Employee Surveys and Focus Groups

Employee Surveys and Focus Groups

If you want to know the issues that influence your employees' performance and job satisfaction, you should be considering conducting an employee survey. Employee surveys are a structured process and organizational intervention to encourage employee participation in the performance of the organization.

Today it seems that significant change is a constant for organizations and employees. In order to survive and prosper in an increasingly competitive environment that is undergoing accelerating change, organizational leaders must develop or capitalize on ways to improve performance of the human capital. Thus, the need to understand and act on the critical issues that influence employee performance and job satisfaction has increased. One of the most effective and efficient methods of collecting this information and encouraging employee involvement in the performance of the organization is through an employee survey.

Wolf Management Consultants, LLC operates from the assumption that the most successful surveys are those which are designed with an "action" orientation and address the unique needs of the client organization. That belief requires a focus on the survey as a process, not just an instrument, and calls for a high degree of involvement and engagement from the client organization. We believe that a good survey is one that not only accurately measures employee perceptions, preferences, and satisfaction, but also effectively indicates the necessary actions required to effectively address identified issues. The objective is to provide the organization with the information it needs to ensure employee performance meets the business goals within a positive work environment for employees. We will work closely with you to foster employee involvement, tailor the survey content and manage the project to ensure the accomplishment of desired outcomes.

By developing and implementing a standardized employee survey process, an organization can achieve the following benefits:

  • A Baseline for Evaluation. The survey process establishes a baseline so that management can measure trends in employee attitudes and opinions over time. It thus provides a basis for evaluating the effects of policy, process or procedural changes that impact perceptions of product quality, efficiency, and quality of work life. Survey data, as an indicator of "organizational health," can also be a useful in the evaluation of management effectiveness.
  • A Communications Process. The survey communicates the organization's direction and values. In turn, it can promote a heightened awareness of key strategies and core values. Survey feedback can also be utilized as a developmental tool for employees to further reinforce strategic direction, core values, and desired behavior.
  • A Vehicle for Process Improvement. The survey provides a means for employees to offer ideas and input to process improvement. To the extent that good ideas are found close to the work and the customer, the survey provides an important source of input to drive continuous improvement.
  • A Basis for Positive Employee-Management Relations. The survey provides tangible evidence of management's respect for employee ideas and opinions. It communicates to employees that--"We care about what you have to say." This is an important message since total shareholder value, customer service and quality cannot be achieved apart from quality of work life.
  • A Fact-Based Decision-Making Tool. Survey data provides an objective basis for evaluating company priorities and allocating resources. It is one vehicle for evaluating the extent to which company objectives have been achieved. For an additional frame of reference, normative data enables comparisons with other companies who have participated in the survey process.
  • A Training and Development Function. The involvement of managers in the survey process provides an effective developmental experience, providing them with important insights into the dynamics of member morale and productivity, the importance of communication, and the impact of supervisory/ management styles.
  • A Change Management Tool. Surveys have traditionally been used as an important exercise in upward communications. While still retaining this benefit, surveys can also be used as an important first step in change management and organizational development. The survey should be used as an action research tool. Survey results are not merely a means for identifying concerns or problems that should be addressed, but become the basic data for management to evaluate "how are we doing," "what is changing around us," and "how do we need to change?"

In addition, the employee survey provides a strong signal to managers that the longer term perspective of "HOW" they manage their workforce, and the short term results based on "WHAT" they produce are both important management responsibilities. This balanced prospective is critical to the sustained performance of the business.


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