Not all employee engagement surveys are created equal—neither are the questions you include.
While it might be tempting to use your annual employee engagement survey as an opportunity to combine multiple surveys or topics into one, this can confuse employees about the purpose of the survey and make it more difficult to take action on employee feedback.
There are many employee survey questions to choose from. But to accurately measure employee engagement there are a few questions you must be asking.
In this article, we’ll share 20 expert-recommended, employee engagement survey questions to include in your employee survey, including questions about:
Employee Engagement Outcomes Survey Questions
Our definition of employee engagement makes the case for including a variety of questions in your engagement survey. Our proven-model for measuring engagement includes a mix of engagement outcome questions and potential impact questions.
Engagement outcome questions help you assess the current state of engagement in your organization and impact questions help you figure out where to focus your efforts to improve or maintain engagement.
To narrow your search, consider asking questions that uncover perceptions of work, team, and organizational engagement.
It is often beneficial to be as direct and transparent as possible when asking employees questions about a specific topic. In this case, it is highly appropriate to ask about perceived employee engagement within an employee engagement survey.
Commitment to organizational goals increases the likelihood that employees are aligned toward achieving a common outcome. If employees perceive that their immediate coworkers are committed to a unified goal, they’ll feel a sense of tactical and strategic solidarity. Successful teams have members who are working with, not against each other.
Our research found that this question consistently has high correlation with engagement. Similar to Net Promoter Score—a simple, widely-used measure of customer loyalty—the goal of this question is to find out whether employees like your organization enough to tell their friends about it.
Career Growth and Development Survey Questions
When employees see professional growth and career development opportunities in their organization, they are 2.5x more likely to be highly engaged than those who do not. Add questions to your engagement survey to find out if your organization is offering the right opportunities for your employees.
Employees need clarity around their career path. Do employees understand the direction they’re headed? What opportunities are they looking for? If they can’t see a growth path at your organization, they’re likely to find it somewhere else.
While growth is particularly important among younger employees, more tenured employees might be looking for different types of opportunities. Include professional development survey questions for employees to learn more about their preferences for career growth.
Communication and Resources Survey Questions
Your employees' day-to-day can be greatly impacted by the tools and information they have at their disposal. While the right resources are important, if employees don’t know what they have access to, they are less likely to find success.
Like Maslow’s hierarchy of needs—a sense of belonging and self-actualization are great, but if your basic needs aren’t met, you’re not going to survive.
These workplace survey questions will help you understand how effectively you are communicating with your employees, including access to resources and information.
One of the best things about this question is that it can quickly bring to light the resources employees need to be successful. While tackling equipment needs can come with expenses, it can often be a simple problem to solve—unlike more complex issues like feeling valued or improving communication.
Communication is the lifeblood of an organization. It builds trust, boosts alignment and understanding, fosters good relationships, and improves morale and efficiency. If employees feel that information isn’t available to them, this question can help you learn what processes or communication loops need to be added. It can also uncover deficiencies in training or organizational knowledge.
Nobody wants to work somewhere they aren’t heard. It's important that employees have a chance to speak their minds. This survey question can help you understand your workforce’s receptivity to feedback and new or different ideas.
Change Management Survey Questions
Change can breed anxiety and uncertainty among your workforce if not handled appropriately. Combat that anxiety by uncovering employee perceptions about change management using these survey questions.
As your organization faces change, leaders may shy away from or postpone any communication until the dust has settled. However, both of these tendencies can increase anxiety and uncertainty among employees:
This item puts the organization to the test and addresses how leaders handle strategic and difficult communication.
Making and communicating organizational changes is important. But doing so in a way that aligns with your company culture can make a big difference. Find out if your leadership team is approaching their decision-making process with the employee in mind.
Individual Needs Survey Questions
Recognition and work-life balance are two basic, but important, needs in the workplace. If employees feel undervalued or constantly torn between getting ahead at work and spending time with their family, it’s unlikely they’ll be engaged. Learn more about your employees’ individual needs by asking these survey questions.
When employees believe they will be recognized, they are 2.7x more likely to be highly engaged. But many employees don’t feel recognized. Use this employee survey question to understand whether employees feel valued.
Do your employees feel like robots or people? Our research shows that when employees believe their workplace supports their health and wellbeing, they are 3.5x more likely to be highly engaged. With the rise of remote and hybrid work environments, it can be helpful to learn more about the perception of flexibility by asking work-life balance survey questions.
Manager Effectiveness Survey Questions
When employees have favorable perceptions of their managers, they are much more engaged. While we know managers aren’t the only reason employees leave, managers certainly play a critical role in employee engagement. Find out more about manager effectiveness with these survey questions.
Managers should be empathetic and compassionate, but also assertive and decisive when needed. They need to feel comfortable talking with employees about a variety of topics, including:
When employees believe their immediate manager cares about their development, they are 3.1x more likely to be highly engaged. Great managers can coach toward success and help their best employees find pathways to grow and develop.
Constructive feedback is critical to employee growth. And employees want feedback about their performance but want a collaborative coach who will help them be their best. The success of feedback interactions can indicate the health of an employee-manager relationship and the ability of a manager to drive performance.
Team Dynamics Survey Questions
Team dynamics are the unconscious, psychological forces that influence team behavior, culture, and performance. How a team functions as a unit can be incredibly engaging or disengaging. Use these questions to understand if your teams are operating effectively.
Clear communication is fundamental to the success of any team. Among the most important factors to clearly communicate are individual and team goals. In fact, when goals and accountabilities are clear, employees are 2.8x more likely to be highly engaged. Employees should know who is accountable for achieving, monitoring, and updating goals. Establishing ownership can also empower individual team members and reduce role ambiguity.
Employees want to be part of a winning team. But team success can be difficult without a strong team committed to the same goals and level of quality. This question can help uncover inconsistencies in team dynamics like communication, motivation, and leadership.
Trust in Leadership Survey Questions
Like team dynamics, leadership relationships are extremely important to engagement. Employees want to work for leaders and teams that:
Consider these questions to learn about employee perceptions of their trust in leadership.
When leaders aren’t transparent or honest about how your organization is conducting business, employees can feel disappointed and disengaged. They want to know that the organization is successful, but also how you’re succeeding.
Employees who intend to stay at your organization want to make sure that there will be a place to come to work well into their future career. If they don’t trust current leaders to guide your business to success, they definitely won’t want to stay.
Future Outlook Survey Questions
Your employee value proposition is what your organization has to offer employees in return for their work. It can be a magnet that attracts and retains high performing employees. Asking employee loyalty survey questions can help you gather feedback about why they choose to work for you and why they leave.
Employees need to have a clear understanding of the organization’s vision for success. When they can see the big picture they will be more capable and motivated to help you achieve your goals. Ask this question to find out whether you are communicating your vision effectively and efficiently.
Beyond the basic understanding of your organization’s plans for success, employees need to know if and how they fit within that vision. Strong job fit drives employee engagement, but employees also need to see how their current and future aspirations align with the overall direction and success of the business.
Employee engagement is multifaceted—so your survey should cover a variety of factors that could impact engagement. When building your next employee survey, use these questions as a starting point or download our best practice Pulse Survey Templates.