Employees are the backbone of any organization. Too often, companies suffer from not paying enough attention to their employees. Do your employees know what your company’s goals are? Are they deeply involved in helping the company reach those goals? Good internal communication survey questions can help you find out.
We understand now that work culture isn’t as simple as having a coffee machine. Employee motivation can be tricky. Employees should know that their work is contributing to something larger. Communicating with employees is important to make them feel like their work is meaningful. Effective internal communication helps you achieve that goal.
There are many channels through which employees receive company news, from emails to slack channels and team meetings. But which are the most effective for your company? Are those emails getting lost in the inbox, or are people zoning out during meetings? You need an internal communications survey to find out.
Why You Should Conduct An Internal Communications Survey
An internal communications questionnaire is an important part of a company’s communication strategy. But a good strategy understands the needs it is addressing. Any workplace that cares about its employees must have an internal communications survey.
Firstly, they help you identify weaknesses. You can choose to spend large sums on hiring consultants to help improve your communications strategy. Or you can do the simpler, more cost-effective thing and ask your employees. Analyzing the results of the internal communications survey will give you a strong base to improve your company’s strategy.
Secondly, surveys give employees a voice. Ineffective communications can make them feel like they don’t have a say in the company’s decisions. This is how employee engagement falls. Companies need to give employees a channel to express their feelings. This can be more important than you think. A Salesforce study recently found that employees who feel heard at work are 4.6 times more likely to give their best performance.
Now that we understand why internal communication surveys are important let’s get to the best questions to ask.
The 7 Most Important Internal Communication Survey Questions
To ask effective questions in a survey is an art. There are many places we can go wrong. To get good quality data from an internal communications survey, make sure you’re only asking the clearest and most important questions. Here are the 7 best internal communications survey questions to supercharge your survey.
1. How do you currently get information about the company?
One of the primary goals of the internal communications survey will be to find out what your current communications channels are. How do your employees getting information about the company? Before anything else, your internal communications survey questionnaire should help you find this out.
Early in the internal communications survey, you want to ask questions about the status quo. You already have some communication channels in place. Which ones are your employees relying on? Do they tend to discuss this with their managers, or read the company newsletter? This question starts with a positive. It helps you assess what’s working.
What if you want to find out the results of a more specific internal communications channel? You could make it more specific. Let’s take the company newsletter for example. Instead of asking a broader question, you could ask ‘How frequently do you read the newsletter?’ The goal is the same. Find out which channels are working.
2. How much effort does your direct manager make to keep you informed?
There is no doubt that digital efforts enhance internal communications. But after all, nothing can replace the human touch of a manager. For employees, the best channel for knowing about the company is their manager. It is crucial that your internal communication survey find out whether that’s happening.
For the most accurate responses to this question, the ideal response would be in the format of a rating between 1 to 5. Employees can then leave a rating matching the extent to which they’re informed by their manager.
Having such a question in your internal communications survey does more than give you reliable data. It also shows employees and managers that this is a priority. The whole team is then conscious that managers should keep employees informed. Having such questions is a great way to communicate the company’s priorities without having to be direct.
3. Does your team assist you to complete your work?
A big chunk of internal communications is employees openly collaborating with each other. If an employee is feeling on their own, that is not a great sign. A company should bring teams together so they can learn from each other. This question helps you find out whether that’s happening.
This can be a multiple-choice question to help you get the clearest data. It is pretty obvious when an employee feels like part of a team, and when they don’t. If they are openly communicating with peers and seeking help, that’s a sign of good communication.
Internal communication surveys often suffer from ignoring collaboration between peers. Feeling part of a community helps employees stay engaged at work. A good internal communication survey must find out whether that’s happening. If you find out that it’s not, that means its time for some team-building activities.
4. How would you rate your knowledge of the company’s goals?
This is perhaps the most asked question in an internal communications survey. We can spend hours strategizing. It all comes down, though, to what the employee retains. Thus, our internal communications questionnaire must find out how much employees know.
This question is a self-assessment, instead of a simple test of how much an employee actually knows. Rather, it tests how much employees feel like they know. This is a more important metric. What matters to us is that employees feel like they’re an important part of the company.
This question in an internal communications survey will help you gauge how far along you are. An ideal communications strategy will focus on getting this number up. Employees should feel like they’re involved and know a lot about their organization. Answering this question will also make employees conscious of their levels of knowledge. That’s never a bad thing.
5. Do you care about the future of your organization?
Any good manager knows how important this question is. Employees will only stay motivated if they care about the future of the company. We could even say that all internal communication efforts are aimed at this goal. Employees should care about the shared mission of the company. But do they? This question will help you find out.
An internal communications survey is simply a tool to find out how your employees feel. If they’re demotivated and don’t care about the company, you should know. If they feel that they’re a part of a team and your communication strategy is working, you should know. So don’t be afraid of asking bold questions. We want to know so we can find out if something’s wrong.
Having a question like this in your internal communications survey shows that you’re open to the employee’s honest opinion. It can help employees feel that their organization is listening, and that can mean a lot to an employee.
Your most important asset is your employees
Engaged employees are the happiest and most productive.
Private Podcasts are designed to foster employee engagement.
— John Palumbo (@PalumboLand) September 14, 2020
6. Do you feel like the company listens to your concerns?
This is an important area for your internal communications survey to cover. Till now, we’ve asked questions about whether employees are receiving information. A well-rounded internal communications survey also asks if communication is happening the other way around. Are managers listening to employees’ concerns?
It is always essential to have a communication strategy to keep employees informed. It is as important, however, to have a strategy to listen to them. Companies that don’t listen to employees can create a discouraging work atmosphere. So it is essential to find out if thge employees feel like the company is listening.
The internal communications survey itself is, of course, part of the company listening. But its important to remember that it doesn’t end there. It’s important to take employee feedback seriously and make changes accordingly. Communications can only go so far if there is no real impact. Companies that want to retain their talent must make their employees feel heard, and take measures to make them comfortable.
7. How do you prefer to get the information about the company?
The point of an internal communication survey is to find out how to improve your communications. Well, your safest bet is to ask your employees directly. How do they think the company should reach them with important information? Do they prefer team meetings, where discussions can take place? Or would they rather just receive an email about it?
This question could be a checklist or a text box depending on your company’s openness to new communication channels. Employees can then point out which communication feels the most effective to them. You can use this data to design a communication strategy that takes your employees’ preferences into account.
An overwhelming majority of your employees might feel that team meetings for announcements are useless. Or they may feel the need for more meetings to voice their thoughts. Either way, this internal communication survey question will keep you in the know.
Tips for Conducting An Effective Internal Communications Survey
Now that we have the important internal communication survey questions let’s get into a few tips to conduct a good survey. After all, designing the questions is only part of the challenge. We must also make sure that employees take it and make sure the results are accurate. Here are a few do’s and don’ts to help you along the way.
Keep it Anonymous
If it wasn’t already clear from the questions we’ve included, anonymity is a must. We don’t want to know what specific individuals think. That misses the point altogether. We want to find out how informed, and heard employees feel. For them to respond honestly, the burden of personal identity needs to be taken away. They should constantly feel free to express their concerns.
For an internal communications survey, anonymity is essential. Employees should feel comfortable expressing concerns about their managers. They should also feel okay admitting they don’t know much about the company. It’s also important to stress while marketing the survey that it’s anonymous. That fact itself might get employees to take it eagerly.
Run A Sample Survey with a Focus Group
It can be helpful to include employee feedback in the survey itself. Have a small set of employees take a survey before sending it out to the whole organization. This way, you can root out small mistakes in the survey or unclear questions. The last thing you want is for a question to get useless data because of a lack of clarity.
A focus group can tell you when they feel like internal communication survey questions is unclear. Only they can have the authentic experience of answering the survey. It might be best, in that case, to get their views first.
Follow Up On Your Survey
I cannot emphasize this enough – follow up on the results of your internal communications survey. If the results show problem areas, set up teams to fix problems. If a particular team seems to be communicating well, tell them that. It’s paramount for the employees to know that the survey isn’t just a formality.
If you take surveys and employees don’t hear back or don’t feel any changes, that’s not a good thing. Any effect the survey itself has on making employees heard is dependent on them actually being heard. If possible, show clearly the changes you’re making after the internal communications survey. Employees will feel heard and be enthusiastic for future surveys.
The best internal communication survey questions are the ones that address a company’s most pressing needs. Employees need to feel like they’re actually a part of a team that’s moving toward the company’s goals. People should often be free to express their concerns or consult team members. Healthy internal communication habits lead to more productive workplaces.
The best way to make sure your organization is on track is to conduct regular internal communication surveys. Problems that are not clearly visible might come up in these surveys. You can then use the results to overcome challenges and maintain a healthy workplace.
The best surveys are anonymous, have clear and bold questions, and make employees feel heard. They deliver great results to drive an effective internal communications strategy. Getting it right isn’t very hard, and the result is motivated employees and collaborative teams. Design an internal communications survey today and get started on the path to a happier workplace!
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