Employee Opinion Surveys: How to Get the Feedback You Need

people covering faces with thought bubbles - opinions concept

Opinions. Everyone has them. Especially your employees. 

What do they think of management? 

How do they rate the company's culture? 

How do they feel about their workload? 

Unfortunately, the likelihood of employees organically coming forward with their opinions is slim. 

Recent studies have shown that 49% who have neglected to report something to HR cited fear of retaliation. 

The best way to mitigate this fear, while still gathering feedback is through employee opinion surveys.

In this post, our employee survey company shares the basics of opinion surveys for employee relations, how to conduct an employee opinion survey, and the benefits of doing so.

Employee fear of sharing opinion statistic

Employee Opinion Surveys: Definition

Employee opinion surveys aim to gather data on employee sentiment surrounding their workplace experience. 

This type of survey will ask the staff members about various aspects of their work, company culture, managerial relationships, and how they feel about their current job duties. 

Measuring employee satisfaction doesn't just focus on one aspect of their workplace experience.

Instead, think of it as a holistic view of your staff's opinion. 

For instance, say you have a hunch employees want more flexibility with work location.

You could certainly include questions about this in your survey, but focusing strictly on this topic wouldn't be worth an entire survey. 

Instead, you could incorporate questions not only about flexibility, but:

  • What drives areas of satisfaction or dissatisfaction
  • How likely an employee is to recommend working for your organization
  • Satisfaction with compensation, benefits, opportunities for growth, etc.
  • What impacts mental health in the workplace

💡 The Key Takeaway: Staff opinion surveys cover various topics that contribute to satisfaction in the workplace. 

Value of Conducting Employee Opinion Survey

There are several benefits of employee opinion surveys.

Perhaps there is no greater driver to improving employee retention and making positive changes to company culture (changes based on data - not assumptions).

For a brief synopsis, our employee opinion survey company recaps the advantages of workplace surveys in the video below. Or keep scrolling, to read our thoughts.

1. Insight into the company culture

This is the big one. With 54% of staff prioritizing their company's mission and value system when it comes to company culture, it is important it is properly assessed.

Employee opinion surveys offer detailed insight into how your company culture rates. 

A broad term, a company's "culture" includes:

  • Employee treatment
  • Benefits
  • Positivity/negativity in the office
  • Overall company mission

Without staff feedback, you'll never if you need to focus on improving workplace culture and what steps to take to do so.  

Once you begin to run employee opinion surveys, the data will provide you with concrete ways to increase staff morale.

In turn, this will contribute to a more desirable company culture. 

Want ideas on how to maintain a happy workplace? Check out our post on How to Improve Workplace Culture for Better Long-Term Employment.

2. Raise employee engagement levels

Not only does employee survey feedback improve company culture, but it can also create higher engagement levels at work. 

Unfortunately, low staff engagement levels are not a rarity - only 36% of US employees are considered to be "engaged" at work. 

Employee fear of sharing opinion statistic

So how can this be fixed? 

With your employee opinion survey feedback, you'll be able to see where employees are struggling. 

This may be due to: 

  • Poor communication
  • Workload struggles
  • Lack of workplace flexibility 
  • Employee stress

While all of these are quite different, they all cause the same thing: low employee engagement. 

A detailed employee opinion survey can reveal the exact cause of poor engagement. In turn, you can address current policies accordingly. 

For instance, you may want to consider a flexible time-off policy, employee mental health resources, consistent "check-in" meetings, and other related outreach strategies. 

All of these can contribute to happier employees, which will naturally lead to high engagement.  

3. Reduce employee attrition

Employee opinion surveys also reduce employee attrition.

We all know that increasing employee retention creates a thriving workplace, but getting to that point may seem daunting. 

Thankfully, opinion staff surveys can make this easy.

By running these surveys (preferably on a semi-regular basis), you'll make continued improvements to your employee's experience. 

Opinion surveys for employee relations will reveal common pain points which you can then address. 

As a result, this will naturally make employees want to stay with your company as their voice is being heard and actions are being taken to resolve common issues.

Recommended Reading: Why Employees Look for a New Job (& How to Prevent It)

4. Show employees you care

Last but certainly not least, employees want to feel their opinions matter to their employer. 

But, unfortunately, only 30% of employees strongly agree that their opinions seem to count at work.

Employee opinion statistic

When employees are treated like machines rather than people, you begin to experience a whole host of issues. 

Believe it or not, the simple act of running an employee opinion survey can show your staff that you value their thoughts.

In doing this, you'll begin to make better connections with your staff. 

Plus, you'll be able to gather detailed data that will help you understand your employee's stances on a variety of topics. 

Some of these topics include: 

  • If employees look forward to coming to work
  • How they feel about time-off policies
  • Opinion on benefits 

More on the questions you should include in your survey next! 

💡 The Key Takeaway: Employee opinion surveys are able to promote a variety of important workplace initiatives. By incorporating these into your regular routine, employees will begin to feel heard. 

Example Employee Opinion Survey Questions

Unsurprisingly, the main reason for asking employees to take a staff satisfaction survey is to better understand their needs and preferences.

But this can only be done with proper questioning. Employee opinion survey questions need to be detailed and cover a variety of topics. 

Example employee opinion survey questions include: 

  • How has your job satisfaction changed over the past year? 
  • How does employment at your current company compare to others? 
  • What word comes to mind when you think of working at [current company]? 
  • How likely are you to recommend working for [current company] to others?

Other features of an employee survey include statements participants can rate.

In many cases, they'll be able to choose from "strongly agree" to "strongly disagree."

These statements will often be similar to the following: 

  • I am satisfied with the job training at my company
  • I am satisfied with my career growth opportunities 
  • I am satisfied with the benefits packages offered at my company
  • I am satisfied with my relationship with my manager

This type of questioning will cover various topics like compensation, retirement, and other related points.

💡 The Key Takeaway: The type of questions you include in your employee opinion survey matter. Questions should cover a multitude of topics that relate back to the employee experience.

How to Conduct an Employee Opinion Survey

Now that you know why it's crucial to measure employee opinion, we're going to give you a brief rundown of what the process looks like. 

Although, using a third party for employee surveys is always recommended, here is the process our team follows if you're interested in implementing the study in-house.

If you're interested in using a third-party but are concerned about budgeting, our turnkey employee survey is an option to consider. 

online survey process

1. Kickoff

A successful survey always begins with a kickoff meeting

The kickoff meeting is a way for your team to meet with the research team. Think of it as an introduction. 

During this meeting, you'll discuss:

  • Key goals
  • Concerns
  • Question ideas 
  • Timeline

You'll be able to go over all of these topics and more on an in-depth level.

Another key goal of kickoff meetings is to prevent issues from occurring down the line in the survey process.

Once both parties know what's expected, they can expect smooth sailing. 

2. Survey design 

After the kickoff meeting, the research team will begin creating survey questions. 

In our previous section, we went over a few examples of different survey questions, although it is important the survey questions match your project's unique goals and objectives.

A poorly-written survey will yield useless data.

Additionally, it is important to keep your employees engaged throughout the survey to provide the most quality results. 

This starts with the survey design.

Our employee survey company recommends making the questionnaire no longer than 25 questions.

It's here that you may begin to lose respondents.

Consider your employee's time and make the number of questions reasonable. 

3. Fieldwork

Once your employee opinion survey is written, it will be programmed into an online survey platform. 

Programming a survey requires strict attention to detail to ensure the best outcome. 

Below are some areas programmers will pay special attention to: 

  • Check that all questions have been included
  • Confirm the proper flow of the survey
  • Check that all question formats are correct
  • Ensure disqualification questions are routed correctly
  • Ensure all routing is working as intended
  • Re-check for spelling and grammatical errors

Our online survey testing checklist is a great tool to have on hand to ensure all key areas are met. 

4. Reporting

Once your employee survey data has been cleaned, a topline or comprehensive market research report will be made. 

Your report will have a detailed rundown of all the important data from your employee opinion survey. 

Reports include: 

  • Common points among responses
  • How to interpret the information 
  • Recommendations based on responses

It's important to cover each detail of the survey, as this will help the research team work with you to create actionable solutions. 

topline vs comprehensive reporting packages

5. Debrief meeting

A debrief meeting is where the report is carefully gone over with you.

It's here that you'll be able to ask questions about what the survey found, and what you can do for your employees. 

As with a kickoff meeting, you'll be able to address any final questions or concerns. 

Our biggest piece of advice? Don't let negative comments from your employees get you down. Instead, use them as inspiration to create a stable work environment!

6. Taking action

And with all of that information, you can now go forward to create an even healthier workplace. 

As we mentioned earlier, the only way to stay on top of employee sentiment is through regular feedback.

Consider allocating some of your budget to ongoing annual employee surveys to track how satisfaction levels change over time. 

💡 The Key Takeaway: Employee opinion surveys are carefully crafted with the needs of your staff in mind. The data gathered from these surveys will give you direction on how to move forward.

Recommended Reading: Conducting a Workplace Survey in 8 Steps

Contact Our Employee Survey Company

Maintaining a happy workplace is crucial if you want to have a successful business.

By listening to employees through surveying, you'll be able to continuously improve your strategy. 

Drive Research is a national market research company located in New York.

Our team has years of experience in creating and programming employee surveys. We'll work with you each step of the way to ensure you receive quality, actionable data. 

To learn more about our market research services, get in touch with us through any of the ways below. 

  1. Message us on our website
  2. Email us at [email protected]
  3. Call us at 888-725-DATA
  4. Text us at 315-303-2040


Lark Allen

As a Content Marketing Specialist, Lark has a strong background and passion for creative, professional, and journalistic writing. She is also a self-proclaimed music freak and 90s enthusiast.

Learn more about Lark, here.

subscribe to our blog


Employee Surveys