflict on has been the shop floor. Whether there is just a move or renovation behind the back. This may (unconsciously) affect the way in which employees use the Fill in the questionnaire. After all, questionnaires remain a snapshot. It can are very good that the reality is just a little bit different than it is at the moment. of the investigation. By doing frequent research, that effect will be as it were expressions. This will bring you closest to the actual, average sentiment of the workers.
Potential dangers of high-frequency research
1. Doing research too frequently
As described above, doing frequent Employee Satisfaction Survey with a number of attractive benefits. However, doing too frequent an employee survey can be counterproductive.
If all goes well, you should carry out research in order to be able to make changes on the basis of the results. It is therefore not necessary to send questionnaires before these actions have actually been carried out and are visible on the shop floor. In fact, it is one of the biggest frustrations when doing employee research when nothing is done with employee feedback. And surprisingly, that still happens often enough. Last year, an employee engagement survey was conducted among more than 3,000 HR employees. One of the questions in the survey was: To what extent is the organisation prepared to take action on the basis of the results of the employee survey? This showed that only 42% of the organisations were willing to act on the results.2. It is logical that this has an effect on the employee's response rate. Too frequent examinations are therefore not recommended.
There is also something to say about a too low frequency of research. Because when you do act fast in response to the results, but then no further research for a long time to come it's a shame. You're not only missing out on valuable information here, but also stands still in its development.
Advice: Research only as fast as you can act
The optimal frequency of Staff Research depends entirely on the time it takes you to do something with the results. For many companies it is feasible to send out a questionnaire once a quarter.
2. Starting without a reference point
When you are interested in deploying of pulse surveys, you'd probably prefer to start right away... by sending out the questionnaires. However, herein lies a second danger. As discussed earlier in this blog, you can use pulse surveys to zoom in on areas for improvement within the organisation. To know what this However, initial research is needed. When you start with sending out questionnaires without having a clear idea of what you're you run the risk of asking out irrelevant questions. That's not only a waste of the employee's time, but also of the opportunity to to gather valuable information.
Advice: Start with an extensive employee satisfaction survey
By means of an extensive Staff Research you get a complete picture of the sentiment within the organization. Based on the results, you can then choose the points of attention you want to focus on in the coming periods.
3. Asking for topics that are not can be changed
It's not wise to use pulse surveys to address issues that are unchanging. Suppose that from initial research, for example, shows that employees are dissatisfied with the salary, but there are no resources available to change this. Although it interesting to gather more information about the reason for the dissatisfaction, isn't it useful to conduct a more in-depth survey here? ...dedicate. This creates expectations among employees who cannot live up to them. ...are.
Advice: Only ask for matters where action can be taken.
It is important that you choose topics to which changes can actually be made. This is how to avoid disappointment. Focus rather on subjects where profit is achieved can be.
4. Send out surveys that are too long
There are undoubtedly a lot of questions that your employees would like to ask. However, it is not wise to use all these to combine questions into one pulse survey. When the questionnaire is too long, more and more employees will drop out along the way. Especially when you choose monthly or even weekly research.
Advice: Keep pulse surveys short
Pulse surveys are intended to provide a to keep a finger on the pulse, not to repeat the initial investigation. to do. Make sure that the questionnaires are short: Definitely not longer of 5 minutes. In this way you achieve the highest possible response. rate and avoid survey fatigue.
Response high-frequency research rate
You may be wondering what the frequent sending of questionnaires with the response rate. Ensures the high frequency of the examinations does not ensure that the employee has the motivation to to participate? Or is the recurring email after expiration of time is not such a habit that the employee no longer pays attention to it?
Generally speaking, this is not the case. Frequent, short questionnaires provide more involvement and a feeling of connection between employee and organization. When employees experience that something is being done with their feedback (in the short term), they will continue to be triggered to cooperate. This is provided that the questionnaires do not require too much time investment. The response rate for the average internal survey is between 30 and 40 percent.3. By properly communicating the purpose of the questionnaires, acting on the results of the survey and not making the lists too long, a response rate of more than 85% can be achieved.
Each a week's employee satisfaction survey?
At the beginning of this article we asked ourselves the question whether doing weekly Staff Research is a good idea or not? The answer is more nuanced than a simple yes or no. The optimal frequency of research is different for each organisation. The most important rule to keep in mind is that it is never wise to investigate faster than you can act.
Do you believe in the power of pulse surveys, or do you think annual surveys are sufficient? Let us know below!
- Rachel Muller-Heyndyk (2018). Bad company culture costs UK economy £23.6 billion. HR Magazine.
- Mark Murphy (2018). This mistaken belief is ruining most employee engagement surveys. Forbes.
- Andrea Fryrear (2015). What's a good Survey Response Rate? SurveyGizmo.
August 19, 2019